Creativity meets recycling at Burbank downtown arts festival

Artwork of all kinds, including animation, took center stage this past weekend during the annual Downtown Burbank Arts Festival.

Booths lined San Fernando Boulevard from Magnolia Boulevard to Angeleno Avenue, featuring a wide variety of artwork, including paintings, sculptures, drawings and jewelry.

One section of the event focused on animation with participants including Gnomon School of Visual Effects, the Art Institute of California-Inland Empire and the Chapman University Dodge College of Film and Media Arts.

The city partnered with Burbank-based Creative Talent Network in hosting the animation section. One of the network’s major upcoming events is the CTN Animation Expo, which is slated for Nov. 21 through 23 in Burbank.

Following the animation theme, chalk artists who created colorful artwork on San Fernando Boulevard were asked to draw animated characters, which included the Pink Panther, Fung Fu Panda and Mickey Mouse, circa his early Steamboat Willy days.

Artist Arlou Somo was in the midst of drawing Kung Fu Panda on Saturday afternoon.

While he usually only does chalk creations for the Burbank Arts Festival and the Pasadena Chalk Festival — to be held this year June 14 and 15 — Somo’s job lets him regularly tap his creativity.

“I do textile design,” said the North Hills resident, who works at Alexander Henry Fabrics in Burbank.

The city also celebrated Earth Day during the arts festival.

Inside a long tent were several displays and tables with information about conservation and e-waste. A popular display was a talking robot made out of old computer parts by Jason Brown, who works at the Burbank Recycle Center.

The robot also had a “dog” made out of a cellphone.

One side of the tent was covered by a wall created by tying together 433 plastic grocery bags.

“That’s the average number of plastic grocery bags used per person per year,” said Ferris Kawar, recycling specialist for the city.

Kawar pointed out, however, that the number of used plastic grocery bags is declining quickly as cities, including Glendale and Los Angeles, have implemented bans on them.

“And Burbank is looking at our own ban,” Kawar said.


Follow Mark Kellam on Twitter: @LAMarkKellam.


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