TREE + LEAF

ADVENTURE MORE

The King of the Prairie

Dusty GilpinComment

Steven Adams is the man! Rocking the NotoriRUSS MVP T! These guys do so much representing our city to a national audience and working for the community, and it's been a blast cheering for them.

Don't worry, it's not too late to be like Adams. We've restocked all sizes so you can scoop one up, both in the shop and over here!

T+L Retro Game Night

LamboComment

     Dusty is constantly pressing us to come up with ideas for events that we can host here at the store. So Silva and I put on our thinking caps, and came up with a Retro Game Night. The concept was simple, set up the video game consoles we grew up with, and let the nostalgia just flow. Obviously we needed to showcase the greatest system of all time, the Nintendo 64, so we decided to throw a Super Smash Bros. tournament into the mix. First place took home a $50 gift card to the shop, a slice of pizza from Empire, and a super sweet trophy that Silva and I whipped up. We thought the runner up deserved some goodies too, so we hooked them up with a $25 gift card, and another dope trophy. We were a little worried about the turn out due to putting the event together so last minute, but in the end it worked out perfectly. Big thanks to our friends over at Anthem Brewery who were kind enough to hook us up wth some coldies to keep everyone hydrated during the good times!

     Recently, my boss at my other job gave me a really nice 35mm film camera, so I decided to test it out on Retro Game Night. Master lensman, Zach Hatlestad, was also there snapping pics with his fancy DSLR too, so if you couldn't make it, you can live vicariously through our photos. Thanks to everyone who participated! P.S. we plan on doing another one soon with a Mario Kart tournament. Stay tuned..........

Silva killing the Adobe illustrator game.

Silva killing the Adobe illustrator game.

1st and 2nd place trophies for the Super Smash Bros. tournament.

1st and 2nd place trophies for the Super Smash Bros. tournament.

Cracking a fresh Rye'd or D'IPA to start the night off. Seriously, thank you so much Anthem!

Cracking a fresh Rye'd or D'IPA to start the night off. Seriously, thank you so much Anthem!

You say "free beer" and the whole Chump Squad will be there.

You say "free beer" and the whole Chump Squad will be there.

Once you whip out Bart's Nightmare for SNES people will always show up.

Once you whip out Bart's Nightmare for SNES people will always show up.

Meet Bailee and Dex. They were just strolling through the Plaza District on a Saturday night and stumbled into Retro Game Night. They were pleasantly surprised!

Meet Bailee and Dex. They were just strolling through the Plaza District on a Saturday night and stumbled into Retro Game Night. They were pleasantly surprised!

We all were.

We all were.

Dusty craftily drawing up the tournament brackets.

Dusty craftily drawing up the tournament brackets.

Dex and Bailee were training for the tournament on the GameCube. Little did they know they would be randomly selected to play against each other. Tough break.

Dex and Bailee were training for the tournament on the GameCube. Little did they know they would be randomly selected to play against each other. Tough break.

Austin definetly dressed for the part!

Austin definetly dressed for the part!

Dusty put together a nice big screen so we could set up the N64 on the projector in the back. It was a big hit!

Dusty put together a nice big screen so we could set up the N64 on the projector in the back. It was a big hit!

Silva showing his buddies he can still kick some ass in Tekken 3.

Silva showing his buddies he can still kick some ass in Tekken 3.

My lovely lady , Paige, checking out the selection.

My lovely lady , Paige, checking out the selection.

Picked a winner!

Picked a winner!

Let the tourney begin!!

Let the tourney begin!!

The backseat drivers.

The backseat drivers.

Playin' dirty.

Playin' dirty.

Not only did Dex and Bailee have to face each other in the first round of the tournament, but so did Paige and I. Talk about a rough night.

Not only did Dex and Bailee have to face each other in the first round of the tournament, but so did Paige and I. Talk about a rough night.

Even though Dusty and Paige got creamed in the first round they still had a good time.

Even though Dusty and Paige got creamed in the first round they still had a good time.

Steve may have gotten knocked out in the second round, but he was still ready to watch the final battle go down. 

Steve may have gotten knocked out in the second round, but he was still ready to watch the final battle go down. 

Zach prepping his camera for the finals. Joe Kuiper vs. Austin Sanders vs. Lambo.

Zach prepping his camera for the finals. Joe Kuiper vs. Austin Sanders vs. Lambo.

Retro Night chumps..... I mean champs!

Retro Night chumps..... I mean champs!

In the end Joe Kuiper was victorious! Austin earned himself a noble second place, and I was left crying in the corner with a non existent 3rd place trophy. Seriously though, congrats guys you earned it! 

In the end Joe Kuiper was victorious! Austin earned himself a noble second place, and I was left crying in the corner with a non existent 3rd place trophy. Seriously though, congrats guys you earned it! 

Artist Interviews: Todd Beats

ART, INTERVIEW, PLAZA DISTRICTDusty GilpinComment

With each feature, our aim of the game is to connect you with atoms in the local art molecule. We take the Field of Dreams, build-it-and-they-will-come approach to content creation. Call it optimistic, but we’re an optimistic brand. We believe art has a strong chance to influence. Creating opportunities for artistic voices primes our community for a more livable local scene - more stylish bars and restaurants, better design and architecture, and, fingers crossed, more open minds.

So let's keep it rolling. We welcome Todd Beats to the store this month. Todd is a high-volume, clock-racing portrait painter, with a knack for relaying his subjects’ expressions on a limited color palette. We caught up with Todd via email.

TL: Hi Todd! Tell us a little about your work - where did you grow up and how did you get introduced to art? 

TB: I was born in Denver, CO, but I've been an Okie since '89. Growing up in the 80's and 90's in the Midwest meant finding ways to entertain yourself. I was always fascinated with drawing, and I have done it since I could hold a crayon. My tween and teen years were enveloped with comic books and the art that came with it. Physical anatomy, dynamic posing, facial expression, proportion, etc drove my obsession and skills. Eventually evolving into portraiture and other artistic mediums.

TL: We'll swing back around to the portraiture. Do you have any formal training in art?

TB: Ha! Not a lick! I took a couple "art" classes in high school, but they were teaching elements that were already well-established skills in my repertoire. So it was mostly a waste of time. Can you tell why I had a hard time in high school?

TL: At least that wasn't the top of the mountain, right? The Todd star is still rising! Now, going into this show, are there any major themes or ideas in the mix?

TB: This show is all about the improvement and exercising of my skills as an artist. Simplifying and accelerating my process was a major focus, but honestly my favorite part is how the fan participation that helped drive the creation of these 20+ portraits.

TL: That's right, you mentioned that. Facebook and Instagram voters were choosing subjects for your 1-hour paintings. It lends a very interactive, pop-culture vibe to some of your work. What is it that draws you to portrait painting?

TB: There are some foundational truths I have found in art, and one of them is; if you can accurately manifest someone's likeness, and/or the physical form in general, everything else is easy. People don't understand how little forgiveness there is in portraiture. A line that's a centimeter off, or a shadow that is the wrong tone will completely change how someone looks. Being able to capture someone's likeness is just straight up rewarding.

TL: Change of pace question - do you listen to music while you work? What have you been listening to?

TB: So I actually have been a music producer for over 12 years. I have a huge catalog of my own work that I tend to listen to.  I know that sounds egotistical, and to some degree, it is. But I liken it being a skilled chef. If you can make exactly what you want to eat, why would you risk having someone else make you something that doesn't satisfy your craving.

TL: Strong analogy game. That's awesome. Let's talk Oklahoma. What is it like being an artist out here? Advantages or disadvantages?

TB: Simply stated: Big fish, small pond and all the positives and negatives that come with that. Oklahoma has blown up in the last 5-10 years as far as the art community goes. I'm stoked to see all the amazing talent that has grown from this relatively small/big city.

TL: Todd, it's been a pleasure. Thanks so much for your time. We're excited for the show. Give us an outro, where else can people find more of your work?

TB: Thanks! You can follow me on Facebook and Instagram @toddbeats. I paint live frequently, and my wife and I have a live morning show every weekday. You can follow us @morning_tna or watch us live on her Facebook account, Ashtyn Anderson.

Todd's show opens at 7PM during Live on the Plaza (3/10)! You can catch him live painting in-store. His work will remain up throughout March. Pieces will be available for sale, and the man himself will be available for similar commissions. Put on your art show shoes and swing by!