Paint Fight Club: The Power of Joy

Acrylic & Ink on Construction Floor Covering – Words: Chinese Proverb

We are in week twenty-one of a fifty week calligraphy challenge and the topic was color. Make a color chart, mix colors or do anything with colors you do not usually do. My friend had a fun idea so instead of the conventional route I made this response an all inclusive activity.

Over the Memorial Day weekend we had family visiting. We had not seen some of them in over eighteen months. We planned a cookout and I invited a friend who had a fabulous idea…a paint fight! Yes, I was crazy enough to give teenagers power blasters filled with acrylic paint. I used their enthusiasm and my friend’s idea to fulfill the color prompt. I clamped construction floor covering (brown paper) between two beams and gave each person a loaded squirt gun full of paint. The target was a member of the group taking their turn to stand in front of the paper and get pelted with paint. Ready, aim fire! We each took turns shooting and being shot with paint. It was a blast! Paint Fight Club has begun, and they are already planning the improved version for next year. Once the background paper was dry I cut it into sheets and then lettered this proverb with ink and gel pens.

It is amazing what happens when you challenge people to be silly and reckless at the same time. Some of the participants were a bit hesitant until they helped with the prep work. The anticipation slowly grew until guns were at the ready no matter who went first. Their smiles, giggles and laughter was worth more than gold! FYI, the first shot was fired by my 83 year old Mom…she was awesome!

When we have joy we give other people license to have joy. When we let loose others understand it is okay to do the same. And when we pave the way for people to have fun while being together, that is pure magic! Paint Fight Club will go down in family lore for generations. I am so very grateful to my friend for suggesting it AND for my family for being willing to give it a shot – literally!

When I posted my work and the story in the challenge group everyone loved it. Two women are already planning to do it for their teens over the next holiday weekend. Joy is contagious!


  1. The paint fight sounds like a wonderful and messy idea! And I really like your words about joy — to give people space to be silly and not worry about looking cool. Just simply have fun!


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