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Anchorage First Fridays: Partying the “Art” out of it

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Listen, as fans of the site can tell you… we at 907Life love the weekend. We being a dedicated site on what happens around town, we can’t wait because the weekend is when most things happen here and we entail get to write, shoot and film Alaskans dancing, laughing, eating the good eats and living the good life, so it just makes sense.

But what doesn’t make sense is the fact that we still hear about some who feel there is a lack of Anchorage activities. So let us help, 907Life is not just about photos and blog stories, it’s also about establishing a more defined understanding of the lifestyle we as Alaskans in Anchorage have created. And one of those lifestyle elements being, First Fridays. And we can be honest… it’s kinda rad. Like for real, for real… First Fridays are definitely that thing you are looking for to switch up your routine or give you an excuse to try somewhere new.

We are going to jump ahead a few chapters and assume you have either already heard about First Fridays in and around Anchorage or you’ve already been. So let’s get to our… Anchorage First Fridays: Partying the “Art” out of it.

 

Anchorage First Friday It’s Friday right?…
Show up

Look, everyone knows there are 2 ways to enter a swimming pool, you can dip a toe in… or cannonball into that mother-father!!

First Fridays by all accounts pretty much have the same rule structure, jump in!! We actually love this reasoning, its pretty straight forward. You miss out on 100% of the things you don’t try. One of the best things about First Fridays in Anchorage is that every time is in a sense, different. You may visit the same location, but so much about the visit is changed, the artist, the work and the crowds that accompany it.

First Friday is about the experience of seeing whats new, what’s inspiring people around you and ultimately giving people a look at the way our art scene and community is being influenced. What’s fun sometimes is seeing how the artist or the art dictates the environment it exists in.

 

Anchorage First FridayWe heard there will be punch and pie…
T
ake advantage of the samples

Have you ever been to like, Costco or some place like that looking to stock up on supplies… specific stuff like coffee or paper towels? You go for what you need and end up staying for everything else. They have you tasting things, watching demonstrations and saying things like… “Well, it really is a good deal.” Next thing you know you are cashing out with director’s cut box sets of “Dawson’s Creek” and a 6-pound bag of pretzels.

NO ONE NEEDS 6 POUNDS OF PRETZELS!!

First Fridays in Anchorage at its best are, like Costco… great for free samples. Various artists and venues team up to provide light provisions such as veggie trays, dips, light hordorves and even in best cases, beverages of the adult kind. “Did somebody say white wine?” For, Freeee? Getting out and getting around early can make for quite the eventful night if you do it properly. Might make good use for that bag of pretzels you picked up earlier.

 

Anchorage First FridaysUgh, I don’t have anything to wear…
Come as you are

Look, you are amazing as you are… no need to thank us, we mean it. But with that being said, First Fridays in Anchorage are as much about fashion as it is art.
What we mean by that is, part of the experience is the opportunity to not only consume the vibrancy of the scene but contribute to it. So it’s really about how you feel. Some will find that dressing up is the right move based on the studio or environment that your First Friday exists. Others will find that dressing as you are and moving from location to location is the play.  What we’re saying is… People watching is a particularly amusing pastime.

Another cool aspect of Anchorage First Fridays is the diversity in which you will find a show. It’s evolved way past art studios. Whether its music-driven, food based or even in the past year or so, a clothing boutique or tattoo parlor. Everyone is getting into the festivities. Among our favorites are the ladies over at Blush Boutique who feature and even host designers of popular labels that they carry at their store.  And what?!! A sale?!! “Well, it really is a good deal.” Gurl … you fancy!

Anchorage First Friday This is awesome… How did they make that?
Ask questions about the artists

Art in any sense is objective. Let’s be honest… at first glance, even the most expensive and most renowned art has the tendency to look like a baby who had its fill of its Gerber peas and carrots and fancied a canvas with the rest of it. “Ooo… notice the way the artist textured the details of this piece with bits of peas and used their fingers to fill the area with a dark orange hue color?” Oooo…  Aauhh…!!

You can’t please everyone, but you can find enough variety in an Anchorage First Friday to satisfy the most opinionated of crowds. Do you like something you see? Hate it? Do you want to know how they created their piece? Ask!! Ask, Ask, Ask. First Friday shows are the chance for a featured artist to not only display their work but to share their inspirations, meet potential fans and maybe sell a few. Anchorage plays host to a variety of different and very talented individuals all who are all helping to contribute to the community and city we call home.

When is a soup can, not just a soup can?

Anchorage First FridayHoney… what do you think about this piece for the kitchen?
Support local artist

Oh, here we go right? The pitch, a gimmick if you will? Actually no! When you hear the words “support local” it’s not always a monetary investment. Sometimes its the very act of making an appearance, share an event post, even contributing your own perspective on the scene. It doesn’t take much.

Much of what makes places “known” in a sense for a particular thing is the involvement of the people that live there. Being able to inspire and push a scene is what changes everything. Think about it… What if no one went to New York to act? or California to go to the beach? Initially, when that happens it makes way for the culture to begin to form around it… theaters get built to showcase plays, swim suits get sold to lay out in the sun.

In Anchorage, First Fridays are thrown to encourage everyone to come out and experience the best of what Anchorage has to offer, whether it’s in the form of art, music, food or fashion. We bet you never knew a simple night out, could ripple effect into so much? #themoreyouknow

Anchorage First Friday I can draw that, right? Can I do that?
Throw your own art show

Have you ever seen, anything really and said… “This is it? I can do that.”

Well, guess what? Spoiler alert… you literally can!! Like for serious. You might be surprised by the amount of talent here in Anchorage that got their start by friends and family pressuring them to “just do it”.  While all the talent in First Fridays are at various levels… the question is not whether if its “good or bad” rather, does the work “inspire you”? Does it move you? If your reaction is “Wow” or “This Sucks” (which you should never say, Moms rules”) The art which provoked that reaction has just done its job.

So with that being said… Do it!! Like we said in the beginning, there’re two ways to get in. We jump!!

So lets recap, Anchorage First Fridays Art walks. It’s Dope! They are (just about) every 1st Friday of every month. You can find one in and near all of your favorite local Alaskan shops, studios, and venues. Free snacks and drinks, amazing people watching, fun, friends and the opportunity to change and contribute to the community around you. Questions? Thoughts? Recommendations for Pizza?

Doodle something and share!!! And we’ll see ya next First Friday!!


Have you been to a First Friday event in Anchorage? What are your favorite spots? Hate First Fridays? Do you have a favorite local artist? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.

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Phillip Crawford

Content creator and video/photographer for 907Life.com You can follow Phillip on Twitter and Instagram - @phillip907