Sacramento artist David Garibaldi rehearses in his Elk Grove studio.
ELK GROVE - Inside his Elk Grove studio, Sacramento artist David Garibaldi rehearses his live show, planning every step and movement, choregraphing every dab of paint and brush stroke.
"There is a lot of preparation but when do so something over and over so many times, you get it in your heart," said Garibaldi. "It is like trying to learn a play, or trying to learn some notes, you are not playing it anymore, you are performing it."
And once on stage, Garibaldi mesmerizes the crowd with his combination of dance and music, and his ability to quickly turn a blank piece of canvas into a work of art.
"Rhythm and hue is the best way I can describe what I do on stage. It is a production, it is sort of an inspirational experience, it is hard to explain to people what I do, so I just use performance painter," said Garibaldi.
Last Wednesday, Garibaldi brought his show to the Crest Theater for "Garibaldi Live". In front of a sold out crowd, he painted portraits of music icons Rhianna, Bruno Mars, Beethoven and John Lennon. For Garibaldi, in many ways the performance was a barometer for his career, who only eight years ago was nearly homeless.
"I used to drive by this place growing up having no idea one day I would be standing on stage in a sold out Sacramento show," Garibaldi told a cheering crowd.
"It was actually when I came on some hard times, my car was repossessed, I lost my job and was about to be evicted from my apartment, and all I really had left was my creativity," Garibaldi told News10. "I had never tried painting before with brushes or canvas and gave it try."
Today, Garibaldi will travel the country and the world performing and painting in 80 to 100 shows in a year. He currently has 150 portraits in his repertoire and will use 20-25 paintings in one season.
Both artist and performer, Garibaldi is quickly becoming an icon much like the faces he already paints.
"I would hope they would know or remember how we used the platform," Garibaldi said. "That it was bigger than just entertaining."
Written by Ryan Yamamoto, RYamamoto@News10.net