ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (FOX 13) - Artist Michael Israel is known for his high energy 'speed painting.' He seems to throw paint on a canvas to create images often with music and lights, like an artistic rock concert.
But the already unusual artist is doing something even further outside his norm. Israel is visiting Admiral Farragut Academy in St. Petersburg, Florida to get some help on his new project from scuba diving students.
"When I normally paint, I'm grounded, but even in the water with weight belts I'm like wait a minute," he explained.
On this day, Israel is speed painting underwater for the first time.
"And of course I don't have an easel down there. I have divers holding the canvas," said Israel.
Several Farragut students in scuba gear are at the bottom of the pool holding the canvas when Israel dives in with his brushes and paint.
He starts to paint and within a few minutes and image begins to appear.
"It was incredible," says Farragut student Melissa Price. "At first you couldn't really tell what it was going to be, but then once he flipped it around and finished it up it was clear. It was Albert Einstein, and it was incredible."
Israel says his art has a purpose.
"I think the best artwork is not what's on the canvas but the people it inspires, the support it raises for worthy endeavors," says Israel.
Israel will headline the opening of the new DeSeta Hall performing arts facility at Admiral Farragut Academy on Saturday, April 6. The public is invited to attend.
For more information visit https://farragut.org/rfts/.