Entertainment & Activities, Venues

Etc. December 2014

Airbrush Artist

Aaron Knox has always had a talent for art. Four years ago, Knox and his wife Melanie launched Liquid Imprints, a makeup artistry service specializing in airbrushed body art. Since then, the pair has been wowing the convention business, including ComicCon Toronto and the Gourmet Food and Wine Expo, with intricate designs and logo art on models for events and companies who know the marketing value of having living, breathing advertising strolling around the trade show floor.

Special effects and character makeup are also part of Liquid Imprints portfolio. The Knoxes were among the team of makeup artists that transformed Canada’s Wonderland’s recent Halloween Haunt cast of 700 during its nightly run. For fun guest interaction, Liquid Imprints also offers a face and hand airbrush station. According to Knox: “Airbrushing is more sanitary than hand painting since our tools don’t actually touch skin.”

Group Escape

Meet the next generation of murder mystery-style entertainment: Escape room games, where instead of following the lead of actors, participants are the stars of a live-action challenge. LockQuest, located in a nondescript building at Yonge and Summerhill, is the latest in a string of escape room game sites to open in Toronto. The basic premise is participants are locked in a room where they must search for clues and solve puzzles to escape.

LockQuest’s current game is ingenious in the way it draws players into its elaborately staged pulp-fiction setting and an Escape the Book Club Killer storyline. Up to 12 participants race against the clock to unravel mind-boggling clues to first discover and unlock handcuffs of team members who disappear at game start, and then work together to free themselves from the room. As a team-builder, it’s definitely a fresh, adrenaline-pumping approach to collaborative problem solving, communication and attention to detail. Hold post-game analysis using score sheets that track how fast clues were found and rating against other teams.

Brand Performance

Pixel Performance, a unique act from The Idea Hunter, lights up your company name and logo in a swirl of spinning colour and designs. Based on poi performance art, which traditionally involves spinning fire from tethered weights, Pixel Performance swings LED batons programmed to display custom graphics, text and logos. This updated approach enables multi-colouring, customized branding, and dynamic indoor entertainment that replicates fire poi without the potential hazard restrictions.

Set to music, the special visual effect choreography is paced to begin slowly with the light making leisurely graceful arcs. As the music builds in crescendo, so does the light motion, with performers spinning and rotating the batons to create beautiful patterns of in the air that morph from abstract images, to logos to text. The three-dimensional digital light show is a multi-purpose marketing tool with loads of possibilities including showcasing a new brand at a product launch to an unusual way to display winner names at an awards event.