In their simplest form, balloons are a bonus.
They’re never needed, really, the way a birthday calls out to a cake or Christmas calls out to a tree or many occasions can be covered in a card.
When you think of celebrating someone, balloons might not be the first thought. Maybe it’s their specialty, the way balloons say, “Here’s something more.”
To multiply this feeling, people could call on Marc Feikert.
Marvelous Marc, as he’s known, doesn’t show up with balloons in their simplest form.
For birthdays or company picnics, he creates balloons that look like princesses, bouquets of flowers, photo frames and animated characters.
At a cafe in Colorado Springs one recent morning, he brought one of his signature creations: an octopus with curved orange arms and cartoonish eyes. It seemed to bubble. Each part was formed with balloons, using a handful of sizes and colors. Feikert fashioned the piece into a headband.
“Here,” he said smiling as he handed over the gift. “Put that on and embarrass yourself.”
Feikert received punches and high-fives, all from wide-eyed strangers who didn’t expect to see balloons while waiting for breakfast.
“As soon as I show up with one of them, I’m like an instant celebrity,” he said.
This has happened often since 2012, when Feikert discovered the hobby of ball art.
If you ask him how long he’s been doing this, he’ll look at his watch. This is one of his learned tracks over the years as an artist.
Another one? When you ask what inspired Feikert to start this, he jokes, “My wife’s loudmouth!”
It was at a birthday party for one of their child’s friends. There was a balloon station set up, but no one knew how to operate it.
His wife intervened: “My husband knows how to do it!
Feikert kind of knew how. He had done a balloon dog or two before. This time it just clicked.
After the party, Feikert left with a present. He found something new to learn and enjoy. And, unlike his other interests, it was creative.
The self-proclaimed brainiac has always favored math and science and studied theoretical linguistics in college. He now works in a “specialty area of information architecture,” which he says is the short way to describe his full-time job.
The “balloon artist” side of him may seem random.
“You could say it’s out of my element,” he said.
You’ll find that’s not the case, because Feikert finds a joke in most conversation topics. His playful personality found its way to Marvelous Marc (marvelousmarcballoons.com), the name of his balloon art business.
“It doesn’t surprise me that I picked this up,” Feikert said. “It surprised me that it took so long.”
He always likes to surprise people with his skills.
When asked to create a sword, one of the most common requests, he makes it a giant sword. When asked for something less common, like a sneeze or a robot chicken, he thinks on his feet.
“You wonder why people think it’s so magical? he said. “Because they’ve never seen anything like it.”
That’s why, says Feikert, balloon art has remained a favorite party trick for decades. And more than that. It’s an industry with conventions and competitions. When people throw parties, they always hire balloon artists. In Colorado Springs, there are a few numbers to call.
“Why isn’t it a fad that’s gone?” he said. “Balloons are magical. There is fear and magic around him. All I do is add more. »