MARSHALL?-?In the last year, Micah Luke said he's been doing a lot of painting.
Since July, his goal is to complete 144 paintings by the end of the year, with all the artworks going to charitable organizations.
And he had to create pieces for his latest two shows on top of that.
"I just had a 38-piece show at the Empire Mall in Sioux Falls,"?Luke said. That project was for Volunteer Sioux Falls, he said.
Luke, a 2008 graduate of Southwest Minnesota State University, has his latest solo show "Dream is Destiny,"?at the Marshall Area Fine Arts Center. The exhibit will run Tuesday through Nov. 27.
As for his latest venture, "144 Charges," Luke said it was something that just appeared to him.
"Honestly, it came to me in a dream, it was one of those things where I?woke up and said I?had to do it,"?Luke said.
So far, he's done 80 of the 144 paintings and has donated them to charities and a few people who are down on their luck. One of those people, he said, was a man who had lost eight of his close relatives in a matter of seven years.
For years, Luke has done paintings using spray paint, and he said he has started using stencils in his work as well.
"This show in particular is 100 percent spray paint,"?Luke said about his MAFAC exhibit.
The actual painting part for the MAFAC exhibit was done in two weeks, but Luke said it spent a little more time than that planning it out.
"(Figuring out)?what I?want to say with my show, how I?want to say it,"?Luke said.
Luke, who now lives in Sioux Falls, S.D., has become immersed in the city's art scene. He's now the marketing and business development coordinator for the Sioux Empire Arts Council. He also started a "Battle for the Arts"?event that takes place twice a month at Club David in Sioux Falls.
Luke said the "Battle for the Arts" is where two artists go on stage and have 30 minutes to do a 4-by-4 foot artwork in marker. There are brackets, he added, and the artwork is auctioned off.
"We just finished our first season in August,"?Luke said. A second season just recently started and other "Battle"?events with fashion designers and comedians are set to start.
"It's a lot of fun,"?Luke said about the "Battle of the Arts," adding that artists don't usually have cheering when they work. "When we battle, it's deafening."
Since the voting is done by the audience's cheering, the volume can hit 122 decibels he said.
And Luke wouldn't have it any other way.
"I'm crazy busy, but it's all stuff I?like to do which makes it easier,"?Luke said.