Last Saturday, RAW invited the best local artists in Dallas to showcase their music, artwork, fashion, makeup, designs, and more at their annual showcase. With so much talent in many different artistic fields, we came across multiple noteworthy performances and paintings worth checking out. Take a look at some local artists showcased at RAW Dallas: Trend:


  Photo Credit:   Sterling T. Steves

Photo Credit: Sterling T. Steves

Tippy Balady

The raw talent of Tippy Balady shocked the crowd as they found out she was only 15 year old, yet could belt out pure & soulful self-written lyrics with sophistication and power. “Songwriting is my outlet for expression,” says Balady. “And I love seeing people’s reactions when I perform them.” Although Balady admits she’s pretty shy in person, no one in the crowd would have guessed it. “When I’m on stage,” says Balady, “It’s just a different feeling.” Her pop-swing song, Magic Trick, proved her prominent stage presence and had the whole crowd dancing along.

As a driven and passionate musician, her inspiration for songwriting comes from her personal experiences—from her touching song, Coconut Cake, about her grandma’s struggle with Parkinson's disease, to That Girl, a song about the typical mean girls she experienced in high school. “I actually played that song in front of the girl it was about, but she had no idea it was about her.” Pretty cool Taylor Swift-like moment, we might add.

Believe us when we say Tippy Balady is ahead of her time and worth a listen. Check out Tippy’s music on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, or download her latest release, Coconut Cake, on iTunes.

 Photo Credit:  Sterling T. Steves

Photo Credit: Sterling T. Steves

Ashton Edminster

The refreshing, folk sound by singer-songwriter, Ashton Edminster caught RAW’s attention with her resounding vocals and energetic vibe. The 17-year-old has been playing for six years around Dallas from coffee shops to the House of Blues and SouthSide Ballroom. “I’ve been whistling and humming since before I could talk,” says Edminster, and her talent proves her innate ability to light up a room with her talent. Not to mention, she rocks both the eukleia and acoustic guitar.

When it comes to being inspired to create new music, Edminster looks to her experiences and stories, as well as old music for influence. She named her EP ‘For My Darling’ because of her distinct appreciation for an old school style of music—and for the disappointing fact that no one says darling anymore. “I like taking something old and making it new,” Edminster says. Inspired by jazz, folk, and soul, some of her biggest influential artists include John Denver, Lauryn Hill, Ellas Fitzgerald, and Amy Winehouse.

To hear Ashton’s music, check her out on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube, or catch her next shows at Intrinsic Smokehouse & Brewery on May 13 and Josey Records on May 28.


Austin James Art

With an undeniable vibrance to his work, Austin James showcased a colorful pop-art collection at RAW including Marilyn Monroe, Ray Charles, Michael Jackson, and Jimi Hendrix. One of the more exciting pieces at RAW was his Mugshot Pop Art series featuring Frank Sinatra, Johnny Cash, and Prince. “I chose to do a mugshot series because it gives an extra bad-ass edge to any person you paint,” James says. “Also, it’s one aspect of pop art I haven’t seen anyone get into before. It’s unique and rare to see a painting of a low point in a person’s career.” says James.

His inspiration for painting stems from his passion for music, which is clear in his pop-art icons and another mixed-media piece combining a Beatles vinyl with acrylic painted canvas. As his second appearance at RAW, he shares that RAW is unlike other art shows where artists are the focal point, rather than just in the background.

Check out the work of Austin James on his website, Facebook, or Instagram.

Magic Masterpieces

The master behind Magic Masterpieces, Dane Valnes, attends University of North Texas (UNT), taking classes on drawing and painting to extend his life-long passion for art. His concept work from class represents about half his collection, while the other half stems towards pop art and pop culture paintings. Much of Valnes’ paintings reflect his experiences and depth, from daily encounters to philosophical concepts.

Pulling inspiration from the decalcomania Surrealist movement, Valnes interpreted this technique in a few pieces at RAW; a process in which he paints on glass and smashes it onto canvas to create a texturized, colorful, and fragmented painting. His other brushy and impressionist style paintings, reflect motifs of ‘cell phone zombies’ and the consuming nature of technology. Check out the work of Dane Valnes on Facebook at Magic Masterpieces!


MRP Beauty Solutions

It was hard to miss the work of beauty and hair stylist, Meghan Palla at RAW. Owner of MRP Beauty Solutions in Southlake, Palla had a vision to create a striking and meaningful piece for RAW that came to life with galactical body paint, eccentric headdresses, and an intriguing story. “Since RAW’s theme this year is Trend, I was contemplating what hits the motif, but is vey me,” says Palla. “To get the answer, I just looked up.” Inspired by the galaxy above, Palla turned her very own clients into a galaxy.

With thematic body paint and towering hairstyles, Palla transformed her clients into character such as a galactic deer, an Athena-like warrior, a sun goddess, and Mother Earth. Her vision was to integrate the otherworldly theme and mix with clothing elements that we understand. Palla explains that the galaxy girls represented lost souls of musicians, like Prince, David Bowie, and other legends. It was quite literally, out of this world.

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Amy Mrstik