In its simplest form, balloons are an advantage.
They are never needed, really, as a birthday party asks for a cake or a Christmas tree or many occasions can be covered with a card.
When you think of celebrating someone, balloons may not be the first thing you think of. Maybe that’s his specialty, as the balloons say, “There’s something extra here.”
To multiply that feeling, people might call Marc Feikert.
The wonderful Marc, as he is known, does not appear with balloons in his simplest form.
At birthday parties or corporate picnics, create balloons to look like princesses, bouquets, frames and animated characters.
At a Colorado Springs cafe one recent morning, he brought one of his distinctive creations: an octopus with orange curved arms and cartoon eyes. He seemed to be blowing bubbles. Each part was formed with balloons, using some sizes and colors. Feikert modeled the piece as a tiara.
“Here,” he said, smiling as he handed the gift. “Put this on and be ashamed.”
Feikert found himself punched and punched five times, all by strangers with open eyes who did not expect to see the art of the balloon while waiting for breakfast.
“As soon as I show up with one of these, I’m like an instant celebrity,” she said.
This has happened a lot since 2012, when Feikert took up the hobby of balloon art.
If you ask him how long he has been doing this, he will look at his watch. It is one of his pieces learned over the years as an animator.
Another? When asked what inspired Feikert to start this, he would joke, “My wife’s big mouth!”
It was at a birthday party for one of his children’s friends. There was a balloon station installed, but no one knew how to work it.
His wife said, “My husband knows how!”
Feikert knew how to do it. I had done one or two balloon dogs before. This time, just click.
After the party, Feikert left with a gift. He found something new to learn and enjoy. And unlike his other interests, he was creative.
The self-described brain always favored mathematics and science and studied theoretical linguistics at university. He now works in a “specialized area of information architecture,” which he says is the shortest way to describe his full-time job.
His “balloon artist” side may seem random.
“You could say it’s out of my element,” he said.
You’ll find that it’s not, but Feikert finds a joke in most conversation topics. Her cheerful personality has found a home as Marvelous Marc (marvelousmarcballoons.com), the name of her balloon art business.
“I’m not surprised he took that,” Feikert said. “I was shocked that it took so long.”
He still likes to surprise people with his skills.
When asked to create a sword, one of the most common requests, he turns it into a giant sword. When asked about something less common, such as a sneeze or a robot chicken, think about standing up.
“Wondering 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 endured as a favorite party trick for decades. And more than that. It is an industry with conventions and competitions. When people party, they still hire balloon artists. In Colorado Springs, there are a few numbers to call.
“Why isn’t this a fad that’s gone?” He said. “Balloons are magic. There is a bit of wonder and magic around it. All I’m doing is adding them. “