PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) – A local balloon artist was selected from hundreds of artists around the world for a very special honor. We’re talking about the Big Balloon Build in the UK!
“I started going to balloon conferences, balloon events, taking different classes. I actually started my business in 2014. I’m a certified balloon artist. I took a class for that. It was like 3 to 10 different tests we had to take. We had to score above an 80. You actually had to go in and do the work and create different designs, balloon designs, in order to be certified.”
Jones-Ballard heard of the Big Balloon Build and decided she wanted to apply.
“Over 100 people from all over the world applied for this position, and so what they did was they went to our social media, clicked to see our designs and our skills to see what we were able to create, and that’s how I was chosen to go on this event.”
The Big Balloon Build is a non-profit that partners with charities to help children in need. All proceeds from the event benefit the Surrey Charity Network, a collective of 30 charities in the Surrey/Guildford area that support local children.
“I love making people happy, and I feel like balloons make people feel happy, especially once we finish something and they see the masterpiece we have created, the artistry behind it, it actually gives me peace.”
Jones-Ballard says she is on the reindeer team which will create the animals as part of an immersive balloon land built out of more than 125,000 balloons. When all is said and done, the balloon artists will build a Christmas wonderland.
“There’s 10 different teams, and each team is put together based on their skills.”
She says she and her team members have been working together over the phone and online. Now, she’s getting ready to meet them all in person! Jones-Ballard leaves for her adventure on December 9.
“I’m very excited. I’m happy. I’m nervous. I’m everything above. I can’t wait to go. I can’t wait to build, because we’re actually donating our time so that we can put this together. I”ll be working with some big named artists.”
If you would like to help Jones-Ballard with airfare, you can reach her at the following:
“I’m hoping to be able to, with the experience I learn there, is actually bring it back here and service my community. So, if you need and balloons, please contact me. We can create anything for you.”