A live painting competition in Shoreditch this week will raise money for the Red Cross's emergency Ukraine appeal.

Kiss My Art returns on Thursday, March 31 for the first time since the beginning of the pandemic with Make Art Not War, where 10 artists will compete for the golden paintbrush.

The night includes entertainment by spoken word artists Kirsty Allison and Pat Have Mercy, comedy from Dee Gruselle-Allum, and special guest DJ Buckley Roland.

Kiss My Art founder Carlotta Allum said: “I spoke to this really sweet girl at my university whose parents were making their way over from Kyiv to the borders of Poland and it really touched me.

“I think it’s a good theme for the night as with these things you often don’t know what to do, so if there is anything practical you can actually do at least it feels like you’re doing something.”

Currently doing her PhD at Central St Martin’s in the Design Against Crime Research Centre, the 50-year-old founded Kiss My Art in 2016 after participating in a similar event in her home town of Manchester.

On the night, the artists will have half an hour to paint models curated by London Drawing, while visitors vote for their favourite artwork.

A final round will see the four with the most votes going head-to-head, with the winner receiving the golden paintbrush.

Carlotta said: “I think it’s the ultimate endeavour to draw the human body but these art events are a little different because they are a mixture of high art and a fun night out.”

An artist herself, Carlotta runs the charity Stretch which takes art to prisoners and vulnerable groups.

She said: “My dad was an art lecturer and I was always the arty child, but I put it away for a long time and later on had to come back to it in my own way.

“Now I enjoy facilitating other people to be creative and use creativity.”

One acts at Kiss My Art will be poet Pat “Have Mercy” Leacock.

Now a teacher, Pat worked in the music industry for decades and stages the East Finchley Festival every year.

During the pandemic, the 57-year-old co-founded a radio station to showcase new talent and connect the community through music.

While music remains an integral part of his artistic expression, Pat now focuses primarily on poetry.

The East Finchley local said: “With my poetry, it’s always about my truth. About how poorly I was as a child because I was severely asthmatic, about being abused for being black, anti-Semitism, racism, sexism, homophobia.

“Everything and anything that I feel passionate about comes out in my poetry.”

The move to poetry came suddenly five years ago when he wrote The Skin I’m In one morning, Pat continued.

He said: “It really captured how I was feeling about being judged for my skin colour, but also how other people were seen in a really horrible light because of their sexuality or their gender. And I just wanted to put it all into this poem.”

His stage name, Have Mercy, goes back to his days as a musician. As Pat tells it, he was playing a drum solo with a band many years ago when the lead singer suddenly yelled for him to stop.

According to Pat, the lead singer was so excited by the solo he wanted Pat to start again saying: “Lord have Mercy! Do it again.” And since then the name has stuck.

Kiss My Art is 7pm to midnight on March 31 at Basing House, Shoreditch, 25 Kingsland Road.

Tickets £7, pre-booking online at kissmyartevents.com or £10 at the door.