To show Fitzpatrick's sense of humor, Beneventi played a video on her smart phone of Fitzpatrick modeling a pair of high heels at a garage sale in hopes of securing a buyer.
Friend Gene Wie met Fitzpatrick in elementary school and said when it came to art, she was determined.
"She had a big smile, contagious laughter with a healthy dose of sarcasm," Wie said. "She became [an oil painter] because she wanted to.
"The first time she applied to Orange County [High] School of the Arts [a public charter school for grades seven through 12] they turned her down. She said, 'I need to be better.' She could have taken it to mean she wasn't cut out to do art, but she got into the school."
Fitzpatrick was born in 1991 in France and moved to Irvine at age 6, according to her online biography. She was accepted to OCHA at age 12.
A bulk of her work focused on waves, according to her website.
"My intent is to capture the beauty of the ocean and its ephemeral waves, as well as the many nuances and elements in waves such as the transparency of water, thickness of foam and lighting effects," Fitzpatrick wrote on her website. "This passion that I wish to share comes from surfing and the moments I spent in the ocean feeling the wave's immense power and analyzing its beautiful form and color."
Forty-five minutes into the vigil a handful of mourners broke into song: first the Beach Boys' "Surfer Girl" followed by The Temptations' "My Girl."
"I can't remember a time she wasn't smiling," LCAD game art student Alex Maxwell said. "She would always be smiling, no matter what class she was taking."
An 83-year-old Minnesota woman driving a Honda sedan struck Fitzpatrick, according to Laguna Beach police, who are investigating the collision.
Alcohol or drugs did not play a factor, police said.
Fitzpatrick's work will be on display from May 6 through June 6 at the LCAD art gallery at 225 Forest Ave.
A grassy knoll on the college's main campus will be renamed Nina's Park in honor of Fitzpatrick.