Wall Play

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All right … the fun begins … in the first shot you can see the blank wall. The job begins by covering almost everything in a plastic drop cloth. The the base boards and mouldings are taped off.

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The little guy, Elijah, is my helper. His weapon of choice was a double mini faux roller. I had him begin by blocking in colour below the horizon. I took my large cut-in brush slightly blending the two colours with short quick strokes.

I then set him up on his little work table with the colouring pages I had fortunately had the foresight to bring along with some coloured pencils. He was so excited he spent most of the day, in between tasks hopping around on one leg, arms and hands flailing in the air. LOL.

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Being my first mural I wanted a clear idea in mind before I began. This involved a long period of visual study. Using bits and pieces from each reference picture, incorporated with a mental picture in my mind’s eye. I tried to reproduce the colour variegations of skies, clouds, and rainbows.

I begin putting in some colour variations above the horizon working up toward the clouds. My study of the sky colours came in handy, being this is my first mural. From numerous reference photos, taking advantage of different sky variations and cloud formations.

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Now it’s time to start blocking in the clouds, with a basic idea of the approximate size and where I wanted to see them. I am also taking the mural into the corners on both ends, as you can see, to give more of a three dimensional effect.

With colour washes, I mark the areas where the rainbow pokes through the clouds, and where it hides behind the clouds. The most difficult part of painting a rainbow is remembering the complex colour sequence.

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Things are taking shape at this point, after several hours of work. This is a large area to cover, and the biggest painting I have ever done. I realize at this point I am tired, and the project will not be finished in one day.

And you cannot believe the mess I had going! Trays of paint, and glazes, scattered paint tubes, brushes, rags, rollers and sponges. The drop sheet in one large spot was covered in yellow ochre. Apparently I had stepped on the partially uncapped tube and it was
e v e r y w h e r e !!! And I was covered in paint splotches from head to toe. Just now I am trying to find professional help for the incurably messy.

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Elijah piped up, “So this is your first mural.”
I said, “Yes, aren’t you lucky.”
He then decided my next project was going to be an entire house, after which I would be doing City Hall. LOL.

After cleanup, which took a while, we had a lovely dinner, and a good visit. Unfortunately you will not see the finished mural until about mid-January, when my patrons return from a three week holiday.

I can tell you I throughly enjoyed this. When I first began, a feeling of soaring came over me as if I were about to take flight. At that moment that I understood why children like to draw on walls. I now know this will be the first of many murals. It was exhilarating and very freeing. A highly recommended form of therapy.

Wall Play was last modified: August 10th, 2016 by Deborah Robinson

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