Thursday, July 9, 2009

A mural, in 7 (more) days...

Well, it's been a while, but since my last update and another 7 days of working, the mural at 4337 Park Heights Avenue is officially done! It took me 14 days from start to finish and a total of 68 hours, and now that it's done, I'd love to share the story of the second half of its journey with you. 

When last I shared an update, all the flat color had been painted and the mural was ready to be taken beyond the "bones" and fleshed out.

day 8:

on day 9, I started adding detail to the landscapes within the bodies... normally, I'd start with the top and work my way down, but as you might be able to tell in the photos, my scaffolding was the victim of some vandalism and the top level was unusable for a while. But, such is the nature of open air projects like this, and you have to just move along where you can. 

day 10: more landscapes; this mural has a LOT more architecture in it than I usually work with, which means this one will need a lot more measuring and a lot more tape. I use tape to "draw" my lines and keep my paint work straight. 
day 11: the scaffolding has been fixed! and just in time... I'm almost done with the body landscapes and ready to tackle the faces. (this is the fun part). 

day 12: unfortunately, I only got about this much painting done before the rain set in. I wouldn't find out for a few days, after the rain had cleared up, that when I left that day, the black paint actually RAN all the way down the mural; black streaks 30 ft long. sigh. 

day 13: The faces are all finished and the last steps are pretty simple--- outline the figures and then SEAL, SEAL, SEAL! Baltimore City murals are finished with an few coats of an Anti-Graffiti sealant-- like a liquid plastic-- which allows any graffiti to be more carefully cleaned off without damaging the paint below. This particular mural, was also being coated with a few layers of clear varnish, to protect the color. That's a lot of coats. Luckily, as it was the day before my vacation was to begin, my brother was in town AND my husband had the day off. So, between the three of us, we were able to cover the over 1900 sq ft in just a few hours. When we left that day, the wall looked like this:

all that was left was for the Acme Scaffolding folks to come and take the apparatus apart, and for me to patch the holes where the bars had been attached to the wall (and where the bare wall would now be exposed, sans paint). I came home from vacation to find the wall exposed, no metal in front of it for the first time in a month, and my work finally visible without any obstruction. I went back with a very tall ladder, a very long pole, and a very brave hubby, and we patched up all the bare spots. 

and today, this is what you'll find there: 

I hope you'll go visit it soon! I have a few other mural prospects on the horizons, so I'll keep you posted if and when there is any news to share. In the meantime, please find out more about the beautiful murals of Baltimore


shellydaly said...

Just a and your murals are AMAZING!

Kathy {Kathy Sews} said...

This is fantastic! Must go and see this!