MUCH paint has been slathered over the past 6 months, so here's a quick recap of my latest projects:
In November and December of 2016, I had the privilege of creating and painting at Bailey Elementary in Dublin, OH.
Originally, Bailey asked me to design for their gymnasium. They had a huge wall that could use some color, and the kids of the school had already decided they wanted to see animals being active, playing sports and such. So I created a design, and we were stoked to transform the space, BUT we ran into some snags with the lift. At the end of the day, a new plan needed to be made so we rerouted the mural destination to Bailey's Commons area. We stuck with the animal theme, but had the animals embody a more diverse group of activities.
Now the Commons area is where the kiddos eat lunch. It is the area that connects the classrooms to the "Specials" like Art, Music, and Gym class. So every day hilariously adorable elementary students would walk by me and tell me incredibly encouraging things like, "If I had a hundred dollars, I would hire you to paint my bedroom!" -or- "You're the best artist I have ever met!" -or- "Keep up the good work!" ... I may have felt a touch famous.
Though I was initially sad that the mural didn't make its way into the gymnasium, I am super pleased with its final destination. I got to interact with the students of Bailey, learning their names and the names of their teachers... which I wouldn't have been able to do if I was constantly up on a lift in a separate room.
Also, I love that the kids got to watch the entire process. Every day that they came in there was something new to see, and they got to ask me their questions. There is something so valuable about allowing a community to experience the development of a piece of art that impacts their space... It can demonstrate the value of patience and the importance of process and makes the idea of one day creating something large more tangible [rather than intimidating.]
Meanwhile, Bailey Elementary was already NEAR and DEAR to my heart before I painted the mural in their Commons area. You see, back in 2005, it was at Bailey that I created my first HUGE mural... now 12 years ago. It was literally the second mural of my career. The theme was "Wild About Reading" and displayed African animals enjoying a good book on a massive series of walls in their school library. What a privilege to be back at the school that gave me one of my first big opportunities!
In January 2017, the process began for me to create a colorful, hospitable mural for Avalon Elementary's entryway. Originally, a dark brick wall with an old trophy case took up the space, but Avalon wanted an upgrade that would brighten up the area in which parents and children happened to gather every day.
They ended up installing a large piece of flexible polycarbonate over the brick since they weren't able to paint directly onto the curvy wall. As for the design, it took a few attempts, but the feather fell on one that communicated to visitors what they could expect at Avalon.
In the center of the design, there is an image of the school with their mascot, the Eagle, flying above. To the left you can see kids learning and interacting with their peers and teachers via books and computers, as well as a young girl painting and children playing. To the right there is a depiction of the school's annual bbq, as well as an image of a "Watch Dog Dad" reading to students, and children playing instruments together.
The kids were amazed at the process, and while it was challenging to paint during school hours in such a high traffic area, it was well worth it!
SIGN YOUR ART
I was asked to participate in a city-wide art installation funded by the Greater Columbus Arts Council called, "Sign Your Art." Myself and other artists created our masterpieces on 6"x8" wooden tiles that are destined for a street sign somewhere in the city. Once all of the artworks are in place, they will spell the word "ART" in red pings on Google maps! How cool is that?!
AND... what's more... The community can participate in the creation of tiles as well! Along with each featured artist on their specific street sign, three additional tiles per sign will be added that have been created at The Columbus Arts Festival, June 6-8... truly, a community endeavor!
For my design, I looked up the word "Columbus" and found that it was derived from the Latin word meaning 'peace.' So I chose a dove - a common symbol for peace - and composed it intersecting with elements of the city... Depicting, in the end, a spirit of peace resting on our beautiful Columbus. May the peace our city carries be a signpost to the nations!
A RESIDENTIAL WORK
Just last week I finished up a project for a client in the Victorian Village area. The two main goals of the artwork were to 1) Disguise the door (can you find it?), and 2) Create something "floral, but not floral." As soon as I saw the space I thought of Charles Rennie Macintosh, a Scottish artist who made a lot of work in the Glasgow area during the Art Nouveau period.
I created a design that emulated and adapted CRM's stained glass work to accent the style of the home, putting the already-present color palette of the walls to use. The ceiling above the painting has a copper/bronzey finish, so I used metallic accents within the mural to tie it all together.
I am quite pleased with the finished product!
HARMONY PROJECT: "DREAM ON" MURAL
5-1-17 thru 5-5-17
(I write this post while this project is currently in the works...)
Every year, Columbus' awesome city choir - The Harmony Project - joins forces to make our city a little more beautiful and a little more united by partnering with local neighborhoods through service projects. One element of their community outreach for the past few years has involved the creation of large murals. This year, THREE Columbus Public schools get gorgeous murals designed by Jarvis Art Studios, and I have the privilege of assisting in the process of bringing one of them to life.
Myself and two other gentlemen (Michael Motter and Simon La Bozetta) have been assigned the oversight of the mural at South High School.
It's an awesome site to behold... Students of the school and volunteers from the choir descend upon the design which we have turned into a paint-by-number, and the massive image comes to life within DAYS.
Here are a couple of progress shots. At this point everything has been filled in, and we are looking to simply tighten up the line work.
Isn't it AMAZING?! :)
This girl has painted about 7-8 portraits in between all of these projects... some live, some from photo. I also painted a mural for a church Nursery room. And I developed some prints that will be sold as fundraising for a group's trip to Africa. Check out my Instagram account to see images of these!
Thanks for reading and following my journey. I look forward to sharing more soon!