May-June Art Project: Street art in Chinatown!

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Quick shot of the early stages to painting: Priming then doing a rough under painting.

This Spring I have signed up to participate in Chinatown Blossoms at the school I work at. In partnership with the Chinatown Business Improvement Association (BIA), artists work to revitalize and beautify the commercial district by conducting a large public street art project:

Abandoned windows, window frames and doors will be transformed into mini-murals; themed after Chinatown’s motto A multicultural village with an Asian flavour.

Side note: Mini-murals should be taken lightly, as some of us have very large wall spaces to fill!

I’ve been busy away painting in the sun the past 2 weeks, but I wanted to talk about how I got here first. I’ve always wanted to paint on a street wall and I needed something to keep me occupied and on my feet. When I heard they were doing this again this year, it seemed like perfect timing. I signed up! This project is very much set in a art commission setting. The first month (May) was largely spent with consultations with both the BIA and the business (client) that I decided to work with. Followed by designing pitches and putting together a maquette of sorts or presentation panels.

Here is one of my pitch panels: (The colours are a bit off in the photo) This shows my design for the front of the business. I was uneasy about painting a window, but they really wanted it painted. In the end I came up with this idea that the window could look like a Chinese cabinet. The negative spaces near the top I will keep unpainted so that sunlight can still shine through. IMAG2138-1

I also made pitches for 3 panels on their side exterior wall, more on that later…

Anyway, my designs were accepted! Afterwards it came down to a lot of planning, from budgeting, purchasing paint, and preparing masks and grids to have my design fit to scale. Next is actually going out to paint it! Stay tuned!

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