Flower Explosion – downtown Redwood City mural
I am starting 2016 off with the largest mural I have completed yet. Close to 700 square feet, this wall features an explosion of flowers playing with scale, colors, patterns, and technique. I am one of five artists selected to paint a building along a commercial corridor in downtown Redwood City. The project is a public art initiative the city is investing in to clean up a once dull, dim, but still heavily trafficked alley. I was invited to the project shortly after I completed my utility box, which was a separate public art initiative.
The city came out to interview me and the other artist (Kristen) and put together this really nice video of our projects: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h8KE9VOs6Yw
I worked with the owner of Pickled Clothing on the mural concept. She pulled several images from my website she liked best which included my floral work. She really liked my utility box and had a sampling of additional images she shared with me to guide the inspiration for this wall. Once we decided on flowers, I made a trip to the San Francisco Flower Mart – cruising the stalls and vendors looking for unique flowers that really jumped out to me. I bought an interesting bouquet of flowers and took them home to sketch and photograph them. It is from these flowers that this wall was born – a mix of some of my favorites!
I decided to re-paint the entire wall, getting rid of the grey color. For the base coat, I used two different colors – the wall color is a light turquoise blue and with a lighter “wash” on top. I wanted to have a background that had some texture instead of being flat. The concrete wall already has nice texture that this lighter color grabbed onto. Even the base coat was a fun process!
I have experience using a scissor lift which came in handy again on this project. Due to the ground being not level, I also had to use a boom lift – which was a new experience. I started on the flowers up high to get them done first using the equipment rental, before moving down to the level where I could paint from a ladder or on the ground. One flower at a time, the design went up. I met a lot of wonderful locals who were very excited to see this work happening. Youll notice the boutique store owners store their garbage bins along the back wall. At one point, my solution was to build a wooden enclosure to hide the bins – which we did build – but unfortunately, the enclosures were composed of cheap materials and didnt even last six weeks.
I am very happy with how this beautiful wall turned out. Its happy, colorful, is an extension of my artistic voice, and has helped brighten up this part of town. I took the train to SF last week and this mural pops so well for all the commuters on board to enjoy. My wish for my work is to invite people to develop a deeper connection and appreciation with the natural world around us. Nature is the world’s best artist and we can learn a lot from her effortless growth on our beautiful planet. I look forward to painting more walls and creating more work large scale! I have fallen in love…there is nothing else I would rather do than work on my creations and further developing the world of What Meg Creates!
Thank you to Redwood City and your efforts in fostering public art opportunities within our community!