As you all know, I am in Ireland working on a farm (mostly) and otherwise expending my efforts to keep warm. Douglas and Marlene own about 5 acres of land and both of their kids live nearby.
Jane (their oldest daughter) lives just down the street with her husband and 7-year-old, Joshua. Jane gave me a wonderful opportunity to paint one of the walls in her house. My first mural.
To be honest, I was a bit nervous about this. I am used to manipulating myself, or my canvas in different ways while I am working on something. If it is large, I might even place it on the floor. In San Francisco, my easel was a Foosball table. I am one of those painters who works flat, horizontal. Not vertically, if I can help it.
My other two mural-esque pieces were on canvas, so even though I started them on the wall, I had the option of taking them down and moving them around. This would not be the case here. This is a permanent installation. Every artist’s dream.
What attracted me initially to this project is that Jane loves blue. I knew immediately this would be successful. Blue and I just understand each other (as you may have gathered from earlier posts). But still, this was a learning process. I had my wall selected and over the course of a week or so I came up with a design.
This piece is going in Jane’s study (she is a lawyer, or as they call them here –a solicitor). However straight-edge that might seem. Keep in mind that I live on a self-sustaining, yoga, hippie retreat center. In speaking with “my client” she mentioned that her spirit animal was an eagle. Now, I don’t do realism well, but I arrived at a nice abstract idea of a feather.
Now, all I had to do was order the supplies and get to work. And so it began, and looked something like this:
I enjoyed this. A lot. And now that I have time to ruminate on why, I think it has 100% everything to do with my client. Jane was wonderful. Not only did she order my supplies for me, but she gave me unlimited access to the works space, AND gave me chocolate and popcorn as payment for my services. I can’t tell you how awesome it felt to go down to work and sip hot tea and eat Cadbury chocolate WHILE painting. Another key factor was that I had absolutely zero time constraints. Well, I guess if you count when I am scheduled to leave Ireland, that’s one. But for all intents and purposes, I could take as much time as I needed.
In case you are wondering, this took about 30 hours. I spread that out over something like 3 weeks. It was very fun. Here, enjoy some details: