Friday, September 24, 2010

How to Paint a Mural

Murals are exciting hand-painted over sized images painted directly to the surface of a wall or a ceiling. There are a few methods of which you can utilize to assist in painting a mural.

Utilize a projector to cast the image onto your wall. There are many projectors on the market. Shop for price and clarity. Explain to the salespeople at the electronics store that you are looking for a high quality projector to cast images onto large surfaces at a fairly close range. Projectors range anywhere from $1000.00 to Tens of thousands.

The internet is chock full of ideas and images. By utilizing a projector, you can capture a photograph, cast the image onto your wall, outline the the picture and begin to render with paint.

By having the image up on the wall, you can create a paint by numbers reference or simply color block color onto the wall. Some people prefer to make a color photo copy of the image being painted as a tangible reference guide.

It is up to you, but drawing a grid onto the photocopy and replicating the grid onto the wall is a great way for beginners to successfully execute the image. Oftentimes, even highly experienced artists prefer this methodology when painting several feet in width and height. It is easy to get lost or overwork areas when challenged with super size dimensions.

Establish your palette. Prior to beginning, you will have already purchased your paints for the project. However, blending paints will clearly create more colors for your palette. I like to pre-mix all of my paints and keep in an air tight container. I utilize acrylic latex and add a bit of floetrol or glazing liquid to the pigment enabling a smooth flow. Play with your paint and mix to the consistency of which you like.

Once the paint is mixed and ready for the project, I organize according to color and hues, i.e, all greens from dark green to sage green, navy blue to sky blue, etc...I have a bucket of rinse water and towels for my brushes.

At this point, you will utilize a 2 to 3 inch painting brush and block out your color. Make certain to feather out or blend the lines eliminating hard and unprofessional lines while blocking in color.

There are a plethora of mural brushes out there to utilize in painting your image(s). I personally enjoy utilizing three different types of brushes. A round or oval brush is generally used for 90% of your mural. The oval or round brush is used for blending, blocking in color, shadows, and even for details. The flat brush is for filling in large expanses, shadows, and detail lines. Then there is the angled brush. The angled brush enables the muralist to achieve precision lines. In murals, lines and shadows are what interpret the believability of your painting.

Be certain to NOT utilize anything that is copyrighted. Trust your interpretive abilities to deliver and execute the image. This is the creativity which makes a mural an interesting image to regard.

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