Friday February 1st at 5 PM - 7 PMJefferson-Madison Regional Library201 E. Market Street, Charlottesville, Va. 22902
Feb 5 - Apr 8, artwork will be displayed on the 2nd floor hallways to the Lab and Cancer Center and on the 3rd floor hallway to the Family Birthing Center. The theme is "Calm Reflections". Anyone can view the artwork any day 8-9.
Members participating: Randy Baskerville, Terry Coffey, Joan Dreicer, Judith Ely, Sara Gondwe, Anne Hopper, Julia Kindred, Amy Shawley Paquette, Shirley Paul, Barbara Ryan, Juliette Swenson, Barbara Wachter.
art above by Joan Dreicer
artwork banner L-R: Amy Shawley Paquette, Barbara Wachter and Shirley Paul
“Art for me is a process of experimentation, discovery, design and color. My goal is to create art that is inspiring and a delight to the eye of the viewer. I create with a Mixed Media genre new to the Art World, i.e., using melted crayons and fabric paint. Shaving crayons onto a canvas, a household iron is used to melt, combine and shape the colors in a pleasing way. The side of the iron and the pointed end of the paint tube become my brush. Bright colors, a 3-D effect, action, texture and a lot of passionate fun culminate in a work of art”.
Gondwe, a self-taught artist, gets in touch with her heart and with Nature to create beautiful art. Trees, mountains, and sky are her themes. As an abstract artist, imagination leads her to paint underwater caverns, a conference of fishes, dragons, zebra trees or imaginary insects. "The March of the Dancing Zebra Trees" won Best in Show at the Fluvanna County Annual Art Show in 2015. The judge said its merit was in the artist's unique style of painting. In 2018, "The Healing Tree" earned the Artist Choice Award at the annual show of the Page Valley Arts Council in Luray.
I have finished the mural at the car wash. It was quite an experience. I did enjoy the physical nature of the whole process. And it was fairly cold a lot of days by the time the scaffolding was up. The contract had required the company hiring me to have the scaffolding put up for me. My husband was a huge help. I hadn't realized that the rented platforms had to be moved around from section to section. He did that. And he also refused to let me be there alone since I was so high up. He was afraid I'd back up to look and step off the platform. Gradually, he realized that I was okay.
It was the heavily pitted concrete block which made up the wall that was the challenge. I ended up using rollers with brush work to smooth edges. And after the grid was set up with contractor's pigment line I did the outline in a midtone gray. Then working on the stars section took quite a while. My husband actually did a lot of the stripes for me as I told him which section was what color while I carefully painted the white stars. Anyway, all of the work painting it went well. It took about six weeks of selected decent weather days (45+ degrees C. and no wind or rain).
I framed the painting I had made of the mural at the beginning for the company at their request after the mural was done.
There is actually soooo much more to this project with all of the paint purchasing, color mixing ( 25+ containers of shades of various colors established by ratio), materials to work with. I am not detailing all of that process here.
My prayer is that the mural will depict the feeling of people in our country working together and getting along. The faces of the first responders will be showing diversity racially. (Diverse ethnicity to be understood.)
Next, I made numerous sketches to figure out what might work. I sent the images of my ideas to Rex. The first image was of the off white car wash wall with the darkened windows located at the lower part of it so that they could see the size of the mural they had requested in relation to the whole wall. All was shown on that sketch in correct proportion to the finished mural wall. That is very helpful to get certainty that the finished mural is exactly what is wanted.
Then I finalized what they preferred in a sketch and created a painting by planning the appearance of the wall mural to match it, all the while sending images for color agreement and any small preferences at this point.
Thirdly, I prepared a contract and met with Rex to share it and be sure that all was agreeable.
I want to share my experience that I have recently had with mural painting in Charlottesville. This is my third mural opportunity but first one to be outdoors.
Here are some thoughts on the experience. First of all, I love the physicality of the work. Climbing on ladders and scaffolding does not bother me. And I enjoy working outdoors. Secondly, I don't mind the paint-by-number aspect of actually painting what is planned on the wall which follows the preliminary painting of the scene. These are two considerations which anyone who might want to do mural painting should keep in mind.
I began by meeting with the Tiger Fuel representative, Rex Legg, to survey the location, a car wash on a busy city street. Deciding the size and location on the wall was to be the hiring party's choice, of course, but offering advice is a big help to them for what may actually work and will look good. I came away from the meeting with an idea of the size and of what the party wanted on the wall which was a mural of the American flag and silhouettes of first responders. I took photos of the location to gain perspective of the project.
Here are a couple of images of the beginning of the work.