Sunday, February 21, 2016

Mural #1 in Brillo de Sol done!

After more than two months without painting a mural, I was itching to get started on a new wall. There’s never a shortage of walls here in Guatemala, but finding financing is another story. The places I paint most of my murals at are usual schools or NGO’s that can barely survive, let alone afford a mural, as much as it is appreciated. So that’s why I’m always looking for people or institutions willing to sponsor a mural. I was lucky to find one for Brillo de Sol, an educational project in San Gaspar Vivar, on the outskirts of Antigua Guatemala. I’ve totally fallen in love with this project; it’s amazing to see all kinds of special needs children receive specialized education, but above all much love and attention. So I was thrilled to be able to start this mural, hopefully the first of many more to come.
When you visit Brillo de Sol, the first to greet you is probably Luna, the adopted dog and mascot of the school. Besides being a lovable presence, thanks to Luna the children learn about responsibility (they take turns feeding her) and how to take care of animals. Being a dog lover myself, it made sense that Luna would have to appear in the first mural, in the stairway leading to the second floor. Another model was quickly found on the Facebook page of Brillo de Sol: the cute little girl (Marcela) holding a rabbit was irresistible.
I found Luna willing to pose for some photos during my last visit to Brillo de Sol and I combined her picture with Marcela’s in a design I made in Photoshop. Then it was time to get the painting started, not an easy job since the wall was no less than 6.05 meters high. Fortunately enough I had help! Jerke Monu, a Belgian teacher in training is going to start his internship art Brillo de Sol in a few weeks and was willing to help me out. While I started the grid and copied the design, Jerke had the ungrateful job to balance on a rickety old ladder, painting the background from top to bottom with a roller attached to a long piece of PVC tube. Not ideal, quite scary actually, but it worked! Once the design was drawn and the background filled in, the rest was pure fun and within two days we were done. The kids and staff love it and are looking forward to the next murals. Since every class has its own name, the plan is to give them each their own mural. Next up are Los Gatitos (The Kittens). So yes, more sponsors are always needed!

Many thanks to Ilene Kradin for sponsoring this mural, Marcela and Luna for modeling, the staff at Brillo de Sol for all the support and of course Jerke for the hard work!

For more information about Brillo de Sol:
The Design
Jerke doing his magic
Jerke in front of the result
And this is it! 2.85 x 6.05m