What to do,...the dogs are barking at everyone who walks in front of the house...And that disturbs the neighbors! This was a fun project!
My daughter and her husband have 5 dogs, yes 5 dogs. They love all of them like they were their kids. When the dogs are outside, they can see all the activity going on in front of the house, like people walking by.(or God forbid they are trying to walk their own dogs past the house!) and try to be a part of it from behind the fence, which adds up to a lot of barking. Sheri and Peter put a piece of plywood 8ft by 4ft, in front of the fence so the dogs couldn't see out, which worked pretty well. I always try to paint something when I visit my kids, I think it is my way of leaving a little piece of me there when I leave to go home. When I arrived, we decided to paint a mural on the plywood. I thought they would want some funky dogs on it, but I had done a bench with a similar scene to the one below, and they wanted it for their fence. So this is how it turned out.
I had lots of supervision to make sure I did it just right.
I started with painting the background. I primed it with some Interior/Exterior primer, and then started with the blues mixed in with some white and some red violet.
At one point it started thundering really loud...and I had all kinds of visitors to my painting area. They are all scared of the thunder except for the Brittany Spaniel, George. He just kept pacing wanting to be in on any action, but the other 4 couldn't get close enough to me! This is exactly where I am standing to paint. I kept straightening out the sheet I put on the floor for a drop cloth and then just gave up. LOL
So this is how it all begins. Background first, and then just start with whatever trips your fancy..mine is always the sun.
And then the tree. I seem to start to work from the outside in without really thinking about it.
Sheri had found this image of the little red bird and wanted it on there. It looks like some one is getting some instruction on life....
What a happy little guy, I love dragonflies.
Do you see the knothole in the tree? I incorporated one of the knotholes in the wood to make a knothole in the tree. I try to work with what ever surface imperfections there are, and make them into a part of the painting. You can also see a rough sketch of the bluebird at the bottom of the painting. I sketch out a few of the things like that so that I am not getting the dimensions wrong and having to erase marks on the painting. It is a lot easier to change them on paper first if you are not sure of the size you want.
And it is finished..almost.. I actually added a little worm and worm hole on the left side (you can see him in the picture above..), but forgot to take a picture of the whole thing again with him included. After it was all finished, I put 5 coats of Minwax Marine poly acrylic on (outdoor/exterior), making sure to coat the edges and top good. It should stand up to several years of weathering, I am not too worried since this is in South Carolina, and they don't get snow and frigid temperatures. If they poly it in a few years that will really keep it from weathering also.
My daughter was going to flip it over and poly the back after I left. It would need to dry for several days before setting it outside on the fence, So I do not have a picture of it nailed to the fence.
I bet it is going to be cool though, what do you think?
And then it was off to my favorite spot to see every time I visit my daughter, The Angel Oak Tree. It is so magnificent. If you are ever in Charleston, make sure you visit this spot. It is so awesome, it just takes my breath away.
I hope you have enjoyed the mural creation. If you have any questions, you can contact me in the comments here or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I am always happy to share any information. I can't promise it is always correct..but just what has worked for me.
Remember: The hardest part is always beginning.
"BE FEARLESS IN THE PURSUIT OF WHAT SETS YOUR SOUL ON FIRE."
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Have a fabulous weekend!!