Wednesday, May 30, 2012

forever YOUNG Mega-Mural Progress Report

The computer-generated mock-up of 'about' how the mural will look...
After an intense first day of construction, the temporary frame for the massive (and I don't use that word lightly) is well underway. Now that the project is just beginning to physically materialize, I am beginning to appreciate that this will require some super-human endurance and focus to complete within our time-frame. 

But you know what? After I finished my last large mural at Sacred Heart Chaldean Catholic Church in Saskatoon, I declared to myself, "Self, there is no project too large after this." 

Well, I don't want to start an argument with myself, but this mural project at Young is a truly formidable undertaking.

If this doesn't put mural-painting on the map in this locale, then I will re-draw the freaking map!
My extremely able-bodied assistant Sherwin Peterson...a Viking giant...engaged in laying out the partial frame on the floor of our work-space in Young; the local hockey rink.
In order to proceed with this over-size monstrosity, it is necessary to first construct a temporary frame on which to hang the fifty-two four foot by eight foot panels. A big part of a project on this scale is material management and co-ordination. While there are certain things that can be done to for efficiency, there is no getting around the fact that the total weight of the panels alone will exceed three thousand pounds. In order to ensure zero tolerance registration from panel to panel they must be affixed to a frame aka huge stud wall inside the shop. Once the panels are actually painted- a far off dream at the moment- they will be systematically transferred to their permanent steel frame outside.

See that man the size of a bug in the upper right-hand corner? Gives you an idea of the rather imposing scale. 
 In fact, this sixteen foot by eighty-four foot frame represents just the bottom two-thirds of the mural. As you see from my computer-generated mock-up, there are numerous appendages that will soar above the roof-line of the arena to present against the clear blue sky. I am a big proponent of breaking out of the regular rectangle for added visual dynamism.

This is me wondering, "What have I gotten myself into?"

After the first section of frame was erected I decided to climb up for a photo. This sixteen by sixteen foot section represents a mere ten percent of the overall mural. Am I frightened? No, not really...just very excited to get on with it.

Stay tuned for regular updates in this space that will chronicle every step of this project from construction to painting through to its completion and ultimately the official unveiling in the fall of 2012. This might be a good time for you to subscribe to this blog, as I will be posting at least once a week. You don't want to miss this.

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