July 26, 2007

Adding colour

Painting clouds

After I came home from painting the mural with my daughter on Monday, I kept thinking of things we could have done differently. When I woke up the next morning, I could tell my daughter had been thinking about it too.

Daughter: Know what we should do?
Me: Buy a can of yellow paint.
Daughter: Exactly!
Me: That way, we could make green.
Daughter: And I want to add more clouds.
Me: Maybe we need red too.
Daughter: I could make kind of a pinkish glow around the clouds.
Me: And I could make purple.
Daughter: Purple?
Me: Remember those huge waterlily pond paintings we saw in Famous European City? If you looked close, the water had all kinds of colours in it.
Daughter: Well, we're definitely in the same category as Claude Monet.
Me: Well, we should at least have the whole palette.

As we drove to her apartment this morning, we discussed our plans for the second round of painting.

Me: I want to work on the water and the shoreline. Make it more interesting.
Daughter: Interesting? Do you mean weird?
Daughter: I don't want it to be weird.
Me: What's wrong with weird?
Daughter: It's a wall mural.

As we began to paint, someone in the apartment above turned on some loud music. Some song I didn't recognize, although my daughter did.

Daughter: Oh, that must be Guy Upstairs.
Me: Do you have his cell phone number?
Daughter: What?
Me: We could make a request. Like ... some kind of music that I would like.
Daughter: I don't know him that well.
Daughter: And I doubt he's got any Joni Mitchell.

Me: Hey, too bad we know nothing about perspective.
Daughter: Yeah, the footsteps on the beach are life-size.
Me: And the sailboat is like four inches high.
Daughter: What do you think I should do with the clouds?
Me: Well, I'd get rid of that long one. It's way too phallic.
Daughter: I'll cut it in half.
Me: I'm adding purple to the waves. And some white spray.
Daughter: What about this?
Me: Make the clouds overlap.

Daughter: Why are you painting over the sailboat?
Me: I have to make a new one. There's a wind now, and it needs to be heeled over.
Daughter: Why do you keep making those noises?
Me: It's the sound of waves crashing. To keep me in the mood.
Daughter: The sun is setting over here.
Me: Oh, I like the pink.
Daughter: What's the dark blob?
Me: It's a rock. I'm adding some rocks. Otherwise, it doesn't make sense that the waves are crashing.
Daughter: Hey, this is looking good.
Me: For our first mural, it's not bad at all.
Me: Maybe instead of going to grad school, you should go into business with me. We could be mural artists.
Daughter: And go around painting murals for college students?
Me: Yep. This is fun. I'll quit my job, and we can paint murals for a living.
Daughter: That sounds like a realistic plan.


Here's the mural, or at least, the left side of it. Unfortunately, when I uploaded the photo to Flickr, the colours on the mural ended up getting washed out, although the quilt and pillowcases stayed bright. Boy in Black looked at the photo and said, "It looks like an ad for bedsheets."

Like any great work of art, the mural really has to be seen in person.



*smiling at the bedsheet ad comment*

I really like this mural. My husband is going to paint me at least a mural for my kitchen at some point...he has a secret plan for what it will be of but won't tell me.

chichimama said...

It is fabulous!!! Do you hire yourselves out? I have a wall in my kitchen that is calling out for a mural...:-).

Suzanne said...

So cool! You guys do good work.

Pilgrim/Heretic said...

Awesome clouds! I'd hire you two any day.

Girl said...

Wow...I am super impressed.

Great job!

Artist Friend said...

I like it, and what a cute photo of Miss Wonderful. I have to admit, though, that the comment about cutting the too-phallic cloud in half gave me the willies and was completely unnecessary. You put that in on purpose, by the way. I know you did!

Cathy said...

I thought the same thing as commenter #6 about the phallic/cutting in half.

Great mural! I think you all could make a living painting those!

Sue said...


jo(e) said...

Artist Friend: Well, of course I put that in on purpose. I may not know how to paint, but I do know how to write.

Cathy: Thanks for the vote of confidence, but I'm not quitting the day job just yet ....

Rev Dr Mom said...

Awesome! I am very impressed

Sarah Sometimes said...

that is one super mural. now I really really want to go to the beach....

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Would you believe that, upon reading this post, I immediately reached to the CD player and hit "play" on Joni Mitchell's Hits?

Songbird said...

Love it!

Abby said...

ooooh, it's fabulous!

Nadine said...

I am also quite impressed. I don't think my stick figures would make good murals...

Colleen said...

I wish I could make my entire house a mural! You guys did a wonderful job!

RageyOne said...

very nice!

Yankee T said...

Oh good grief. Is there ANYTHING you and your kids cannot do? I think not. If Older Daughter and I attempted this, it would look like who-did-it-and-ran.

SusieJ said...

Wow. What a project -- and completed with good memories. Awesome.

dr. zombieswan said...

I too am most impressed by the clouds. Good clouds are hard to get without looking too cute.

What Now? said...

How fun! Sounds like the key to this project was finishing one "draft," sleeping on it, and going back to revise. And the result is such a great mural!

julieunplugged said...

Are you kidding! It's fabulous. :) I love your family.

Lorianne said...

I love it! Thank you for satisfying our "show me" impulses.

BerryBird said...

The mural looks fabulous, Jo(e). Think of all that hidden mural-painting talent, untapped all these years. Maybe this will be a project the younger boys will want to emulate in their bedrooms at home? I hope so, because it's been great to read about.

Rana said...

"It looks like an ad for bedsheets."


the comment about cutting the too-phallic cloud in half gave me the willies

AF, shouldn't that comment have done exactly the opposite? *smirks*

ccw said...

I love the mural! It just looks so fun. What a great way to liven up her room.

Bridget said...

cracking up at teh conversation- and the mural turned out great. B in B was right about the last photo though.

KLee said...

I love it! It looks really nice.

And your daughter's "I doubt he has any Joni Mitchell" cracked me the hell up. That would have earned her at least a tossed pillow in her general direction, I would say. :)

Wayfarer Scientista said...

The mural reminds me of the book "Going to the lighthouse" by Virgina Wolf. Well done! (And I luv those sheets.)

niobe said...

Nice sheets. And the stuff painted on the wall is very pretty too.

liz said...

HOLY GUACAMOLE! That's fireplacing beautiful.

Peter said...

Wonderful painting!I knew that you're queen of photography, but just now I realized that you rocking in the paintings too...Great ya, keep it up.
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Mieke said...

I think I am really going to miss not having a daughter. The boys - they leave. I am reminded of this all the time.

BeachMama said...

Fabulous job! It will be such an inspiration throughout the school year :)

Teri said...

umm, if the two of you ever want to take a trip to Midwestern City with at Least One Tall Building, I'll buy paint and set you loose on a wall in my house! And then I'll make you dinner. :-)

Lilian said...

The mural is awesome!! I particularly like your interactions with your daughter, which make me super jealous yet again for a daughter.

You two made me feel like painting. Maybe in out next house! :)

Anonymous said...

That mural is awesome! The next time you are in Southern City Whose Symbol is a Phoenix, I would like to hire you for your mural-painting abilities.

Anonymous said...

very nice