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Mural Painting with the San Francisco Artists in Residence

Life is a Canvas

Just a short time ago, the San Francisco office was relocated, and with the new space came a whole bunch of blank walls. While we could have easily just thrown paint everywhere like some kind of hyper-color food fight, we thought it much better to ask Artists in Residence Nyki Way and Arielle Jovellanos to create something magical. Here are some photos of the finished murals, along with each artist talking about the process.

Land & Sea by Nyki Way

“I painted two murals, a smaller meeting room and a medium sized conference room. To begin my process, I made a mockup how I wanted the mural to look digitally. This gave me an idea of what would work best without having to lay any paint down.

With each mural I started with a base coat of how I wanted the color scheme to go. Painting like I do digitally, I added layer by layer, each one getting progressively darker as each layer comes forward. For the finishing touches, as seen in the forest mural, I used paint marker pens and tiny brushes, which allowed me to easily get the desired amount of detail.

One of the challenges was knowing exactly which paint would be best to use. It may seen like a good idea to buy budget or student grade paint, but it’s honestly worth it to splurge. The higher quality paints will spread much easier and save you so much time. It’s also good to pace yourself and take breaks. You’re either standing on a ladder for a long mount of time or crouched down, and this can cause all sorts of aches and pains. Lastly, take the time to protect the carpet and other areas you don’t want paint on. Artists tape is your friend.”

Work in progress of Lumberjack meeting room.

Finishing touches and tiny Lumberjack added.

  • Panorama of "Sea Room" Mural.

Gal Pals by Arielle Jovellanos

“I painted two vertical murals next to each other in the office space. Since I do sequential comic work professionally, it was suggested that the two murals be like sequential comic panels interacting with each other. I decided to draw two women talking to each other over the phone with word balloons.

I had never painted at a large scale before, so there was a lot of trial-and-error. First, I did a digital mock up, then I used a projector to help me sketch the mock up onto the wall. For one mural, I painted the base color first and then added lines on top. For the other, I did the line art first, and then filled them in with color, like a coloring book. From there, I added more detail and finishing touches.

It took me awhile to find a process and medium that worked well for my workflow. I’m more of a line-based artist so it was much more comfortable and faster for me to use paint markers versus brushes. When starting a mural, I’d definitely suggest testing different mediums to see what works for you first.”

Work in progress stages of first Gal Pal.

Finished Gal Pals with added quotes.

  • Gal Pal murals with a view of the city.

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