Friday, May 16, 2008

Painting a tree

A couple of weeks ago I posted about my awe of the gorgeous mural Redmag painted in her nursery. I love the feel of this tree and can't get it out of my mind. Green with tree-envy I set out to recreate it in our nursery.

How to create a Tree Mural

An image to paint
Data Projector or other means to 'get the image on the wall'
A pencil, I used a 2B, but with my time over would use a lighter one
An eraser
About 300ML of wall paint - I used a 500 ml tester tub Dulux Smooth Beech
A 5mm and 25mm paint brush
Masking tape
Drop sheets
A breathing mask for fumes if pregnant

Using a data-projector I traced the tree on the wall, there is something divinely devious drawing on a clean wall, it is one of life's untold pleasures to deliberately take a writing instrument to your walls, I highly recommend it.

It was difficult to get it to the right size, the room isn't wide enough for a large enough image straight on. But through some creative tracing and painful arranging of the projector eventually covered it all. I used a 2B pencil to trace it all, I worked left to right, starting at eye level. I soon found I was smudging it with my wrist though, so my time over I would use a lighter pencil than 2B and start at the top left, and try to work down and to the right.

I left it at this point and came back to it another day - your arms are very tired by this point!. I also embarked on a mammoth paint selecting mission. My wonderful Husband was barracking for a strong wood colour while I originally envisaged a neutral tone. After debate of this for some time and collecting every brown paint chip Bunnings had to offer we agreed on smooth beech, a soft tone as I desired and brown for him. I'm quite happy with it now.

Then on my 3rd trip to Bunnings, I left with not just paint chips - but paint! And brushes! I set the room up with old picnic blankets masquerading as drop sheets, masking tape on the skirting boards, a fan and all the windows open.

Then the painting began! Using the smaller brush I started at the top to avoid the smudging issue, I tried to keep my strokes long and even. I generally brushed in from the tips, but found brushing slowly outwards gave a lovely end to the branch. Generally the paint covered the pencil marks, but when it is properly dry I will attempt to wash/erase some marks left from where I went off the plan.

Finally I used the thicker brush to cover the trunk and thicker branches. I used the thin brush again to neaten the edges of the trunk and 'voila - A tree is born!'

I think I will thicken the trunk at the top, I still think the original is better, but I am quite pleased with it, plus it was fun to do!

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