The road leading to virtues is a life journey, wrought with twists, turns, obstacles and scary choices. They guide us to living joyful, contributing lives, from a “True-North” perspective. Do these words paint images in your your mind? They do for these two youngsters who will be painting a mural on a twenty square foot canvas for their school to enjoy and be inspired by. How did all this happen?
Every year, our Chicago area painting and decorating company participates in a community project as a thank you for all our blessings. These projects have included painting the sets for local theatre companies, the painting of mural scenes on public benches, among many others. This year’s event is special in that it involves working with children in creating a unique piece of art that is expressive of their views on life. The mural project was conceived by our company as a raffle item at a large gala held earlier this year as a fundraising event for Science & Arts Academy of Des Plaines, Illinois. The mom who won the raffle passed up an $8500 Rolex to get the mural project for her daughter and her best friend. That was some inspired mom, with a clear sense of her “True North”!
Last Saturday, the two moms brought their daughters to the school for their first session with us. The purpose of that meeting was twofold. First, we introduced them to the history of murals going back to the cavemen, with modern examples of how murals meet people’s needs today, taken from our inventory of completed mural projects. The second part was a brainstorming session with Rita, our Color and Concept Consultant (and my wife) and Fran, our Muralist. In their interactions with the girls, they were able to facilitate the articulation of the kids’ vision for their mural. As the girls were speaking about their views on virtues, our muralist was capturing their thoughts with sketches. At the end of the session, we had a rough sketch of the mural, a list of the mural elements and yes: homework!
Below are some of the elements the girls came up with for their mural: two hands holding a compass, winding path, gate, obstacles, storm clouds, rain, lightning, sun, flowers, wolf and animals. They already completed their first post-meeting assignment. They met last week to find inspiration pictures online for their various painted elements. They even found one for the two hands holding a compass! At their next meeting, they will redo the preliminary sketch developed in the first session. Part of their homework assignment also includes their keeping a journal of their discoveries and learning during the mural project. Stay tuned for more updates on their exciting mural painting project!