Just one day before this season's first snowfall, I completed my 4-storey mural as part of the Church Street Mural Project in Toronto. As temperatures dropped to an icy 0 °C, I worked long hours to put every last stripe of gold paint on the brick wall. It was the first mural I have ever painted and what a journey it was!
The mural took over 24 cans of paint (all different colours), 16 rolls of tape, 20 paintbrushes (used many times over), 4 buckets, 6 rollers (also washed many times over), 2 paint trays, 4 levels of scaffolding, 1 paint sprayer, 1 very long rope, 1 very long extension cord, 1 hairdryer (yes, you heard that right), 2 angle levels, 1 tsquare, 1 measuring tape, 1 laser mouse, 1 roll of "caution" tape, 2 neon pylons, 2 tarps, 1 step stool, 1 ladder, numerous rags and newspapers, 4 pairs of work gloves, 2 pairs of knee pads, 1 pair of coveralls, numerous layers of clothing, 2 hats, 3 socks, and most important of all, 7 volunteers... you get the point. It was a production!
Perhaps one of the nicest moments of the process was on one cold Sunday afternoon. I was about about halfway into my mural, when I was contemplating a day of clambering up the scaffolding to begin marking diagonal lines across brick and windows... It was an impossible job for just one person to do, yet no one else was available to help. And the weather in Toronto had turned cooler. Was I going to be able to see this project through?
And then the universe sent me a message in the form of a complete stranger, Christopher Rouleau, who had heard of this project through one of the curators.
Chris was a blessing to me that day - and for many other days. I would not have been able to complete this project without his kind, generous and consistent help.
Chris is also a creative soul. He is a talented graphic designer and typographer who has recently launched some new products on his online store, one of which is a gorgeous black and gold lithograph titled "Be Kind." Chris, thank you for living your words.
I would also like to thank: the many businesses in the Church Wellesley community for their support of my project, particularly Ho's Team Barbers and Novack's Pharmacy; the curators of the CSMP, Syrus Marcus Ware and James Fowler for thier dedication and vision and the organizers of this project; Counsellor Kristyn Wong-Tam, Sheila and Tristan from the City of Toronto for their hard work and many long hours of preparation, the project sponsors and of course all the other artists who were also a part of the Church Street Mural Project. Without them, there would be no murals!