Earlier this month, following the fun of MerMay, I found myself being volunteered to paint a mermaid mural!
I was nervous, to say the least.
Firstly, I’m very much a watercolour artist. A dabble or two with gouache is about as adventurous as my paintings get, and this was going to require never-used-before acrylics!
Secondly, I’m very self conscious about my artwork. You may have noticed a lack of videos or photos of my works in progress, I just know I would mess it up if I have a camera on me, and this was going to be in a hallway with people constantly walking past! On top of that, I would be with my Mum, who taught me everything I know about art and is an amazing artist – no pressure…
Thirdly, my art is all quite small, normally A4 is about as large as it gets, so a wall is a pretty huge canvas!
Fourthly, it was for my lovely Gran, I did not want to mess it up!
So, me and Mum arrived with shiny new brushes and paints on one of the hottest days of the year to paint a little mermaid themed wall mural. We decided that Mum would do a bright, bold and beautiful sun and I would do the mermaid.
As I stood there with my pencil in hand, I had absolutely no idea where to start, not a clue. I was so nervous about getting it wrong, that I couldn’t figure out where to begin.
Luckily, Mum came to the rescue! She sketched out a shape for a rock for the mermaid to sit on and started to outline the mermaid tail. Once Mum had made those first few marks, I could finally see how it would and should look. I put my pencil to the wall and got sketching.
Mum, the fearless artist that she is, went straight in with the acrylics for the sun.
As Mum happily added yellows, oranges, reds and whites to the sun, I finished the sketch and finally moved on to the paints.
Honestly, I think it would have been easier to sketch over the whole wall rather than try to wrangle these acrylics into place – my gosh I found them so hard to use! Give me lovely watercolours any day! Then again, it’s not often you can draw and paint on walls without being told off by your Mum.
As we carried on painting, passers by stopped to have a look, offer us much-needed ice lollies and I’m happy/relieved to say, they all said nice things while we were in earshot!
By the time Mum had finished the sun and added three cute little white seagull v’s to the right hand side of the sky (which are weirdly, my favourite bit of the mural!), I was still mid-mermaid, so Mum made a start on the final part, our seaweed covered rock.
It took Mum as much time to do the rock as it did for me to finish the mermaid, and with that, we were finally done!
It was so lovely to spend the afternoon painting with Mum and although the mermaid isn’t perfect, she’s pretty cute! Mum’s sun is so bright and cheerful, and the subtle seagulls really make me smile! It was definitely worth being pushed out of my comfort zone to do it.
Although, I must confess, I made sure the acrylics went home with Mum rather than me!