Where the Wild Things Are.......are you familiar?
It's a picture book that is older than I am....which is just plain OLD! Lol! Just kidding!
It was written in 1963....and has since been adapted to the movie screen as well as a Broadway production!
What does this have to do with painting???
EVERYTHING......as I was asked to create a feature wall for a boy's bedroom that is themed around this children's tale.
Wait until you see my Where the Wild Things Are wall mural...
I began with a large solid wall painted in Sherwin Williams Poppy Seed...which is a lovely charcoal gray...which is about to change! However, having a dark background does help the overall look by adding natural depth and shadows.
I highly recommend taping down plastic sheeting to protect your floors and carpets! There is a lot of water runoff with this technique. You also need a large number of rags or even old large towels to catch the water as it makes its way down the wall. I suggest a painting partner....to catch the water below. I have never done this project alone and never intend to. It's a lot of work controlling the runoff.
I'm including a short little time-lapse of the actual process. There really is no true technique. Just lay down the paint in sections and spray with water to encourage movement. Start at the top of the wall and work your way down.
What IS important is the type of paint you use. The actual wall is painted with latex and that works fine. But for the artistic movement of paint....you need to use a clay-based mineral paint like Dixie Belle. The minerals work beautifully with the water...and allow the paint to blend and move naturally.
I worked from left to right....and top to bottom...in sections about 2.5-3 feet wide.
I then began creating the birch trees.
I drew them onto the wall with a piece of chalk....not worrying about a specific pattern or size. I was just free with the shape and form of the trees. I left the center open based on the plan for the room design such as wall art and a storage shelf.
You can see a time-lapse video here of me actually painting some of the trees.
And here you can see a video from left to right....of the completed wall.
The wall art was a simple handmade project that the mom already had. I love the rustic feel of it...and think it looks so good on the feature wall! I don't think we could've had a better outcome. Wall art has the ability to completely transform a room, and that's why I love it. In fact, my friend is currently thinking about having her own wall art but with a twist. "Print Picture Tiles of my loved ones" is what she's going to do, and I love that idea too. What's better than having pictures of your loved ones in every room you walk into? Nothing beats it, except this beautiful handmade project that my mom gifted me with. When it comes to wall art, the options are endless.
And here is the final view of the wall with the wall art!
I hope you will find this project inspiring. Remember....this technique is very similar to the water technique I use on furniture. You could practice on a piece of wood first.....and as your confidence improves you can move to walls or furniture! This particular wall took us about 2.5 hours to complete. Not too bad considering the impact it has on the room design! Stay tuned for the final room reveal.....I"m just waiting on the momma to get everything put together!
Working on this project has made me think about how much fun it must be to illustrate books for children. There are no limits, and your artwork can be as colourful and as creative as you want it to be. I just wish there were some children's book illustration jobs in my area as I would love to try illustrating a book one day. Who knows, I might just have to write and illustrate a book of my own. I could even write it from the comfort of my home! What do you think? What are some of your favorite illustrations from books for children? Let me know in the comments.