Ann Arbor, MI
I've been documenting all these projects in reverse chronological order (which in hindsight was pretty stupid, because they're listed in chronological order), and I've mentioned on numerous occasions how X project was the largest I've created to date.
Well, at the time, this was the largest mural I had ever created. The reason I mention this so much, is because last year was a tremendous year of firsts, which also meant it was super stressful and challenging. But also awesome.
This project was one of the most stressful for me because it's the first project I've done where "I messed up". I didn't actually mess up, but life happened. Check the video.
We got hit with a crazy storm out of the blue that melted my mural.
Seeing this destroyed me. I didn't know how to handle it. I was so stressed, and upset, and pissed, and all the negative feels. I also thought I couldn't overcome it. That this was my first mural failure.
The piece had a deadline too. It had to be completed that day, so that staff and guests could see it as a surprise the next day when they opened for business.
I wanted to "buff" the work, paint it all black, and come back another day to paint white line work over it. But Noah problem solved it. He and Lincoln (Tommy York's son) decided they would cut in the melty parts with white paint while I finished the black line work in between bouts of rain (we got hit with two separate downpours).
So I got to stay true to my work, and they helped me complete the painting to make the deadline.
This is the result of our hard work. A triumph of a painting at York. If you walk up close to it, you can see what I call the scars. You can see where the paint bled. It's faint, but it's there, and it's what makes this such a powerful piece.
It's not perfect. It's full of pain and struggle. And for that, I cherish it.
I decided after completing the work that I wanted to take it a step further. I collab'd with Electrifly (a local company specializing in AR) to create a AR filter for IG.
So with that filter, you could take photos (and still can) of yourself inside one of my paintings. So cool.
It was the first AR mural in Ann Arbor, and I'm so excited to create more innovative work like this.