As I experienced during my most recent project, I have come to enjoy restoring murals almost as much as creating them!
When my clients Jean and Peter explained to their interior designer Anne Langton that they had a mural that needed to be repaired, Anne called me to come check it out. The mural was originally painted in 1992 in a room of Jean and Peter’s house that began as a porch, but had been converted many years ago into a 4-season sitting room. Even at 25 years old, the mural was in great shape – except for the unfortunate damage caused by a recent leak in the ceiling. The water affected the walls as well as the ceiling, and the corner of the room would need to be re-plastered. Fortunately, Anne called me in before the plastering was done, so I was able to see the mural in the damaged area before it was covered over. In my first visit, I took pictures of the area that needed repairs and used my paint swatch books to match all of the various colors in the mural.
Once the plastering was complete, I came back to see some fresh white walls and other various patched areas that would need to be re-painted and blended to match the rest of the room.
I began along the ceiling of the damaged wall, making sure I had my paints mixed to match the off-white background as well as all of the subtle variations of color streaked over it. With these colors matched, I moved to the right corner where the damage was worst. Using my pictures, I was able to first re-create the breaks where the off-white blended with yellow and then into a light greyish-blue that is a continuation of water from the other side of the door. With the background painted, I was able to replicate the leaves that were once there – and added my own twist with a branch that balanced things out nicely. At the bottom of the corner, there was a distant mountain that needed to be replicated – and all of the areas needed a light wash of a taupe color to match the subtle patina of the rest of the mural.
There were a few other spots throughout the room that I touched up while I was there – and then I finished off by replacing the names of the original artists!
Jean and Peter were shocked and thrilled with the results… saying that it looked like I took a picture of the old mural and figured out how to stick the picture back up on the walls! Following are some shots to show the original (damaged) wall, how it looked when it was plastered - and then the final result.