One of the things that is most enjoyable about mural painting is the diversity of things I get to create! A great example of this is a recent mural I did of a purple pineapple on an oven backsplash for clients who are renovating their kitchen.
Upping the difficulty level, the pineapple was replacing a previous mural and was painted on granite! The up-side of granite is that paint does not stick well, so removing the old mural just required soapy water and a little bit of elbow grease. The down-side, of course, is the fact that paint doesn’t stick well to granite – which also applied to my new mural!
The first step to address adhesion was to make sure I had the granite clean of all dirt and grease. With this addressed, my next step was to paint a base coat in the shape of the pineapple using a special bonding primer (I like to use a product called Stix) that sticks to just about anything – thankfully including granite.
The next challenge was doing the drawing on granite. When I do murals, I create a concept drawing and/or painting in advance to make sure my design matches up with what my client wants. Once I have approval on the concept, I photograph it and then project this image on the final surface so my mural exactly matches what the client wants and has approved. In this case, though, I discovered that you can’t see an image projected on dark granite!!
My solution here was to tape up a large sheet of poster-board and project the image at the final size on to the board. I could then map the outline of the pineapple on the board and cut out a template I could use as a stencil to lay down the primer. This worked perfectly! Once I had the shape of the pineapple painted in primer, I could then draw in the details on the dried primer coat to get ready for the final painting. Below is a picture of the primer stage.
With all of this done – I was on to the fun part of painting the pineapple! Since the mural is just the pineapple, I decided to maximize the impact by doing a realistic and detailed painting using acrylic paints.
And here is the purple pineapple on granite!