Winging It: Mural artist Larry Crawford works on a giant mural that now adorns the concrete slope along the District’s Library Loop Trail.
There’s more public art on display in Westchase District and this time mural artist Larry Crawford is thinking big. How big? Well, his latest mural depicting six butterflies is about 80 feet wide by 30 feet tall. “It’s the biggest single project I’ve done by myself,” said Crawford, owner of Mural Arts. “If you’re walking the trail, you won’t be able to miss it.”
The mural is painted along the District’s Library Loop Trail between Rogerdale Road and Walnut Bend Lane, just north of Richmond Avenue. At the junction where the flood control channel next to the trail turns south, the butterfl y mural decorates the north concrete slope. Earlier this year, Crawford painted six city utility boxes in Westchase District with “muralitos,” of various animals and objects.
Minus weather delays, the project took about eight days to complete. For this mural, Crawford estimates he used about 45 gallons of primer, paint and a clear coat finish. Any secret ingredients?
“I simply use Behr Premium Plus outdoor exterior paint from Home Depot,” he said. “It stands up to the weather really well, plus I know people will be walking and sitting on the mural taking pictures, so the image needs to be able to take some abuse.”
Crawford said he’s not too worried about the mural being defaced by graffiti. “Throughout my career, I’ve found that most people who tag structures respect my art and what I’m trying to do and they leave it alone,” he said.
What’s next for Crawford? “I’ll be painting three more traffic signal control boxes in the District,” he said, “plus I’m redoing one that was ruined when the city replaced the box. It was a bummer to lose the artwork, but hey, at least it keeps me working.”
Mural Debut Celebration December 2
You can come celebrate the official debut of the mural at “Wings Over Westchase,” Friday, Dec. 2 from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. Parking is available in the visitors area at 10700 Richmond Avenue. Enjoy breakfast, music, chalk art for kids and photo opportunities with both the mural and mural artist.
For more info, send an email to Louis Jullien.