Web Design, Murals, Fine Art, Faux Finishing

Painting Small Murals

Faux wood grain, Trompe loeil table, murals by Arthur Morehead
Faux teak wood table and marble floor

I absolutely love painting small murals!

All artists have their own way of releasing their creative energy.  Some do it through thumbnail sketches, others will try out new or different mediums and will even take on a whole new art form just so they can continue to grow.

Personally I like painting small murals that are connected to a theme of some sort as most of you know from my latest post of my  Wine Room Mural.

I  started another project that involves a 25 ft. long hallway that not only has a small landscape mural in a 4 ft x 4 ft. arched niche at the far end but also has a barrel ceiling. What better way to accent painting a small mural than to accent it with a barrel ceiling

This client has somewhat of a Tommy Bahama and an Old Florida feel, but with a very nice addition of Handmade Teak Wood Furniture and carvings that are made by artisans in Bali from reclaimed teak wood and various other species of exotic woods that are imported by a business acquaintance of mine who just so happens to be my neighbor next to

my studio location,

located at 25987 South Tamiami Tr. in Bonita Springs Fl

James Ross of Rumah Saya

referred this client to me because of my ability to work with several techniques to bring this hallway together based on all the elements that adorn this home’s interior as well as the exterior.

The Project

The home has an open airy feel to it that leads out to a huge lanai to some wonderful Florida landscaping features that in my opinion was very well done so as to look natural and not over planned as I have seen in past projects.

At hand is a 25 ft hallway with a barrel ceiling starting at a lower level of 7 ft or thereabout that is off the family room and needed to be “included” to the rest of the homes exterior feel and with a ceiling at seven and a half feet it surely was going to be a challenge.

There were two things that were definite, actually three, The Mural, Bamboo, and Pineapples. So starting with these elements I started to put together a plan for this Theme Room or should I say Theme Hallway.

No matter what you call it I love the fact that they chose me for the challenge and already I have started putting things together

hallway mural by Art-Faux Designs 239 296 7966 call for shipping
Mural started in the studio

I love painting small murals on canvas at the studio within my own element because I have no clocks, no phones, and most times it’s just myself and my very loud music, according to my neighbors.

I installed the painted mural at the end of the hall and will finalize the other elements such as the pineapples and the trompe l’oeil elements

Painting Small Murals, landscapes
After install

You can see when painting small murals how much of a difference the lighting makes when painting them in one light and installing them in yet another, which is why I like to add the final details after the install

Small Murals, tompe loeil bamboo
Adding the trompe loeil bamboo

As we step further away from the small mural you can see where I need to kick up the intensity. Adding the Trompe loeil bamboo on the barrel ceiling is at the beginning stage at this point and I did add the shadows before being called to my next scheduled project. We have decided to add much more to this project called

Painting Small Murals

Update 5/03/2011

I am back from my Faux Stone Columns Project and have a few more images in regard to this project to add to bring you up to date

Before leaving I sketched a continuation drawing for the client of what I thought should be added to complete the  “feel” of this hallway that has turned into more of a “theme room” project, but of course, with most clients, it is hard for them to visualize the result so I painted it.

Small murals, Florida muralists, How to paint murals
Adding Trompe Loeil

The case of the “Floating Pineapples” has been solved

Yeah I know it sounds silly but I couldn’t resist. No one ever said I was very good with words but that’s what’s great about an artist being able to coin the phrase artistic freedom

trompe loeil table, Naples Fla muralists,
I love artistic freedom

So now that the pineapple problem has been solved to make it even more convincing I blocked in the background and brought in the basic shadow areas on the table legs. I do realize of course that the shadows need to be much darker in value but I still am going to wood grain the table and add a couple of drawers. Right now it is a crude design but if you have ever seen “hand made teak furniture” made by Bali artisans you would understand where I am going with this table design.

For what started out to be painting small murals for a niche has now actually grown into something much larger. I felt without these additions the mural would have looked unfinished and would have appeared as “Just another mural”

I hate to think of myself as just another muralist…

Yeah I also know that vanity is a killer for most businesses also

Faux stone block, Naples mural painters, Art-Faux Designs 239 296 7966
Adding some faux stone block

The next thing that was included in my updated sketch was that I felt the painting small murals were not bordered which to me gives an art piece a sense of completion such as a frame for instance. I do realize of course that my blocks on the sides are much smaller than the ones at the top but there is a reason for it which I will reveal when the timing is right.

And of course, we can not forget we have to tie the table down by continuing the existing flooring onto the wall in correct perspective to make it appear as though the whole concept gives you the feeling that you can walk to the end of the hallway throw you’re key’s on the table and cut yourself off a hunk of that pineapple.

Faux finish tile, trompe loeil tile floor,
Correct perspective very important

With everything starting to come together painting this small mural you can really see how much more I was seeing as an artist and how by adding these other elements are starting to work with the small mural and will leave you with a picture of where I am so far

Small mural, Art-Faux Designs Naples mural, Naplels
Small Mural Update 5/04/2011

Painting Small Murals

Be sure to sign up for our newsletter or our RSS Feed to keep posted of our updates to this project for instance I will actually be adding a bamboo trellis,  more sky, and even a Trompe loeil teakwood table for the pineapples to rest on.

I have many repeat seasonal clients as well as new ones who will schedule their projects for the summer months here in Southwest Florida. It really is a win-win situation being that I can schedule each segment of a project according to my studio schedule and stay in constant contact with them via email, phone, or even video.

Up to Date May 30th, 2011

I am back to update this painting small mural post and to add a few more pictures of the progress of this project. Even though I haven’t had the time to update the post the last few weeks I did see an opportunity this weekend being Memorial Day weekend as has given me the chance to spend some time with the family and to do a little catching up on my posts.

As we all know that painting small murals can evolve into bigger murals when thinking creatively and outside the box for problematic areas that really need that additional creative “punch” to bring it to life.

This home, in particular, has that kind of painting small mural feel as you walk through the home towards the rear lanai which is where most of the entertaining is done. I wanted that same feeling for the hallway where the powder room is located and to create that same kind of flow and “wow factor”.  I believe we are going in the right direction with it as you will see with the updated photos

Trompe loeil Art-Faux Designs Naples Fl
Trompe Loeil Stone around mural

Adding the trompe loeil stone around the small mural actually brings more depth to the small mural which is now starting to turn into a larger mural, and as we bring in the color of the marble floor and the wood grain of the teak wood table things really start to happen at the end of this hallway.

Faux wood grain, Trompe loeil table, murals by Arthur Morehead
Faux teak wood table and marble floor

With everything falling into place it’s also time to start bringing in more light and shadow towards the top of the mural and to bring in more plants and maybe a few flowers

murals by Arthur Morehead Naples Fl 239 417 1888

Time to bring in more light and shadows

As I am adding these photos quite quickly I hope I am putting Painting Small Murals in the correct order and not getting to far ahead of myself. Between writing the captions and file names on all the picture downloads at the same time I am also writing the progress here in the post so if it looks a little out of place with my captions don’t worry about it because most people know me to be a “little out of place” anyway.

Go ahead laugh it’s suppose to be funny.

murals, trompe loeil by Naples artist Arthur Morehead
More Shadow and Light

And finally, the last picture I am adding for this update Painting Small Murals will leave us at getting ready to complete the sky mural on the barrel ceiling. I still have more light I have to bring in on the pineapples and table after I complete the sky on the ceiling. Even though it looks great now wait till I get done with the ceiling!


Trompe loeil and murals by Naples artist Arthur Morehead
The latest detail

Be sure to stay informed and sign up for the newsletter or the RSS Feed. There is lots more coming,…. not only on this post but many others that are on a continuing basis for my repeat clients. I am also scheduling seminars and live demonstrations to be held at the Bonita Springs Studio so Sign Up and Tune In

Murals and more Art-Faux Designs Inc Naples/Bonita Springs Fl
4ft x 3 ft niche mural with trompe loeil elements Total 8ft x 4ft


8 thoughts on “Painting Small Murals”

    • Hi Julie, Seems your link is not working so you may want to try and enter it again. But thanks for commenting and I am glad you stopped by, hopefully this doesn’t happen again but it does get some to comment back, lol Yeah I know I’m shameless.lol

    • Hi Tracy, Thanks for the comment, depending on the size of the mural and the circumstances they all can not be done this way because of time constraints, job conditions or what ever the case maybe, but when I have the freedom to be able to do it this way it gives me the chance to punch up the hi lights or deepen the shadows by making them warmer or cooler or maybe even add another flower or something to balance things out. Generally by knowing how the mural will be lit I will just finish it in the studio, install it and be done with it, but I am not that kind of artist to “grab a check and go”. It really is personal with me and I like to give my clients more than they expect.

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