The Courthouse Cafe Mural

I have yet another recent mural experience to share with y’all. The recent Picoso’s Mexican Kitchen mural project caught the attention of an old friend Julie Rooney (now owner of the most adorable shop in Portales, New Mexico: The Happy Place) who recommended me for a mural. The Courthouse Cafe, named for the town’s courthouse that across the street and makes up the “main square”, needed their logo painted on a large scale on the back of the building, making it visible to the road coming into town. I made some adjustments to their logo design: enlarging the word “Cafe” to be more visible and let people know that it is indeed a place of food and drink and not of law. I also made a rectangle around it and fashioned it to look like an old sign. I treated the overall logo to look a bit aged as if the sign had been their a while, to match their business’ nod to the history of Portales and its courthouse.

I learned a lot on this project: most importantly that scaffolding is heavy and one should really order a railing. I rented two scaffolding sets which I built one on top of the other to reach the 10-17 foot high mural space. What I did not anticipate was that standing on a 2-foot wide wooden beam ten feet in the air with no railing gets old really quick. Especially when you’re trying to hold a paint container and brush. I was also informed that scaffolding is often stolen for the aluminum and that I really shouldn’t leave it in an alleyway three nights in a row. Oh. Thankfully I had friends, and the lovely owner Mary with her whole family, to helped me build it and take it down each morning and night. I very much appreciate the practicality of a scissor lift now (though currently a piece of machinery out of my budget).

As ever, I’m grateful to the wonderful people who continue to hire me and spread the word about my little art business. I am so so lucky to do this work.

view of the back of the Courthouse Cafe in Portales, New Mexico
The Courthouse Cafe Mural: an edited version of their logo.
A distant view of the Courthouse Cafe Mural. The high contrast helps legibility from a distance.
Close up of the Courthouse Cafe Mural with overall treatment to age it and make it appear more worn.

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