How to Paint a Giant Mural in Downtown Houston

What does it take to get a giant mural onto the side of a building? Houston Life's Melanie Camp went Downtown to find out more from International Artist Case Maclaim.

HOUSTON – What does it take to get a giant mural onto the side of a building? We went Downtown to find out more from international Artist, Case Maclaim. Maclaim is one of nine artist who are painting a series of giant murals on buildings, turning downtown Houston into one huge open air art gallery.

“I see it like a blank paper, and I start sketching, and every day becomes more detailed,” said Maclaim of the stories high piece he is painting from the basket of a cherry picker.

Houston Downtown Management District welcomed international non-profit, Street Art for Mankind to Houston to curate the series of murals. The organization, founded in 2016 by Audrey and Thibault Decker, works with prominent street artists from around the world to raise awareness around a number of social and environmental issues.

“One of our roles as the Downtown Management District is to bring vibrancy to the urban landscape. And this is a great example of us doing just that,” said Houston Downton Management District Marketing and Communications Director, Shelby Pipken.

The series of murals are inspired by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals which include; Zero Hunger, No Poverty, and Reduced Inequality. “We really want people to stop, look at these big murals, and see how they can make make the difference,” Audrey Decker said live on Houston Life.

This weekend you an join the mural unveiling celebration. Downtown Houston will host an art festival with a number of activations. The festival kicks off at 11 am and goes on until 4 pm.

Here is a list of places you can celebrate:

  • Food Truck Alley located at the intersection of Main St. and Lamar: Choose from a variety of food trucks, enjoy live performances, dance battles, and raffles/giveaways
  • All Access Art Market located at Main Street Square: Over 80 local artists will take over Main Street Square to showcase the talented and creative Houstonians. Other activities include a free caricature artist, live chalk artist, on-site t-shirt printing and fun photo opportunities
  • KidZone located at the intersection of Walker and Main: Kids can take part in dance classes, a variety of crafts, and pictures with their favorite movie characters
  • Finn Hall Beer Garden located at 712 Main Street: For one day only, Finn Hall will bring their bar outdoors to create a beer garden experience. Enjoy a cold brew, live music and art cars on their new and improved patio space
  • Photo opportunities along Main St. from Rusk to Prairie: Grab photos with low riders, art cars, and other fun photo opps
  • Live Music and Dance Performances: Enjoy musical performances from TSU Drumline, HSPVA, and UHD Mariachi and Rice University band

Find out more about all the murals and the work Street Art for Mankind do around the world online here.

Watch the video above to see what the mural creation process looks like.


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