The Rere School Mural (1200x2400) 1999

Painted by this group of thirty five 8 to 12 year old students.

 All things bright and beautiful... Rere School�s colourful mural is the combined work of students who were taught some of the "finer points" of painting.

The article below explains the process of painting a mural in detail and
appeared in the
Gisborne Herald... 
Rere School�s Budding Art Students

by Julia Bolton-Mitford (Rere School)

    In the second half of this year our principal Jason Caldwell organised Rere School senior room to paint a large mural of the hills we run around for our fitness.
    We also decided to decorate our landscape with birds that we had painted in term one. Several junior students also worked on eight smaller mural panels at the same time.
    In term one we had painted birds on canvas for an art auction. We choose birds because we were studying flight as part of science.
    Before painting our canvas, Mr Caldwell taught us how to hold a paint brush properly, shade from black to white, mix tones and tints of a colour, under-painting and dry-brushing techniques.
    We also painted colour wheels, learning to mix the colours we would need. The art auction went well and we earned over $2000 for the school, but. more importantly this project had given us the skills we needed to paint the murals.
Once several students had undercoated the boards Mr Caldwell drew on the outlines for the hills and sky.
Before we could do anything on the mural we all had to practice our brush strokes.
    Everyone found this easy so we began with the sky. About ten of us in a line started off dark blue and got lighter the more we moved down the board towards the hills.
    The hills were the same as the sky except we shaded them darker as we moved down. The hills did not take long as different teams of students painted different hills, this added a natural variance of the scenery.


    The idea is to paint the background first then paint the objects on top, instead of doing it the other way around and having to try and paint all the gaps. The stream and rocks were next.
    For the stream we got some blue and some white on the brush at the same time and let them mix together on the mural as we did all swirling curving strokes. This gave a really neat effect that made it look real like rushing water.
    When all of the background was finished we got the overhead projector and projected our bird sketches that Mr Caldwell had saved from the art auction. We drew around our birds with vivid pen.
    When all the outlines were finished we started to paint. This was the best part of the project as the whole thing came alive. Three or four students painted their birds at a time and everyone was surprised to see that it only took two days to paint the birds on..
    The frog, lizard, butterfly and the lady bugs were hand drawn on by Mr Caldwell and painted by us kids.
    Most of us found that we painted our bird more quickly and easily on the mural than in our first paintings. We needed less advice from Mr. Caldwell and most felt their second bird was even better than their first.
    We presented the junior panels and the large mural at the pets day. Everyone was staring at our work and talking about how good it all looked!