Over the years I have seen what looking at grey walls versus looking at colourful walls has on the psychology of people. It’s impossible to ignore the endless comments from people when I am painting the streets they regularly frequent.
From inspired people voluntarily handing us handfuls of money because they are so touched by the colours and the ‘refreshingly non-agenda/non-political’ message we are sharing as we paint electricity boxes featuring peaceful faces and purple flowers in inner city Belfast, to every mumbled comment from a passer-by when you do a mural in Dublin.
“It’s beautiful.” “Gorgeous.” “Fair play to you.”
I’ve had a really old lady hug me and thank me for a mural that in her words “…it made this street less frightening to walk down at night. Before it was just abandoned buildings, now it’s all art”, She did this in front of 4 policemen who had just been hassling me for using spray cans and after the old lady walked away, so did the police, smiling happily. I had the same policeman come to me months later and thank us for making the area beautiful. Art changes things, colour changes things, public art can inspire a good mood or give you that first smile that sets your day rolling in the right direction.
I’m part of the Minaw Collective, a bunch of female painters in Ireland. We have been together since 2013 and we go on little painting adventures together! It’s great having art friends to talk with about all things paint related, and then to have the company while out painting, having added fun and support. We will be appearing in a few documentaries that will be released soon; I’ll keep you posted on the details. We also featured in an international street art book called “All City Queens”.