The Making of a Mural (part 3) / by Walter Kitundu

Click for Part OneClick for Part Two All the background pieces were ready and all the birds had been cut out. Now it was time to place all the birds and start the inlay process. I had to remove each background piece and cut it to accomodate the bird cutouts.

The sparrow finished and inlaid into the background.

Working late nights in a cold studio wasn't the healthiest way to go about it but the work needed to be done.

The birds had to have a protective clearcoat before getting permanently installed and they clustered together in a corner to dry.

Finally the terrifying notion of spraying all my hard work with an unknown varnish and unknown spray gun came to pass. Luckily three coats went on clean and the finish turned out great.

Moving day. Shipping the mural sections to the airport.

Installation was handled by some professional art installers who did the work but let me guide each step of the process. It fit together better than I had hoped. The hours spent leveling the structure in the studio and devising an attachment system paid off.

The Burrowing Owl was the secret to getting the mural installed. It was the cover of a secret hatch that allowed someone to go inside to secure the last section of the mural to the wall.

Exiting through the owl.

I hope this look into the process has been interesting. The grand opening was April 14th and the terminal is in full swing. If you are ever flying to San Francisco and want to see the mural, book your flight on Virgin America or American Airlines since they are the only airlines in Terminal 2.

The mural is dedicated to my late father and today is his birthday. It is a tough day but I'm trying to focus on all the good memories. Thanks for tuning in to Bird Light Wind. Having the chance to share my images and experiences with you is one of my favorite things.