The Beekman Street Arts District asked Arts Spark to help with the Makers Tent at the 2018 Beekman Street Art Fair. We were thrilled to help and wanted to create a project that would allow everyone to participate — no matter what their age or ability.

The Process

We started by taking a picture of the Saratoga Springs Heritage Area Visitor Center. We then cropped it, brought it down to 17 colors (couldn’t quite get to 16), and created the blocks that individuals could paint.  Unfortunately, in this process, you do lose some of the detail, but it makes it easier for everyone to paint.  The canvas was printed and stretched onto a frame by Adirondack Sign Co., in Saratoga Springs, NY.

Each color was converted to RGB, which helped us pick paint colors.  We then prepped individual paint containers for users.  Over 300 people participated in painting this mural on June 10, 2018. Check out the video below.

Why is it so block-y? The image was broken down into 4608 1” x 1” squares to make painting easier. Computer generated images are made up of pixels, tiny squares of color that, when put together at a high resolution (lots of pixels per square inch), let you see the image and not the individual pixels.  When you zoom in on an image, you can see these individual pixels. In our case, we needed to see the individual pixels.  If you step back 10-15 feet, or look at the image at an angle, it better represents the actual image – just like zooming out on a picture on your computer.

Thank you!

Saratoga Heritage Area Visitor Center, Sherwin Williams Saratoga, Adirondack Sign Co., and the Beekman Street Arts District for their help with this project.