El Cajon Blvd – Mural

Mural commissioned by the El Cajon Boulevard Improvement District to beautify an under-construction stretch of El Cajon Blvd.

BRIEF
Conceptualize and design a 287’ x 5’ site-specific mural to beautify the 4300 block of El Cajon Boulevard in San Diego, California. El Cajon Boulevard is a part of the historic Route 80 and has become a hub for many modes of transportation. The mural should reflect the growth, commerce, diversity, and identity of the surrounding area as well as encourage residents and tourists to live, work, play, and dine on the Boulevard.


SOLUTION
The mural created explores various aspects of life on El Cajon Boulevard. It includes images relating to business, daily living, and El Cajon Boulevard’s history: transportation. The style chosen mimics that of a pastel drawing. The gradients and blending of colors represent the diversity and cohesiveness of people in the area. A variety of colors were used so the piece would catch the viewer’s eye and so everyone would see themselves represented. This piece is effective because it is both appealing to a passerby, yet can engage a viewer who wishes to find all of the images hidden within the work for a longer period of time.
After creating a list of relevant images, simple contour sketches were created.
The sketches were arranged under tracing paper to find the most interesting intersections of line and juxtaposition of content. Seen below is a portion of the resulting line work.
Once a basic layout was established, it was refined in Adobe Illustrator. Lines were simplified in a way that resulted in objects becoming intertwined.
Gradients was added to the shapes that resulted between flowing lines.
Color was incorporated. As with the overlapping line work, the colors of the various objects intermingle.

The flowing lines, and gradating colors, inspired by stained glass and pastel drawins, serve to remind the viewer that although the area is composed of varying ages, cultures, and professions, all are connected within the Boulevard.
Note: The edges of the banner flow seamlessly together for tiling purposes.
A series of postcards were created based on the design of the mural in order to raise funds to produce the art as well as maintain the community. 50% of the proceeds would go toward the efforts.
Installation.
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