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Mural Painting Packing List


With a week full of murals, it was a bit of mayhem organising all the tools and materials needed. I have a large, lockable box trailer that I throw all my supplies into (no more spilt paint in my car!). It is great having everything in one area, but I still need to go through my supplies and make sure I have enough for the job and make sure to order the paint and consumables.


Basically all the things to get the paint onto the wall. Check your design as to whether you will need small, medium or large brushes. I have a large box full of every size brush you can imagine. I often buy a couple of new brushes for interior projects too. I always keep a stash of new roller covers in the trailer. It's so easy to design a mural and forget how big the space is and how slow it is to get paint onto a wall with a brush. So I just throw a roller cover on a roller and slap the paint up on the wall. Sponges are good to have around. If I run out of spray paint, I can sponge acrylic paint onto stencils. Sponges are also good for textural walls or to add a finishing layer. And my favourite - spray guns. I have an industrial sized one that attacks massive walls with all the paint. I also have a hand-held Grayco that holds 1L of paint and will get paint on quickly. I'm terrible at cleaning the guns though.


Dump Bucket & Water

Speaking of cleaning - a dump bucket is where all your dirty, painty bits and pieces go to prevent wet paint and pots of dirty water being kicked around the job site. If I have a dirty rag, a brush sitting in a pot of water, any rubbish - I throw it all in the dump bucket, seal up the lid and deal with it when I get back to the studio.


Printed Mural Plans

A lot of artists have their mural design on their phone or iPad but I get paranoid I will run out of battery and then I won't have my design to look at. I also use my phone to timelapse most projects too. So I print out my design to refer to. It also helps when I have school students helping me paint. They like to see what the final design will look like. Also, a random passerby might ask about the final design. And bam! There you have it printed for them to look at.


Paint / Spray Paint / Caps

Don't forget the paint. I often forget the paint. Or order too little. Or think I have black paint in my trailer when I don't. I print a little palette and tick off the colours when I put them in my trailer. Also remember to pop your spray paint and caps in too. I have a little draw in the trailer that is overrun with caps.


It's easier to mark up a design on the wall with chalk because you can rub it off. Don't throw paint straight on the wall. That's crazy talk! Or, if it looks like it could rain, throw the design up with posca pens so the design doesn't disappear off the wall before you get a chance to paint it.


Dropsheets & Rags

Oh there will be spilt paint. Let's just make sure you spill that paint on your drop sheets (and manage to not walk it through your job site). I have a pile of drop sheets for indoor jobs and a pile for outdoor jobs. The outdoor drop sheets have sand, leaves and twigs stuck to them. I can't take them into a beautiful office and throw the dirt and leaves everywhere. I have a bag of rags. I normally have one within arms reach. I'm also known to use my pants as a rag (while I'm still wearing them) if I can't reach my rags. There will be paint everywhere - try to keep as clean as possible.


Sunscreen / Wide Brim Hat / Umbrella / Gazebo / Sunnies / Long sleeve shirt

If you are working on an exterior wall, make sure you are sun safe. Not only will it keep your skin safe, but the shade from a umbrella or gazebo really reduces the temperature. Get the sun screen onto you. Even if you are wearing a large hat and long sleeve shirt, please put sunscreen on. The UV rays will bounce off the wall and hit you in the face. Make sure to re-apply particularly on the tops of your hands as these are the most sun exposed when you are painting.


No one likes to work in silence. That's crazy! I always bring both the speakers and a pair of headphones. Normally the headphones are a bit too hot to wear, but if people keep trying to talk to me, I'll pop the headphones on. I promise I'm friendly, but I'm also on tight deadlines. If I am also working by myself later into the afternoon, I don't wear my headphones for personal safety reasons.


Random Tools

So many weird tools you may only use once on site, but they prove to be very helpful. A rubber hammer to bash the paint tins closed so they don't tip and spill on the way home. A quick tip: Put a rag over the lid before you hit it with a hammer. If there is wet paint on the lid and you bash it with a hammer it may fly off in all directions.

Paint tin openers. Yes. Multiple. I lose them all. Then find all 15 of them two weeks after the mural project is complete. Painters tape. Because you will often need to tape off lights, handles or other items you are not meant to paint. Stencils. You may have stencils to spray on logos or your signature. Projector and Extension Lead. If you are projecting your design, this is pretty important. Ladder. Just in case you can't reach.


All this information (and more) is available in one of the many digital downloads from The Business of Murals online workshop. It is a printable, comprehensive mural packing checklist that you can print and check off as you pack your car for your next job. So if you're looking for more support for your Mural Business, head on over to the online workshop.


NB.This post may contain affiliate links. If you purchase through these links, I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you. However, I only recommend products or services that I genuinely like and trust.

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