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Mural 58, CrossRoads Baptist Church, Columbus, Ohio

Okay, if you learned anything from my last muraling experience in Mexico, you know that it is possible to "wheel and deal" in parts of the world for services like murals and dental work. It's something that I really enjoy about other cultures. I've never seen it happen back home. And, that's because it never happens. I knew it was impossible to "wheel and deal" in the United States. Of course, it isn't the first time that I've been wrong.

My pastor suggested that I meet a chiropractor and his wife who needed an artist to create a logo and a brochure. He thought I might be just who they needed. The name of their business had "back pain" in the title. When I called the wife, I said, "I wish you also worked on feet." Considering my recent problems with a host of issues walking, I thought it could have been a good connection.

Well, well, well, the instant reply was, "We do!"

A guiding philosophy in my life is to always say yes to any opportunities that come my way. Closely following is my belief that it never hurts to ask. So, I asked about exchanging art services for chiropractic care. And, much to my delight, the answer was yes.

The first plan for an exchange was for the logo and brochure that I already mentioned. But, that was set aside when they saw how I could illustrate children's books. For some reason that was set aside and plans were made for art tutoring. That, too, was set aside for a mural. But, when the pastor and his wife at the CrossRoads Baptist Church saw my murals, they didn't want to set any plans aside. They had a newly refinished children's Sunday School room just ready for my kind of decorating.

Our exchange was made!

Now, just what do you use to decorate a Sunday School classroom? Of course, you used Bible stories. From right to left, my design included Creation, the Snake in the Garden of Eden, Moses and the Ten Commandments, Joshua marching around Jericho, Jonah and the Whale, David and Goliath, the Birth of Jesus, the Crucifixion and the Resurrection. If by chance you don't know any of these stories, perhaps you need to go to Sunday School.

There's no science in painting a mural. I can make an estimate on how things will work out, how much time it takes to complete a mural and the amount of paint needed. But, things don't always go as planned. It's always educated guesswork.

I invite any and all people who want to paint. And, usually that includes a lot of children. They absolutely love to participate. I love the fact that they love it. But, truth be told, children usually do as much damage as they do good. With kids painting, it usually takes two days to apply the color and another two days of touching up with only adults holding brushes. And, as a general rule, with kids participating, I almost never apply paint myself during the first two days of a mural. I'm too busy supervising, mixing paints, solving problems and keeping things under some kind of control.

At CrossRoads, I had one teenager and a group of adults painting. By the end of the first painting session, more than half of the wall was painted. On the second day, I let the adults mix their own paint, choose their own colors and solve their own problems. Of course, I'd answer any questions they wanted me to help them with, but they were mostly on their own. I spent a large chunk of the day outlining.

That is simply unheard of on Day Two! Of course, I have to admit, I was painting a mural about stories with lots of miracles. I guess I have another one to share now.

Copyright 2019 by Phillip Martin All rights reserved.