How to paint a Mural

If you plan to paint a mural using acrylics, this blog post will answer a few of your questions.

  • What type of paint should I use to paint a mural?
  • What other materials do I need to paint a mural?
  • How do I prepare a wall before painting a mural on it?

When you paint a mural, you’ll have two distinct stages of painting, just as when you paint on canvas: first you’ll create an under painting to block in main areas of colour and outline the general composition, and then you’ll paint in the details.

To paint large blocks of colour use interior household paint. Painting large blocks of colour with latex paint is more economical than trying to cover the entire wall with artist quality acrylics. You will get better coverage from interior household paint and save yourself a ton of money.

Interior household paint comes in different sheens: flat, low sheen, satin and semi-gloss. An eggshell sheen works best for murals. Avoid satin or semi-gloss sheens, because they are too shiny. The flat sheen is also not ideal as it cannot be scrubbed. Low Sheen is just right because it can be cleaned and accepts layers of paint on top of it.

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For the detailed sections on your mural, use tubes and jars of artist-quality acrylics and proceed just as if you were painting on canvas.

Other materials you’ll need to paint a mural

Paintbrushes: You’ll need a variety of paintbrushes, from small to wide. The sizes you’ll need will largely depend on the amount of detail you’ll be painting. For covering large areas with paint, use wide brushes – 1″, 2″ and 3″ wide brushes. You can use a 4″ brush, if you have a lot of space you want to fill in quickly with a single colour. For smaller detailed areas, use an array of round brushes in different sizes.

Primer/Sealer: Just as you would prime a canvas before painting on it, you should prime a wall before painting a mural. The primer will create a smooth, even surface that will readily accept acrylic paint.

Paint Tray and Roller: If you are going to cover wide areas with a single colour, consider pouring your paint into a paint tray and using a roller to apply the paint to the wall. This will save you a lot of time.

Painter’s Tape: You’ll need tape for adhering a protective covering on the floor. The best tape to use is a painters’ tape, because it is easy to remove.

Palette: Once you’re ready to paint in the details, you’ll need a palette upon which to mix your paints.

Newspaper or Plastic /Canvas Drop Cloth: Spread newspaper or a plastic tarpaulin on the floor where you will be painting, and use the painters’ tape to secure it to the base boards.

Apron or old clothes: As you learn how to paint a mural, you’ll discover that painting walls is messy. Be sure to dress appropriately or wear the proper protection.

Cup for water: You’ll need a sturdy cup to hold the water that you’ll dip your brushes into for rinsing and cleaning.

A bottle of clean water: In addition to water for your brushes, a separate bottle of clean water is handy to keep on standby if you accidentally spill paint.

Paper towels and/or old rags: Paper towels and old rags are essential for cleaning up spills.

Stool or stepladder: For reaching the high parts of the wall.

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We’d love to see your pics once done. Do share!

Happy Painting!

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