mural mural on the wall
By Michele RobertsonA drive around our fair city will provide keen observers with a variety of murals, all depicting different aspects of life in our area. The newest of these murals is the Greetings from Carlsbad Muralproject; brought to the community by the Pearl of the Pecos Arts & Cultural District.Kathleen Davis, Director for the Pearl of the Pecos Arts & Cultural District led the coordination of the project, and artist Michael Fish with Artbyfish worked with Davis to create the vision.“I knew when I started in my role as the ACD Director that one of the first projects I wanted to get going on was a mural project. I felt they would be a great way to define our district while also showcasing local talent, artists, landmarks, tourist attractions etc. The inspiration behind this specific mural came from an old historic postcard Carlsbad had that I came across at the library one day. I loved the idea behind that postcard image and have also seen the popularity of "Greetings from" and "Welcome to" murals in different cities so I knew I wanted to replicate that in our community. We took aspects of that old image and mixed it with the modern and came up with our final design,” Davis shared.The project is also a community funded work of art, “I wanted this to be a community project, that's where the GoFundMe came from, even if you could only contribute $10 you could still be a part of the project. Individuals and businesses that contributed $250 will have their names included in side panels. Since it is a mural and artistic project I didn't want to go with a simple plaque or logos to list the donors out, instead they will be creatively worked into a cactus scene on both sides of the mural,” said Davis. Finding an artist who is able to capture an idea and work it into reality can be an interesting process at times. “I came across Fish's work through Ruck-Us sign printing his stickers. I emailed him saying I loved his work and would like to collaborate with him on a project if he did murals. He responded that he would be here in the next week or so to pick up the stickers and when we met up it turns out he had worked with Julie Chester in the past in the hopes of getting some murals done in the district. So I was able to kind of pick up where they left off and see the vision through (although they were 2 completely different mural projects). When we met and talked about ideas and I learned that he was the one who painted the Welcome to Ruidoso mural (he is from Capitan) I knew he was the perfect artist for the job!” shared Davis. The artist, Michael Fish who goes by artbyfish is a New Mexico based artist with roots in Lincoln County. His work is inspired by the tradition, history, and scenery of the area and he expresses it with pops of psychedelic color and stylization that is appeasing and entertaining to the eye. He discovered his passion for art around four years of age, and his favorite mediums to use are acrylic for painting and ball point pen for drawing.
Artbyfish was at the July Carlsbad Downtown Farmers and Makers Market, Third Thursday event working on the painting. “My favorite part is the kids and their genuine enthusiasm and completely honest feedback. I also just enjoy visiting with people who express an opinion or just want to discuss any aspect of what I'm working on,” shared Fish. “Stay tuned, this is only the beginning of murals in the Pearl of the Pecos Arts & Cultural District!” Davis said