Pupils lend artist a hand and brighten Feilding street with mural art
Feilding pupils are getting their hands dirty in an effort to brighten up their town.
Lytton Street School pupils helped create a "bright, vibrant piece of art" in the form of a mural across a school wall this month.
Artist Joe McMenamin volunteered his time to create the mural in an attempt to give children the opportunity to learn about art, painting and mural work.
McMenamin's murals are splashed about Lower Hutt, after its city council commissioned him to fix some areas which had been tagged.
McMenamin and his family made the move to Feilding this year, and he was on a mission to brighten up some town streets.
A high school art teacher for 14 years, this year was his first as a full-time artist.
The mural at Lytton Street School, which faces on to Monmoth St, came about after he decided to do an art project in each of his children's classrooms.
"It kind of started off as a class project and then it expanded to include more students from the school."
Pupils took part in a workshop on design and learnt how to paint a mural before giving it a crack themselves.
It took about a week to paint, including working in some tricky wind.
But McMenamin said it was a fun venture that gave the children a chance to experience what it was like to be an artist.
It was also a way to create some positive visual advertising.
"I just think they think it's a bright, vibrant piece of art. It's something more interesting than a plain wall."
McMenamin's speciality is native New Zealand birds and he often incorporated bird-song patterns into his work.
He does painting, prints and murals. He has painted about 10 murals so far this year.
"I make original paintings on wood of birds. That's kind of been my thing – I just love birds and I love painting them and feathers."
"I don't paint people. I can't paint faces or people. But birds and nature are my thing."
His next project will be painting a timeline at the Colyton Community Hall.