SAMARA: Earl's Tin Palace Mural

I worked with the Earl's Restaurants interior design team to design and paint the centrepiece mural in their Tin Palace location, a commercial restaurant space. Scroll down for the case study! 

*There's also some video behind the scenes on my instagram stories.

*Sign up to the newsletter for more stories like this about my studio work!

Client: Earl's Restaurants
Location: Earl's Tin Palace • Edmonton, Canada

Above: The digital version of the finalized mural design.
Below: some of ~50 options as I went through the design process to arrive at the above.


Q: How did you create the final design?
A: The client really liked some of my Mezzaluna greeting card designs, so that was a great starting point!

To start the design process I adjusted the composition and colours in those card designs, redesigning the motifs to fit a long, wide wall. I was happy to have an in-situ rendering to work from, so the whole team could visualize the mural in the space.

The same designs can change a lot with just a shift in colour. I made ~50 of these combinations, and showed the client only the strongest ones. It's part of a designer's job to edit down options to what will suit the project best. It's choice overload at times, but also so satisfying to get the right design in the end.

The Earl's team and I narrowed the final design options down together to the shapes and colours that worked for their space. I kept a special eye on making sure the design could be hand painted with accuracy and in the time I had to paint. When the process was done, it was time to get the mural painting gear together and go on site.

Above: tracing the mural design onto the wall using a projector

Q: How long did it take to paint the mural?
A: 6 days in a row, 8 hours a day = 48 hours! You only have as long as the construction process can remain reasonably dust-free and you need to work around others who need access to the wall or area you're working in. This means you've got to balance working as fast as possible with also creating a really good result (the story of designers everywhere!). 

Above: roughing in and hand-drawing shapes from the digital design to fill in. I am forever thankful for the drawing classes I took in design school when I work on mural projects!

Painters tape was my best friend in this mural. Detail after detail getting painted in, sometimes needing to leave it all overnight to dry before tape could be peeled. Careful planning and scheduling was key.

Above: planning curves by eye

Above: Peeling the final grid lines was so satisfying.

Above: A small fraction of the giant tape ball I made over several days.

Obligatory view from the mural painting platform! 

IT'S DONE! HAPPY HOUR ANYONE? It's always a thrill to make custom designs for specific projects. If you've got a custom design project in mind, do get in touch and let's see what we can get done together!

← Older Post

Commissions + Special Projects


MIDNIGHT DISPATCH: Cast concrete design

Midnight Dispatch Public Art Piece Custom surface design for cast concrete Lewis Farms Fire Hall • Edmonton, CanadaSurface Design at 2m x 3m *Sign up to the newsletter for...

Read more

DOT DOT DASH: Prototype hook system

DOT DOT DASH: Prototype Hook System / Wall Installation Acetate wall installation exhibited at IDS Toronto • January 2019 Metal hook prototype exhibited at the...

Read more