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  • Writer's pictureZee


Hi again! I thought it would be fun to share a little background story of one of my past projects, to give you something to read on a lazy Sunday. A few months ago, Pipes Hostel in Kuta Lombok commissioned me to do a 20 square meter mural as a new background for their skate bowl. The laid-back hostel is tucked away in a lush tropical garden and features cosy & clean dorm rooms, a brand new swimming pool, movie projector and epic hangout areas and of course, the skate bowl. The place had a couple of great artworks on their walls already, so I was beyond stoked to be asked to do my first large piece here, let alone to get my favourite briefing for the project: "just use a deep turquoise and white outlines... then just do what you want." LET'S GOOOO! Before I explain the story, there's a list which kind of sums it all up (fellow artists can probably relate to the following process); 1. This is awesome! 2. This is tricky... 3. This is shit. 4. I am shit. 5. This might be okay... 6. This is awesome! STAGE ONE - THIS IS AWESOME! It started off with cleaning the wall and selecting the paint. Then came the priming stage; covering a graffiti artwork done by another artist. Easy peasy, just slap on a white primer and done! Right? When the primer had dried, I put down the first turquoise layer and the fun began. I had to impatiently wait until the following day for it to dry, before I could add the second layer and cover the remains of the graffiti. I taped the circle after the second layer and started to outline some of the flowers in pencil. STAGE 2 - THIS IS TRICKY... The next day I started sweating a bit, and for a change it wasn't because of the humid weather... I pulled off the tape around the circle and saw the turquoise paint AND the primer come off to the point where I had a perfect circle made up of the graffiti art underneath. What. The. Fuck. "What should I do, just cover it up and act like this is normal? But what if this happens again? What if I paint over it, get paid and in two weeks my entire painting has peeled off? Did I use the wrong primer?" STAGE 3 - THIS IS SHIT So, the hostel staff, my partner and I spent the next 3 days manually peeling, scraping and sanding off 20 square metres of rubber-like paint. It was insanely demotivating, but seeing these guys help me and the fact I REALLY wanted to deliver my idea, made me flick the switch to braindead work mode - and just got it done. STAGE 4 - I AM SHIT Yes. Yes, I did use the wrong primer. Did I blame this on the girl in the paint store who had advised me the wrong product. Yes I did. For a few hours. But then I just got angry at myself for not having done enough research. The primer is like the foundation of a mural, how could I be so dumb and just take a single person's advice?! STAGE 5 - THIS MIGHT BE OKAY... So, armed with headphones and Stick To Your Guns' new album, a load of new paint and rollers, I started over. And actually, I chose a slightly different colour which everyone including myself preferred over the initial one! Could this actually turn out better than I expected...? STAGE 6 - THIS IS AWESOME! The turquoise turned out so deep and intense, I absolutely loved it! Then came the BEST part, outlining and details in white and of course sealing it with a clear coat. to protect it in the monsoon season. The local staff even held the ladder for me because I was crapping my pants about painting at four meters height. LESSON LEARNT - DO YOUR FREAKIN' RESEARCH! Thanks to everybody at Pipes Hostel for your support, patience and for this awesome opportunity! For more info and bookings, head to

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