Magical Murals for Bath Bookshop
Sometimes it feels like being an artist & illustrator is the best job in the world! Especially when I’m asked to create an entirely new magical mural world! This is exactly what happened at the wonderful Mr B’s Bookshop, Emporium of Reading Delights in Bath, UK.
Mr B’s is an independent bookshop in Bath. In 2015 the Guardian named Mr B’s one of the ten best bookshops in the world.
It all started a year ago when I was commissioned by the owners, Nick and Juliette to create a ‘reading tree’ in their existing children’s section. The design brief was to create a mobile centrepiece unit that could display books, have a little seating area and most of all to entice and inspire children to sit and read!
After coming up with an initial concept the tree was constructed from wood, then painted purple and given gnarly bark illustrated with thick black lines to give it a 3D street art mural feel. It was then covered it in multi coloured leaves and adorned with a plethora of illustrated characters, some of which represented favourite children stories. Oh yes, and mustn’t forget Mr bookworm who was hidden behind a secret door in the tree trunk for the children to find! Excitingly the tree proved to be immensely popular and a major focal point in the shop.
Fast forward to a year later and Mr B’s is expanding, almost doubling in size into the adjoining building.
So… Nick and Juliette came back to me to help them redesign a completely new separate children’s’ area. They wanted us to create a new woodland world incorporating the original tree. Relishing the task ahead the concept was proposed to include another illustrated reading tree with branches growing through the bookshelves, an interactive woodland mural featuring moveable eyes and a squashed beetle under some fungus as well as many more characters welcoming children and parents alike into this new magical space.
This was a fantastical, fun-packed project which allowed my imagination to be set free! When you’re next in Bath, pop into this magical space and spot the varied inhabitants including capybara, sloths, foxes, various insects and worms.
In addition to the new children’s area I was asked to paint a mural in the ‘Imaginarium’. A space designated for Author signings and for budding writers to hire out as an inspirational creative space. I designed and painted a mural that spans across the back wall to mirror the beautiful existing William Morris pattern chair whilst incorporating text, motifs and horses within the floral design.