Bus Shelter Mural Program - Design Ideas
Mural created by Evergreen School students
Located at Meridian Ave. N & N 135th St. in Seattle
Your bus shelter mural will be a visible part of the community for years. Our goal is to foster a level of quality which will be admired by the community, regardless of the age group that created the artwork.
In general, we ask that participants submit a design with their application form. Occasionally we make exceptions, like when an artist will be working with students for an allotted amount of time and is planning on having the students help develop the theme and design.
Your bus shelter mural design should be in the same shape (horizontal, vertical, etc.) as the panels in your first choice bus shelter. Label your designs so that we understand the intended arrangement of your mural panels. Most murals are painted on the lower panels of the bus shelter. If the bus shelter is against a blank wall or wood panels already exist in the upper back section of the bus shelter, your design should include the upper panels, too. A "checkerboard" pattern of 1/2 glass and 1/2 wood can be proposed for the design of the upper back section of the shelter to allow for both visibility and painted areas.
A unified theme that covers all the wood panels in the bus shelter works best. All of the panels, once installed in the bus shelter, create a single artwork that is the sum of all the panels. If each panel is an individual stand-alone style of artwork, add a border or some element that ties the panels together as one artwork. Design your mural for all viewable sides. Bus shelter murals have used northwest, environmental, historical and cultural themes. The better your mural relates to the site, the better it will be received in that community. Abstract, surreal and stylistic artists have also created many interesting and successful projects. Color and composition are perhaps the two most important factors we have found for creating attractive projects, regardless of the age group or style of art. Artists who paint with aerosol (spray) paint have also created a number of striking murals.
In creating your design, keep in mind that your mural's most frequent viewers are people traveling in vehicles. Large designs with bright colors work best on the panels facing the street, for viewers in vehicles. Remember to step back and view your design from a distance, some elements of your design should be recognizable from a distance of about 60 feet. Smaller, intricate and subtle designs should be kept to panels that face away from the street, to create interest for people walking by or waiting for the bus.
When you look at your bus shelter, note any obstacles that could block areas of your mural and plan your design accordingly. Advertising or offensive images cannot be included in the design. Metro reserves the right not to display the artwork if the quality is less than what Metro feels is appropriate for a public bus shelter site.