Helen Rodriguez, left, and Elspeth Jones are painting the mural above the Hemp Embassy for the Mardi Grass in May.
Helen Rodriguez, left, and Elspeth Jones are painting the mural above the Hemp Embassy for the Mardi Grass in May.

Stroke of genius by mural artists

By RENEE REDMOND

DANCING to the rhythm of their sploshing paintbrushes, mural makers Elspeth Jones and Helen Rodriguez create art that 'says something'.

Their latest project is the Nimbin Hemp Embassy mural, where they have spent countless hours on the rooftop painting a new sign promoting the annual Nimbin MardiGrass festival in May.

Helen said the MardiGrass mural was inspired by India and included bright colours to attract attention to it.

"It's creating a good atmosphere in the town," she said.

"Last year the wind blew the sign down and it was restored with a blank canvas. I think this sign will stay up for a few years, but we're sure to add to it each year."

The artists said they started work about 7.30am each day and finished by midday, before the sun became too intense.

The two Nimbin women volunteered their time to the Hemp Embassy to do 'their part' for the festival preparations.

"Painting a mural is like doing a dance which starts from your wrist and gets you to move your whole body across the canvas using long brush strokes," Elspeth said.

"We're working in the main street, but it still feels isolated up here, so we can stay focused."

Helen said there was endless work in Nimbin for artists.

"We can paint on any wall, anywhere," she said.



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