When Camille, from "Camille in the Kitchen" - opened her vegetarian/vegan restaurant in Mansfield with late husband Daniel just over 12 months ago they had always planned to have a mural painted on the shop wall. The design was decided almost from the start but it wasn't until Camille's friend saw an ABC story about Hessco that the wheels started turning.
Hessco was featured on the ABC for his Street Mural Artwork in Yarram, (ABC Story - Hessco - Yarram Murals ) which prompted Camille's friend to email him. Within a week of speaking to Camille the brief had been set and Hessco was on his way to Mansfield.
With an inspiration sheet, Camille's vision, facemask, ladder, a trolley full of spray paints and a few rollers Heesco begins the undercoat. As the layers build so does the level of detail in the design. It's incredible to watch the skill of Heesco as the design unfolds. The colours and flowers compliment the decor inside the restaurant and by the end of Day One you get a really good sense of what the final artwork will look like.
Day two and Heesco adds 'Daniel's Flowers' (flowers photographed by Daniel and chosen by Camille to be included within the mural) along with some orange flowers at the bottom of the mural. A bit of refinement after consulting with Camille and Heesco added the final touch - his signature at the top left of the mural.
I ask Camille, "What do you think?" and she simply says, "I love it!"
I take the opportunity to find out a little bit more about Heesco and it is clear that he finds joy in being able to produce meaningful work.
"I can pick and choose and I'd rather do something a bit more meaningful...that is about the community, it's public art..I look at it almost as if it's a public service, particularly in rural areas." Heesco also thinks about his art from a "kids perspective...if they see more art it enhances their perception of space - it's inspiring for them." Heesco has been a guest lecturer and run workshops at schools along with some individual mentoring. In a field (street art) dominated by males, Heesco loves to provide opportunities for females.
When Heesco leaves Mansfield he is travelling to Finley, NSW, to "paint a few walls with a friend" before "a couple of Melbourne projects, then back to Yarram." He describes Yarram as "probably one of [his] biggest projects." Heesco is fairly flexible with work as "some jobs come up and they want it tomorrow. Some can take up to a year to plan (some of the silos). It's all about the time of the year and if it's a community project they need time to raise funds and get council approvals etc."
Heesco describes a delicate balance between having "direction from a client," and some "creative freedom," but "every commissioned work is always a sketch or collage of things...it's all about communication. I can't guess what's in your head."
I suspect that Heesco's ability to create such beautiful wall art stems from not only his talent but also his warm and friendly personality, ability to communicate and desire to create a finished product that resonates with his client and the community.
It was an absolute pleasure to meet Heesco and see him quietly go about his work to create this beautiful wall mural.
If you are in Mansfield take a stroll down Eisner Lane, enjoy the mural and grab a bite to eat at Camille in the Kitchen .
To see more of Heesco's work or to contact him for a commissioned mural click the website link Heesco Website