Project started as a way to overcome an emotional rough patch during the COVID-19 pandemic
What started as a little activity to draw chalk rainbows on the pavement has transformed a Port Moody neighbourhood into a gallery of giant colourful murals that is bringing people together and lifting spirits during the COVID-19 lockdown.
Ladawne Shelstad said she was going through a rough emotional patch early in the pandemic when her six-year-old daughter, Maddyn, suggested they create rainbows on the road in front of their Klahanie townhouse.
“They’re a symbol of hope,” Maddyn said.
Working together, Shelstad found the mother and daughter project soothed her anxiety. It also fired her creativity. So they extended their effort to their garage door, decorating it with a giant heart.
When Shelstad discovered one of her neighbours was a nurse, she doodled on paper a design for a mural of thanks she could chalk on her garage door.
A project manager in the communications industry who’d taken some art courses “years ago,” Shelstad found inspiration in stained glass windows. Using tape and a little elbow grease to get the wooden doors clean of dust and grime so the chalk could adhere, she and Maddyn did one mural, and then another as neighbours enquired whether their garages could be included in the project as well. A donation of chalk helped push them along.
Ladawne Shelstad poses with one of her first “interactive” chalk murals she’s…