Painting Life onto the Brewery’s Wall

Jim Young stood before the vast, blank expanse of the Right Brain Brewery wall, located in the heart of Traverse City, Michigan. With the mural’s design clear in his mind, he realized that this vision would require more than just his hands. That’s when Ashley Sorvisto and I stepped in, eager to tackle the challenge. Russell Springsteen, the owner of Right Brain, had long dreamt of a mural enhancing that wall, and with our combined talents, that dream was on the verge of becoming a reality.

Right Brain Brewery Mural
Right Brain Brewery Mural

Jim’s initial concept aimed to encapsulate the unique spirit of Right Brain. However, faced with city regulations, he showcased his flexibility. Refocusing his design on the fundamental ingredients of beer, Jim’s rendition highlighted water, grain, and hops, aiming to represent these elements in their purest, most captivating form.

Once the design was finalized, Ashley and I joined the project. Our collective goal was to preserve the integrity of Jim’s unique style. Every brushstroke we made was in homage to his original vision, and the synergy of our collaboration radiated from the finished work.

Choosing latex paint, Jim intentionally forwent the ease of spray cans. This decision was a reflection of the artisanal ethos of Right Brain Brewery. As vibrant hues began to materialize on the wall, it didn’t take long for intrigued onlookers to stop and admire, their appreciative glances and words of praise becoming a familiar and heartening refrain.

For Jim, this endeavor marked a departure from his customary solitary undertakings. Teaming up with Ashley and me, however, opened up new vistas of creativity, showcasing the wonders of collaborative artistry.

For Ashley, this project was a rejuvenating experience. Beyond the brilliant colors she contributed, the endeavor reinvigorated her passion for art. She mused about the invaluable discussions we had, be it selecting the ideal colors or fine-tuning the mural’s proportions.

Personally, I had never embarked on such a direct wall painting project before. The experience was enlightening and will forever be etched in my memory.

As the day waned and dusk bathed our mural in a soft, golden light, we paused to admire our collective creation. The Right Brain Brewery wall was no longer just brick and mortar; it was a canvas telling a tale of beer, innovation, and the splendor of teamwork—a narrative we were immensely proud of.