Harnessing the skills of professional artists to the creativity and engagement of youth in Darby Park through County funding, and matching City services, a new mural titled Parks Make Life Better was completed in July, 2014.
It was a collaborative effort to teach community youth about the process of creating art. Professional artist Wayne Healy, founder of East Los Streetscapers, worked with professional artist and Team Manager Michelle Glass and five youths from the Darby Park Art Action Team to complete this 11’ tall and 40’ long mural.
Healy, the co-founder of Los Angeles’ legendary East Los Streetscapers, developed an eight-week course curriculum to train the youths in art: figure drawing, mural design and color mixing.
To achieve the participation goals of the project, including working with Inglewood youth in a summer program, the City asked Ms. Glass to develop a one day arts workshop for 20 additional youth. Her proposal, The Flower Chain, was a creative arts signage project using prepared aluminum panels spelling out the Motto of the Department, ‘Parks Make Life Better.’ The letters were individually painted by the youth, who learned about color blending, painting and stenciling techniques.
The Workshop occurred on July 19, 2014. Ms. Glass became the Lead Artist and hired Darby Art Action alumna Omar Baldwin as the Artist Assistant. David Botero developed three design options based on the students' work; one was selected and painted during July, 2014.