A Gold Ceiling and Snowballed by Grace

Hello Love,

It’s my favorite week of the year! I love Thanksgiving – the yummy food, fall colors,  hikes, naps, and long week of rest – but mostly how good it feels to individually and collectively tune into gratitude and steep in that together. I feel sheepish to share this, but for the last four months, I have been taking it easy. Resting, rebooting, and taking lots of days off with nothing to show for it. It sounds better in the retelling than my actual experience of it, which included feeling adrift, worrying about work and finances, and lots of “should” -ing on myself (I should be posting on Instagram more often! I should write a newsletter! What is wrong with me!?) My intention to slow down made the creep of high expectations that hounded me more obvious. (Do I really need to be producing a music video-style Instagram reel every week?

There is a voice that doesn’t use words. Listen!
– Rumi

The actual painting part of my work is always a happy place for me. The combination of being of service and having my attention grounded into the creative process provides a respite from the pinball machine mindset of self-doubt and overthinking. Last month I was hired by a repeat client in Burlingame to create a unique style for each of her daughters’ bedrooms. This client gave me a similar assignment when they moved into a new house two years ago, but after giving it their best try, they realized as a family that they loved their old house and neighborhood, so they decided to move back to the house that felt like home. It was interesting how the girls’ tastes had evolved (or not) over the past two years.

The oldest daughter, Audrey, pulled from Victorian-era style trends for her design. She had gold fixtures and a stained glass window installed in the bathroom. I suggested metallic gold on the ceiling and in the corner, a large floral ornament with her favorite flowers:  dahlia, lily, roses, and baby’s breath. In order to soften the corner angles I continued the artwork across the door in the corner, up onto the gold ceiling, and then draped it over the baseboard onto the floor.  The gold and floral elements fit in the Victorian theme while breaking with convention of a white ceiling and limiting paint to only the walls. For any DIYers out there, I rolled on PPG Metallic Tones paint sold at Home Depot without tinting it. It took 5 coats to cover, the last coat hand-brushed out to make sure there were no roller lines. The color was exactly to my liking, not too yellow or brassy. 

flowers on the wall

Same corner, before the artwork:

wall before painted with flowers

In case you missed it, here is the dreamy four-wall mural I painted for Audrey in 2021:

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The youngest daughter, Ellie has had a mural of mine on her wall since she was eight. You can watch the video I made from our first collaboration in 2012 here. (With over 400,000 views, think of all the mural-making our collaboration has inspired, Ellie!) Ellie will be a senior in high school this year.  It’s art enthusiasts like Ellie who keep me in business! Her creative request this time around was still aligned with her cozy childhood vision of a big tree anchored in the corner, calming and protective, with as many cute animals, including their three dogs and two cats, into the mural as possible. She is back in her old room but we repainted the mural onto a new wall so that she can enjoy the view when she is lying in bed:

Morgan and her art

In case you missed it, here is what I painted in Ellies room in 2021:

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Mom got in the custom art game this round and we settled on ranunculus in the laundry room. The peach base color she chose inspired my color palette. I wanted the oversized blossoms to feel fun and fresh, but not overwhelm the small space.

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I was super inspired by my latest podcast episode with Meridith Winner, cofounder of the global, women-led arts production agency Building 180. Meredith also cofounded Paint the Void, which has covered over 150 boarded-up storefronts in San Francisco with murals from local artists. As an artist herself, as well as a business owner and advocate for the arts, she has a unique lens on the public and commercial artmaking process. She speaks her truth with candor and has a great sense of humor so this episode is both insightful and a lot of fun.

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I am pleased to report a happy ending to my inner conflict. My scary inner voice did not go away but I am currently enjoying a broader perspective. With Thanksgiving around the corner, I have been pondering the blessings that have come into my life this year. With gratitude as a retrospective flashlight, I can see how I have been cuddled, sandwiched, and snowballed by grace this year. In spite of trying less, doing less, and showing less, the new blessings in my life have been abundant and extraordinary. Perhaps the biggest blessing is the realization that when I am well rested and not rushed or pushing myself towards productivity, I enjoy my life so much more! I’m so much nicer! Life feels full of possibility! Feeling good leads me to be more forgiving, patient, and kind towards myself and everyone else. It’s easy to call you “love” and also see you as that. Enjoying life from this vantage point is more important than any external accomplishment to me. I am committed to “gently down the stream” from here on out. 

Enjoy your Thanksgiving break. 

With love,

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Morgan Bricca
Morgan Bricca

Morgan Bricca is an accomplished mural artist known for her captivating and vibrant creations. With a background in graphic design and a passion for public art, Morgan has transformed numerous spaces into visually stunning masterpieces. Her meticulous attention to detail and ability to capture the essence of a subject bring her murals to life. Inspired by nature and human connection, Morgan's work has graced walls across the United States, leaving a lasting impression on all who encounter it. Through her art, Morgan continues to inspire and uplift communities, creating joy and beauty for all to enjoy.

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