Wall Mural Preparation
- Repaint or clean the wall that will feature the lightning bolt mural. Clean latex-painted walls with liquid dish detergent applied to a damp sponge and dry the wall thoroughly with towels. Cover baseboards, windows, windowsills and door frames with painter's tape or newspapers held into place with masking tape to protect the finishes from paint drips. Move furniture from the room or away from the wall. Use drop cloths to protect flooring. Wall surfaces do not have to be completely flat to paint murals.
- Affix a store-bought stencil to the area to be painted with painter's tape or masking tape; or make your own stencil. Draw or trace a lightning bolt onto stiff cardboard or card stock in the actual size you wish to paint onto the wall. Use scissors or a craft knife to cut the material from the inside of the traced lightning bolt. Affix the homemade stencil to the wall where you wish the lightning bolt to appear on the mural with painter's tape or masking tape. Use a pencil to trace within the stencil lines to draw a lightning bolt. Remove the stencil. Paint the lightning bolt onto the wall using oil, latex or acrylic paints. Allow one paint color to dry before applying a different color to avoid paint bleed. Outline the lightning bolt with paint or a wide tip permanent marker. Painter's tape is preferred because it is formulated to remove easily from painted surfaces without removing paint.
- Rent, borrow or purchase an overhead projector from a library, school, home improvement, office supply or teacher supply store. Find an image of a lightning bolt in a picture book, coloring book or other paper source that you can use to place on the overhead projector and project onto the wall. Adjust the height and distance of the projector to make the lightning bolt the desired size on the wall mural. Some overhead projectors require you to trace the design onto a clear plastic sheet called a transparency before the image can project onto a wall. Project the image onto the wall and trace it with a pencil. Paint the lightning bolt onto the wall and allow the paint to dry.
- Draw a lightning bolt onto the wall's surface freehand with a pencil. Envision a letter Z set on an angle, or look at a simple lightning bolt illustration while drawing. Use an art eraser to erase any mistakes. When you have the lightning bolt drawn the way you wish it to appear on the wall mural, paint the lightning bolt. Allow the paint to dry before outlining it with a different color of paint or permanent marker.