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Metro Movies Mural

Metro Movies Mural

The Metro Movies Mural resides in Middletown, CT and is over 3000 square feet.  In this mural I painted 9 large scale portraits of local residents and added my children and wife in there as well.  The mural faces route 9 and will be seen by a million people a year.

finished mural

This project was conceived in February of 2016 and I started the project in August after going through the planning process with the town.  Once it was approved I created a game plan that allowed me to move freely through the project in a timely manner.  The entirety of the Metro Movies Mural was 23 days.

Press received during project:

MIddletown Press

Fox 61 News

Hartford Courant

Fox 61 News (with timelapse)

metro movies mural

I started with a photoshoot of the people I wanted to use in the mural.  From there I added these photos to a picture I took of the building using photoshop.  This gave me an idea of the layout and how I would next create a process to paint it.

Next I took the same image and created a grid over it.  I took the measurements of the building and created a set of squares that would represent 2 feet by 2 feet on the building.  This gave me the ability to break these large portraits up into sections.  At this point I need to create a set of references to use while painting.  With something this big and being so close to the building it would be hard to judge what I was doing was correct.  I then decided to print our each square individually and just paint them one at a time.  It was kinda like trusting the bubble in a level was accurate.

mike sundell movie mural

I then picked up my paint, an exterior grade from Sherwin Williams.  5 colors primarily is what I used.  Like a typewriter I just went back and forth until a portrait was complete.  I lucked out with the weather as well.  It was sunny for most of the entire time.  And although that was nice it did add some challenges like dry time of the paint and and nice farmers tan.  All in all though I could not have asked for better weather.


Through the Metro Movies Mural I had 3 to 4 visitors today and received a great response from the local residents.  I also was fortunate to have a good amount of press being in the Middletown Press (cover) , the Hartford Courant and on Fox 61 news one night.  This was truly a wonderful experience and I am glad the owners decided to commission me to create this mural as a gift to the town.

fox 61 news with the movie mural

To see more pictures of the process feel free to view my instagram at:

middletown mural middletown movies mural    bekah b in the movie mural

Portrait of Burt Young

burt young I had the honor of being introduced to the amazing Burt Young.  Burt is an incredible man and a talented artist.  I am paraphrasing a bit here but he told me that all he needs is a canvas and some colors and he is happy as can be.  After spending some time with Burt and getting to know him a bit I decided to start my painting of him.  I pick one of the original Rocky films where he portrayed Uncle Paulie in.  I felt this was such a great way to immortalize him and it is such a classic character.   He seemed to like it very much and that is my story, I am sticking to it!


rocky steps

Junior League of Hartford

Every three years the Junior League of Hartford (JLH) takes over a unique home or estate in the greater Hartford area, selects regional designers to makeover the interior spaces and surrounding grounds, and sells tickets to the public for viewing of the completed house. I have supported this for most of my career and donated work to 3 house and 5 designers.  Here is one of my favorite paintings done for designer, Cynthia Hernandez.

jr league showhouse

The JLH has held 12 Decorator Show Houses over a 30-year span, and has raised more than $1.25 million for its programs and projects.

The Decorator Show House is the JLH’s largest event-based fundraiser. All proceeds support our mission of “promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women and improving communities through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers.”

cynthia hernandez

M.J. Petretto Foundation

The M.J. Petretto Foundation is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization established in 2009 as part of Retirement Planning Group’s commitment to give back time, talent and money to support the efforts of Connecticut not-for-profits. The Foundation’s mission is to fund organizations that support education health, and quality of life to build stronger Connecticut communities. The Foundation was also inspired by a 2008 automobile accident that nearly claimed the life of M.J.’s nephew, Jesse. He suffered a spinal cord injury that changed his life,and hers, forever. Each year The MJ Petretto Foundation Golf Classic will help fund Gaylord Hospital’s Spinal Cord Injury Program and other non-profit Connecticut Organizations. In 2011, they added Parkinson’s Disease Research and Programs to their list of charities and in  2013, they donated to Make A Wish® Connecticut. This year they are pleased to announce the addition of Shoreline Arts Alliance.

golf hole

Canvas Peace Project

sudan peace projectI was asked a few years ago from a fellow artist if i could do a painting for a charity that she has organized.  When I asked her about the charity and her involvement I was overwhelmed and without a doubt I knew I was participating in this.  Below is a blurb from this friend and a link to the site she started to support this cause. Please take the time to click on the link and explore the site. “Through The Canvas Peace Project artists learn about what women in South Sudan have endured for decades. The hope is that through the power of art we can educate the public about the ongoing conflicts in the region and provide opportunity for many of these women.”

– Cynthia Davis, Artist

sudan canvas project patrick ganino

canvas peace project

canvas peace project



Frederick Brewster Elementary School Painting of Ralphie

finished ralphieLast year I was contacted about doing a painting for an elementary school.  The staff called and told me of a boy named Ralphie who passed away too young, and that they wanted to create something special for the family to honor their son.  This touched me hard being that I am a father of three.  This was a project that I was eager to create and one that I would push off for months.  Looking back I realize that it wasn’t my schedule getting in the way to complete this painting it was me.  I needed this painting to be something amazing for this family who had to go thru something I could not even begin to imagine.  Below is the painting, “Ralhie”.

ralphie painting


elementary school letter