While local artist Brian McLachlan has been busily restoring his recently vandalized Hall Street mural, many passersby have been inundating him with chitchat.
“I learned very quickly that I need to concentrate and talk at the same time,” said McLachlan. “It’s actually a lot harder than it sounds.”
But McLachlan is happy for the company while he restores his piece, which originally took approximately seven months and 2,000 hours to complete.
“It’s nice to be back there on the street talking to people. It brought back all my memories of doing the mural way back 13, 14 years ago. Some just stand and look at it, others ask me question,” he said.
McLachlan interviewed members of the community for inspiration in creating the portraits featured in the mural, which is divided into four themes: early times, mining, forestry and arts and culture.
It features images of aboriginal culture, the hydro electric generating plant and Silver King Mine.
“The community response has been awesome,” said McLachlan, who said quite a few people are invested in the mural’s longevity. Unfortunately, some in the community aren’t as appreciative.
“The biggest shock was one of the portraits was completely painted over. In a way, it was quite amazing it lasted this long without something more serious. But it was so strange because I finished fixing it up and a week later I walked by and someone had painted a two-foot by two-foot black blob in the canoe section. It was completely mindless.”
McLachlan repainted that portion at his own expense.