Tue | Apr 25, 2017

From the streets to cyberspace

Published:Monday | December 22, 2014 | 12:00 AMShereita Grizzle
File A Paint Jamaica mural.
File The Paint Jamaica team in front of one of their creations.
Contributed Photo Andrew Bruce of Plant Jamaica in front of one of the paintings done with Paint Jamaica and residents of Fleet Street in downtown Kingston. The projects are geared towards engaging residents in Southside, Central Kingston, in sustainable farming, furniture making and art.
Photos by Amitabh Sharma Colours of inspiration and brush strokes of renewed hope....volunteers of Paint Jamaica bring walls in Fleet Street, downtown Kingston to life
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The Paint Jamaica team is serious about continuing the project in 2015. They are so determined that they have transformed some of their art pieces into domestic merchandise and officially launched an online store.

Artwork that has lined the walls of Fleet Street in downtown Kingston have been made into mugs, clocks, cushions, calendars, tote bags, and framed prints and are currently on sale at society6.com/paintjamaica.

When The Gleaner spoke to Marianna Farag, project organiser and key member of the Paint Jamaica team, she said the idea for an online store came through feedback the team received from their growing fan base.

"After we finished our first project, we started to receive feedback that people loved the mural art and wanted to see it on various merchandise - from T-shirts to postcards," she said. "Throughout our second project, we kept getting more requests, and it was a clear indicator that something needed to be done."

The decision to make it an online venture was as a result of how global the project has become.

"Given that the project is being followed around the world, we felt an online platform with worldwide shipping would be most logical at this point," Farag said.

She also said that in the future, the team would love to make connections with a local producer and manufacturer to help expand its reach on a national level.

Though Farag maintained that it is too early to tell if this new Paint Jamaica venture will be a success, she is hopeful that it will, at the very least, shed further light on the Fleet Street transformation. She says fans have been reacting positively to the move.

"We (Paint Jamaica) communicate heavily via social media, and the reaction seems positive so far. Many people have shared the news or sent us messages in support of the initiative," Farag said.

Prices of the items from the Paint Jamaica online store range from US$15 to US$30, with worldwide shipping available. All proceeds will go towards future Paint Jamaica projects, as the team is still eyeing expansion in 2015.

shereita.grizzle@gleanerjm.com