What Are Traffic Box Wraps?
Traffic control boxes are the large metal boxes that control traffic signals - they are also prime targets for graffiti. We are covering 20 of these boxes with artistic wraps that will not only beautify our City but will greatly reduce the amount of graffiti on the boxes and the maintenance hours required to clean them.
Local artists submitted 131 designs that were voted on by the public online on the City's Facebook page and in-person at The Olympia Center. Over 25,000 votes were cast and the top 10 for both the Westside and Downtown are being fabricated in heavy-duty vinyl and will be installed later this Fall.
In addition to the artwork, our downtown traffic box wraps will feature pedestrian wayfinding maps on one side.
Downtown Winning Wrap Designs
>View Westside Winners >View Eastside Winners
Artist: Nikki McClure
Original Medium: Papercut
Location: 5th Ave & Washington St
What if Downtown Olympia was a place where children could safely ride their bikes to the Library or the Farmers Market? Could we make safe bike paths that cross our city, North to South, East to West? Maybe this image will encourage bike riding downtown by all ages. There is freedom in bike riding under your own power, deciding your own speed and direction, riding through the future that has been sowed.
Artist: Mimi Williams
Original Medium: Linoleum Cut Block Print
Location: State Ave & Capitol Way
The image is Boston Harbor Marina and the Dofflemeyer Lighthouse with the Olympic Mountains in the background. The setting evokes memories of boating in Puget Sound as well as the potential adventures. I titled it “Buoyed’ because metaphorically there is safety in being tied to a buoy and you are less likely to drift out to sea.
Artist: Doyle Fanning
Title: Summer Flowers with Sky
Original Medium: Photo Collage
Location: Capitol Way & Legion St
The inspiration for this art work is simple: Summer in Olympia. There is nothing quite like it. Blue skies over Budd Bay filled with lightweight clouds / garden flowers in full bloom / reflections of trees and clouds that shimmer and skip on the waters of Capital Lake. Everything is lit up during the summer. It is my hope that this art work will light up the darker days of fall and winter and call to mind memories of summer past.
Inspiration for “Summer Flowers with Sky” came as I sat in Rotary Park taking pictures of the sky and then visited a friend to find her garden in full bloom – daisies, crocosmia, geraniums.
And there is some connection I feel but can’t quite articulate with traffic “lights” and the “light” of summer that will perhaps be felt by others as they drive or walk past these boxes that serve to control and regulate lights.
Artist: Robert Hunter
Title: Night Life
Original Medium: Digital Photo
Location: 4th Ave & Cherry St
Ideas and compositions for “Night Life” were the result of having viewed numerous beautiful sunsets from our home on East Bay Drive. Dramatic changes in light, even over a two hour period at the end of the day produce great variations in pattern, color, and effect. While photo images have substantial impact on their own, I chose to bring pictures through photo shop as I have used and taught classes on this wonderful, innovative software since its inception.
My view to the South from home provides almost a “bulls-eye” focus on the capital. As the dome is an iconic presence for Olympia it seemed natural to me to incorporate architecture into the plan, an image many people would recognize and be symbolic of Olympia. Also, the skyline of Olympia from this perspective may not be one that visitors to our city are familiar with, adding an extra dimension to this profile of our environment.
Digital filters were incorporated in “Night Life” to create a “layered effect.” Artistic tools like conte crayon, airbrush, and colored paint daubs were used, as well as textural tools that help define the finished piece. Most of the natural light and color were left alone to be adjusted by Photoshop technology.
Variety and variation are what come to mind when I think of what Olympia stands for. We have a diverse population of young people, working people, students, retired folks and legislative personnel. The challenge for me for this project was to complete a visual statement that would add color, interest, and perspective to the downtown area while appealing to many.
Artist: Jane Wingfield
Title: Peach Rhodys
Original Medium: Watercolor Sketch
Location: Capitol Way & Union Ave
Utility boxes with personality. I love the idea. Being a long-time resident of the Olympia community I wanted to respond to the call with something that represents the community and its place in the state. I chose the Capitol dome nested in spring rhododendrons—both emblematic of our place.
I considered a more graphic style, but decided to go with my persona – Olysketcher.
Simply put, I love sketching. I’ve worked with oils, watercolors, handmade paper and other mediums over the years, but always a little frustrated with not having enough time to complete major projects. A few years ago my son gave me a small sketchbook with the most scrumptious handmade Italian paper. When I had the opportunity to travel, I took the sketchbook with me; it became my favorite souvenir. The sketches bring me right back to the location where I gathered the wonderful memories.
I discovered Urban Sketchers in 2009 and was immediately committed. Urban sketchers International was started by the Seattle Times sketchjournalist, Gabriel Campanario, aka The Seattle Sketcher. Hundreds of thousands of sketches have been posted on the international blogs, flickr facebook pages from every corner of the earth.
What I love about urban sketching is that I can do art anywhere I am – no need for a studio with expensive materials. I believe that art enriches our lives immensely and I love sharing the experience of opening our eyes to see the world one sketch at a time.
This design was drawn and painted on location at the state Capitol grounds on May 3, just as Crop Walk was gathering on the Capitol steps. Bagpipers blared their encouragement and a few people came over to peek as I sat perched on my stool near the bushes.
Artist: Robyn Chance
Title: Fish in the Wind
Original Medium: Open Acrylic Painting
Location: Capitol Way & 4th Ave
I wanted to capture a colorful, lively moment that was in movement; a snap shot of a beautiful day, or memory. A moment of feeling free and inspired. My daughter is Chinese, and in 2008 I created my first children’s picture book for her, entitled, C is for China. In that book, I created a watercolor illustration of fish kites flying in the wind. That illustration really seemed to resonate with people. I thought it would be fun to bring that same joy, whimsy, movement and color to a larger scale painting, and, giving myself a chance to play, I used open acrylic paints for this painting rather than watercolor.
Artist: Dave Sanders
Title: Crank It Up
Original Medium: Digital Illustration
Location: 4th Ave & Columbia St
Inspiration for this design is drawn from a whimsical perspective of a day passing from morning until evening and in the final analysis, it is people that give energy and direction to the unfolding of each moment. As an artist, I am constantly exploring the line between fantasy and reality. Combining elements that alone would not seem compatible, yet with the twist of my mind, they somehow function together. My desire is to make you smile first and think second.
Artist: Jennifer Kuhns
Original Medium: Mosaic
Location: Capitol Way & 5th Ave
My specialty is stained glass mosaic, with emphasis on use of reclaimed materials. I collect stained glass scraps from leaded and fused glass artists, and tiles are scavenged from contractors, tile setters, and salvage yards. The bases for my fine art panels are leftover tile boards, cupboard doors, and old windows.
I am deeply interested in folk art, particularly that of my Baltic heritage, as well as my husband’s Mexican heritage. I am amazed by how similar the traditional artwork is from each of our backgrounds, and I find that it is inspired by the same themes of interconnection between humans and nature, and cycles of life and death. Often, I am overwhelmed by horrific news stories involving genocide, poverty, endangerment of species, natural disasters, climate change…and I feel compelled to create something cheerful and beautiful as a kind of catharsis. I hope my work brings joy and solace to viewers as well.
To my great surprise and delight, mosaic is my official job. My days are spent in a studio 30 miles West of Olympia on 5.3 acres nestled between the Black Hills. Pursuing a career as an artist has allowed me to be available for my daughter, grow my own food, and care for a menagerie of animals (chickens, goats, ducks, dogs, cats and ferrets, a snake.) I appreciate the versatility of mosaic, as I’ve been able to generate income through architectural commissions in homes and businesses, public art, and exhibits, along with some gallery sales. I usually have three very different projects in progress at any one time, which prevents me from getting bored.
My connection to other artists has been essential to my own work. Over the years, I have consulted and collaborated with fellow artists working in a variety of mediums, and the advice, critique, camaraderie, brainstorming, and networking has helped me to develop my work and to keep from being a hermit working in complete isolation. In 2009, I joined the Society of American Mosaic Artists and began attending the annual American Mosaic Summit. Through these events and participation in other online mosaic forums, my technique and understanding of this ancient, yet utterly contemporary medium has grown exponentially. Even as I am grasping the more nuanced aspects of skillful mosaic, I recognize how much there is to learn. I look forward to mastering use of hue and value to create a sense of depth and dimension, as well as becoming adept at creating 3-dimensional substrates for large-scale sculptural mosaic. Most importantly, I am working to hone my personal style, and finding the best avenues to share my work with the public.
Artist: Tai Hicks
Title: Far From Home
Original Medium: Acrylic Painting
Location: Legion Way & Washington St
I am an Olympia based self-taught artist and member of the International Association of Astronomical Artists. Over the years, my work has blossomed into something between the real and surreal with a focus on honey bees, dreams, and the cosmos. I have explored many mediums and have found that I am best able to realize my visions through painting. My inspiration is drawn from many wells, including science fiction, fantasy, nature, and dreams.
Artist: deAna McDonald Lopez
Original Medium: Photograph
Location: 4th Ave & Franklin St
My name is deAna McDonald-Lopez, I was raised in Phoenix, AZ, but have grown up in Olympia, WA. I rest my head in the PNW and my soul resides here. I am constantly looking up in search of clouds or beautiful landscapes of any kind. I will be the first to let you know how amazing the sky looks, day or night, every chance I get. There is magic all around us, if only, we care to take a moment to look. I am also very inspired by the talented Mr. Maynard James Keenan - which is where I got the titles for the concepts, for the Transit Wrap Project. I am a life-pedestrian and I will definitely notice, with much anticipation, the likes of art filling the streets. And, I keep my head in the clouds, reaching for the random, or whatever will bewilder... Breathe – A photograph near Lower Lake Lena in March 2015. Strive to make this world a little more beautiful.