It all began in 1997 in the East Village of downtown San Diego. Downtown San Diego was still considered a scary place. Local drug dealers were using electrical boxes found on virtually every corner as makeshift offices. .... A local publisher named Rex Edhlund created a paper called D-Town, the Downtown Paper to collect the thoughts of these like minded individuals.... Candace Lopez. In her monthly column, Nurture the Neighborhood, she launched the Urban Art Trail.
A local graphic design professor at San Diego City College, Candace had the idea to cover the metal obstructions with colorful graphics and enlisted the help of her students at San Diego City College and the American Institute of Graphic Arts San Diego. Securing permission from the Centre City Development Corporation and utility companies over on hundred volunteers initially transformed the blight with powerful artwork. (source)
Can you imagine what a tremendous change that would have made? Painting ugly, gang marked electrical boxes over in brightly coloured murals? Addling light and colour and removing the "this is ours" mindset from the folks doing business around them.
If you go to this page you can see some of the art they did to change a community.
And that's the book, a girl, with a thought about adding colour to the grey, dismal world around her, and she gets help from a man, and then they draw in all sorts of other people, and before you know it, there are splashes of bright colour everywhere. I can just sit back and imagine the joy and gasps of amazement that would bring.
The joy and amazement is brought out in this book so very clearly. And the Muralist said as his eyes sparkled ""You, my friends, are all artists" he told them. "The world is your canvas." He smiled wide, then pulled everything together in big, sweeping motions."