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Livening up Santa Cruz with mural and watercolor artist Mckella Jo

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 | August 15, 2019

By Sarah Guidon

You’ve seen Mckella Jo’s murals all over Santa Cruz — inside stores, outside buildings, in private residences, breweries, and even in offices. She also does intricate watercolor paintings of every flower, bird and fish imaginable, which can be purchased at local shops like Botanic and Luxe, the Lumen Gallery and Mountainside Made. Basically anywhere that’s known for tasteful interior decor, Mckella Jo’s work can be found.

Mckella Jo grew up in Santa Cruz, but spent her summers visiting her dad in Oregon or Montana where they would go camping and rafting. This is where Mckella got her love of nature and sunshine, and also her love of painting. As early as age 5, when her dad had to work he’d set her up with art supplies and let her paint all over the walls! This was a dream come true for a kid, to have the creative freedom to do something that is normally so against the rules. 

This definitely set the stage for a future career — Mckella started her mural and art business three years ago, and has been at it full time for about a year and a half. She’s grateful for a community that embraces public art and full-time makers, and allows people like her to pursue her dreams.

We’re stoked that Mckella will be joining us at the Big East Side Block Party on Friday, August 30th from 5:30-9 at the new East Side Pono Hawaiian Grill! We can’t wait to see you all there, this one’s gonna be a doozy!

See more of Mckella’s work at @McKellajo

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