Painting is their passion

CNJ staff photo: Liliana Castillo Tasha Hicks, left, and friend Megen Graddy work on a mural Friday on the west side of Bike Dude, a bike store on Grand Street. The two childhood friends are artists and hope to start a business.

By Liliana Castillo: CNJ staff writer

Two artists are hoping to paint their way into a new business in Clovis.

Childhood friends Tasha Hicks and Megen Graddy, both 22, decided they’d like to paint murals for a living.

They started by offering their work for free — with a mural for a store on Grand Street called Bike Dude.

The mural, the pair said, includes Andy Warhol-style pop art with a face and patterns of bicycles.

Hicks said the best way to start a business is to get your name out there.

“If a mural is good, people will see it and get interested and will go up and see the signature of the artist,” she said.

Bike Dude Owner Grant McGee said he was thinking about utilizing a blank wall on the west side of the building for a mural.

“If someone is coming from that way,” McGee said, “they don’t see our sign until they’re past us.”

Besides providing advertising, the pair said murals say something about a town.

“A mural can change the entire look of a building,” Graddy said. “It sends out a good vibe too. It shows that the people really care about their business.”

Hicks, who moved to Clovis three years ago when her husband was stationed at Cannon Air Force Base, said she and Graddy have had professional training as artists. Hicks painted and drew items for her squadron while she was in the Army. Graddy has sold her paintings.

The two said they hope to paint murals indoors and outdoors.

“We’ll paint anywhere someone will let us paint,” Graddy said.