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  • Molly Keen

Murals, Molly and Thailand.

Updated: Nov 15, 2020

Creating a mural midst the full moon madness. Is the hype all that they say it is? Koh Phangan revealed and a beautiful new mural of mine!

"I had to see what the hype was all about, visiting the island of Koh Phangan. I felt like I couldn't leave Thailand without experiencing some of its most famous parts."

About the Mural

My Thailand mural is entitled ‘Secret Forest' and it stands 18 feet wide by 12 feet tall on a bit of a hillside. I was so lucky to have the help of some Burmese helpers to put together a makeshift scaffolding for me lowering it foot by foot as needed.

Where: Shiralea Hostel in Koh Phangan, Thailand. In the Northern part of the island, this part of the island had incredible beaches and full of ex-pats (a person who lives outside their native country) with delicious but overpriced food. I most ventured outside of this part of the island but it was relaxing and I was happy to call it home.

Dimensions: 18' x 12' x 0'

What: A mural entitled "The Secret Jungle" a Acrylic large scale, public mural located just one block from white sandy beaches and Rastafarian jungle parties.

Enjoy the time-lapse I created for you!

If some of you have been following me for a while, you know that I love time-lapses. I love showcasing the process. Not only to see all the work that goes into the piece, and how incredibly mesmerizing it is to see a large artwork come together, but I do it because this is the part I love the most. I want viewers to feel like they are along for the ride and aware of everything the goes into the piece!

About the Process


The above pictures shown here are the realized design idea that we were working on and then the finished design. I usually digitally paint on my iPad because I can use a stylus and feel like I am still painting. On the road I use photoshop on my laptop which is a bit more difficult, hence why the before and after are similar but you can't really understand the final product until there is paint applied directly to the walls. Additionally, a lot can change while painting, sometimes ideas that look great on paper do not appear the same on the wall, so there has to be room for flexibility, creativity, and a little but of not planning if you will.

But what does the mural mean?!?

I wanted this piece to feel like you stepped out of time and found yourself in a secret place, a self-discovery of sorts through this looking glass of a wall. It reveals not just images pleasing to the eye, but a world to discover. The full moon, its phases around it just as important and vital in the process of lunar cycles.

"Look closer and one will discover something new, something they did not see at first glance."

About the Island

The island of Koh Phangan is known for its full moon party, which I did not attend and did not desire to. But I wanted to take this event around the full moon, which actually has nothing to do with honoring the full moon, and create a mural that honored not only the fullness of the moon but each cycle as well. Inside the mural, you will find the full moon, and then around it are 8 circles that represent the waning and waxing of its beauty.

The Start of my 3 months and beyond journey...

My first time in southeast Asia, I flew into Bangkok the capital of Thailand with over 8.2 million people living in the city. It is huge and there are two main tourist places that are filled with hostels and hotels. I stayed at Bed Station hostel complete with a pool and bar and it was a great place to land to. My flight took about 24 hours total with 2 legs of the journey. I took off in San Francisco and then landed in Shanghai with a 5-hour layover. After we set off to Bangkok 5 hours total of a flight. I arrived at 2 am and met a friend from New York where we shared a cab and explored Bangkok till the early morning. I was so happy to have a place to sleep and catch up on the time difference. (#bangkok, #SoutheastAsia, #Khopangan)

Off to Ko Tao and Koh Phangan!

Traveling by boat and lots of night bus riding.

"I love riding a scooter. Maybe it is my love for cycling but I love being alone on the road with my hair in the wind and the sun on my skin. ."

It was my first time I ever rode a scooter and the man working the scooter place said that he was scared for me and unsure if he wanted to rent it to me. I knew I would be fine, although a bit nervous. I was a natural. I think it was all the cycling knowledge but I fell in love. I took advantage of the motor and was able to see every road on all the islands that I visited. Pure ecstasy I couldn't believe how much I loved it. Say what you want about the islands of Thailand, on a scooter, it is just you and the road. This was the redeeming part of the travel for me.

Tidbit of history of the Full Moon Parties

More about the full moon party: It started, as most successful festivals and gatherings and gatherings start, as a peaceful gathering of earth-loving people who stayed in tents and it was small and quiet. You could call them hippies but that's how it started and I am not sure about the exact origin but much less plastic, noise, and people around 1988. I did not attend the gathering but it seemed most people that I met were excited about it. Prices on the island triple for the three days that people come and then poof they are gone.

Southern Thailand is a great place to go if it is your first time traveling...

I want to mention that I do have an appreciation for Thailand. I love the food, the business, and the smiles on the faces of Thai people. I love the climate, the geography, and the animals that I would meet daily. After traveling throughout South America and getting to know so many beautiful travelers I felt like this country was missing something when it came to tourism. There was a lack of 'togetherness' from one traveler to another. I saw a lot of people on their phones and not to mention never one local person on any of the buses I took. It felt like a tourist bubble, something I had never experienced before.

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