ATLANTA, Ga. (CBS46) -- To find some inspiration just head to Midtown, Atlanta. There you will find a newly installed iconic six-story public art installation.

The mural is thought-provoking while telling the city’s history. The mural sends a message of hope during some grim times. The art installation is a tribute to the Westside community, it also celebrates the city going through adversity yet always rising up.

"It's very vibrant," said one Atlantan of the piece.

The work catches the attention of almost everyone who walks by.

"It's really in a good spot too, people can drive by and see it, and they can be inspired," said another person.

It's also the kind of canvas artists dream of, six stories high and can be seen from blocks away.

"Normally my paintings range between 24x24 inches all the way up to 10'x10'," said artist Craig Alan. "So yeah, this is definitely my first venture outside of the canvas realm."

And much like a phoenix rising from the ashes, this phoenix has also had quite a journey.

"Normally when I am in my studio and creating my pieces physically, it's through a process where I use the camera to capture individual motions and dynamics. From that I create stencils and then I physically apply paint to the surface," said Craig of his creative process.  

However, for a mural Craig would need to scale his work to be larger, plus he needed time, but was on a tight deadline with limited assistance.

"I went straight to working on the computer digitally and this is the first time I had done this," he said. "A lot of the detail had to be digitally painted in."

The phoenix is featured on West Midtown's 8West building facing Howell Mill Road at the corner of 8th Street.

"In America everything starts from the ground up, and so I though it was appropriate that the title should be from the ground up as an inspiration," he added.

Painting something beautiful is just part of the mural's story. 

"So in the bottom right I see Hank Aaron in the Atlanta Braves uniform, I see Killer Mike up there with his left hand pointed up. On the far right I see Martin Luther King and a sign of Grady Memorial representing the essential workers," said one observer.

"In this picture you see how tight everyone is, I think it's trying to point out how we need to be together in this movement," said another.

Other notable Atlanta figures featured in "From the Ground Up" are Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, William Hartsfield and Maynard Jackson, rap duo Outkast and media mogul Ted Turner.

Copyright 2020 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.


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