Public Arts Midland: Outside the Box

The Public Arts Midland committee has selected eight artists in Midland county to design and paint eight city owned utility boxes in and around the downtown Midland area in July of 2022. These boxes will be transformed into mini murals!

Murals have always been powerful tools to educate and inform community members over a wide variety of topics. As Public Arts Midland’s vision statement notes, “We believe that art connects, heals, inspires, teaches, and speaks to us in myriad ways that build stronger and more vibrant communities.”  Public art gives our community a collective voice and a platform to express these values, while also bringing awareness to the beauty of our city’s physical and cultural landscape.



Locations + Meet The Artists:


Location 1: Main & Townsend
Artist: Selena Ashley

Artist Bio/Statement: My mission for Selena Ashley Designs is to create art that provokes joy and confidence. I hope that my art feels unique and empowering. I try to see the blessing in even the tiniest moments and I hope to inspire you to do the same.
Connect: WebsiteInstagram


Location 2: Main & Poseyville
Artist: Allise Noble + Creative 360

Artist Bio/Statement: Allise Noble is a local award winning artist who directs an inclusive arts and wellness program for all ages and abilities at Creative 360 in Midland. Her work is inspired by an appreciation for the natural world and all living things that inhabit it, and the healing power of creativity. With her art she aims to make the internal external, and connect with viewers based on their own unique experiences. She believes that everyone can be an artist – each person on earth has the ability to do something creative that can touch another person, and it is never too late to begin.
For this Community Arts Project, Allise is joined by her Creative 360 colleagues: Laura Brigham, Anna Martin, Colleen Reed, Arlo Turpin and Laura Vosejpka.
Connect: Website


Location 3: Bay City & Rockwell
Artist: Jordan Taylor Switala

Artist Bio/Statement: My name is Jordan Taylor Switala. I grew up in the Bullock Creek area and have been a Midland based artist my whole life. Most of my art styles are self-taught as I did not have access to many art classes in school. I currently work at Black Ball Tattoo in Midland as an artist and have been doing so for seven years. I enjoy rain storms and caramel lattes.
Connect: Instagram


Location 4: Main & Ashman
Artist: Trish Donnelly

Artist Bio/Statement: Trish Donnelly is a local Midland artist, originally from North Branford Connecticut. She began showing a particular interest in art at a very young age, and focused on it in advanced courses throughout school. In 2016 she began her tattooing apprenticeship, and has since opened her own private art and tattoo studio in Downtown Midland where she is able to apply her passion at work.
“My creative work includes tattooing, drawing(digitally and traditionally), painting, sculpting and simply creating using whatever tools are available to me. In my day to day work I am a tattoo artist, however I do not limit myself to any one particular medium or style. The variety of mediums I use often inspire and are evident within one another in my work. For example I often include elements of black and gray realism in my tattoo work as an extension of my initial background in graphite and charcoal realism drawing, and elements of American traditional tattooing style in my paintings and drawings as an extension of what I’ve picked up as a tattoo artist. In this way art itself is transformative, as well as having the ability to transform otherwise mundane objects into something beautiful.”
Connect: InstagramMatchbox Tattoo Instagram


Location 5: Waldo & Patrick
Artist: Annie Stout

Artist Bio/Statement: Annie Stout is an artist and graphic designer based in Midland, MI. She is a multi-passionate creative who works with a wide variety of mediums. Her love of art stems from a compulsive need to create. Annie believes that creating is a cathartic practice that everyone can benefit from. A jack of all trades, Annie is still always looking to learn new skills and try new techniques. She has owned and operated Paper Heart Design since 2008, where she specializes in small business branding as a graphic designer, in addition to creativity coaching services, writing for her creative living blog, and creating fine art. Though she frequently works in the digital world of art, she still very much loves to paint, build, and teach art in analog ways. Her goal as an artist is to highlight beauty in the ordinary, and to create conversations that lead to connection and community.
Connect: WebsiteInstagramFacebook


Location 6: Main & Rodd
Artist: Desiree Hund

Artist Bio/Statement: My name is Desiree Hund. I’ve been painting since 2015 as a hobby, making homemade gifts for friends and family over the years. My brothers were always very creative and proficient in their artistic abilities since they were young but I never had the patience for art as a child. I now look forward to the peace that comes with zoning in and creating a new piece or learning new techniques. I’ve branched from painting and have grown to truly enjoy drawing, which includes my large 12×12 mandalas. I’ve been making jewelry for a number of years as well, to give as gifts to my loved ones. Art has made more of an impact in my life than I had ever thought it would. I’ve been involved in Midland’s art scene since July of 2020 when I was commissioned to paint a cement barricade downtown, transforming it into a giant honeycomb. It was then that I was introduced to Jazzmyn Benitez who welcomed me to participate in Art Seen of 2021 to be one of her assistants in completing her mural design on the back of Little Forks Outfitters. Since then, I have been looking forward to being involved with more community art projects and truly appreciate these opportunities to grow within the community as well as growing as an artist.
Connect: InstagramFacebook


Location 7: Poseyville & Ellsworth
Artist: Jazzmyn Benitez

Artist Bio/Statement: This modern-day misunderstood Dandelion should be celebrated through its ability to represent the differences in each of our stories & experiences. Our ability to grow each other help us to become a stronger community. With the rising sun and its setting horizon dandelions represent our ability to boldly rise above indifference and come together as we move forward into the future as we create the true meaning of community. The dandelion plant’s every part is useful –roots, leaves, flower. Its uses include dye for coloring, food, and medicine. Like the members of our community, we all have skills and talents that are needed and welcomed. Dandelion seeds can float up to 5 miles from its point of origin, a lot like our community can grow well past our city. Dandelions are one of the only plants that represent our celestial sky. The Golden petals representing our glorious sun, closing when the sun sets as if to sleep. The white puff circle representing our moon and the seed pods floating gently across the landscape like twinkling stars for us to wish upon.
Connect: Website –  Instagram – Email:




Location 8: Larkin & Ripley
Artist: Kristin Cronkright

Artist Bio/Statement: I’m Kristin Cronkright, a Midland native and natural born maker at heart. I love to pull inspiration from nature, which is why I chose to feature honey bees on my Outside The Box mural. Honey bees are amazing little creatures and incredibly social; they communicate well, love to dance, and are always helping each other out by working hard and supporting one another. They’re incredibly driven, identifying their purpose and knowing they have a big job to do in order to keep their colony thriving. I think we as a community could learn a lot from them by loving one another as we are, with the many roles we all play in making this space thrive, and by being kind no matter what.
Connect: InstagramFacebook





2022 Call to Artists:

The Public Arts Midland committee invites artists in Midland county to submit an application to design and paint one of eight city owned utility boxes in and around the downtown Midland area in July of 2022. These boxes, or 3D mini murals, range in size approximately 3’W x 5’H x 2’D to 6’W x 7.5’H x 2.25’D and are to be painted on all four sides.

Murals have always been powerful tools to educate and inform community members over a wide variety of topics. As Public Arts Midland’s vision statement notes, “We believe that art connects, heals, inspires, teaches, and speaks to us in myriad ways that build stronger and more vibrant communities.”  Public art gives our community a collective voice and a platform to express these values, while also bringing awareness to the beauty of our city’s physical and cultural landscape. These murals are to be family friendly and a captivating addition to the downtown scene and surrounding areas.

Each artist will receive an honorarium between $400 and $900, depending on which utility box they are chosen to work on. Additionally, artists will also receive a paint budget to coincide with the size of the designated box. Public Arts Midland will supply project specific paint and artists may choose their own colors. Full details on stipend and paint budget will be disclosed once the artists are selected and assigned specific utility boxes.

Artists will be selected based on the quality of artwork/artistic excellence, creativity, originality, and technical skill. The Public Arts Midland committee aims to select a dynamic artist or artist group whose work may encompass a broad range of art styles, while representing the diversity of our community.


  • Artists are responsible for the entire mural execution including the hiring and paying of assistants, if the artist so chooses, EXCEPT that the primer coat and top coat will be applied by the PAM Committee.
  • Artists are expected to complete the murals during the month of July.
  • Artists are expected to be mindful & considerate of the public and surrounding areas while working on the utility box project.
  • Artists under the age of 18 must have an adult sponsor, who will share responsibility for completion of the project.

To be considered, applicants must include the following:

  • Proposed design for utility box. See template for approximate proportions. Please save your file in this format: LastName_FirstName_Box22.jpg
  • Small portfolio (2-5 images) of past paint based artwork.
  • Artist statement: To include biography, website, and/or social media
  • Submit a preliminary list of colors needed to create your design. Please reference paint codes from Sherwin Williams. The paint required for this project is specialty, so we need to limit artists to 5-7 colors (outside of black and white, which will be provided). You can mix your own additional shades from those, and potentially share with other artists.
  • The subject line when applying must read Outside The Box 2022, emailed to


  • Monday, May 2, 2022: Application Opens
  • Sunday, June 5, 2022 at 11:59 P.M. (EST): Application Closes
  • Monday, June 6 – Friday, June 10, 2022: Committee Review
  • Monday, June 13, 2022: Artists Selection and Notification
  • Friday, July 1 – Sunday, July 31, 2022: Painting of the Murals


For more information on procedures and application submission, please email


Understand if selected, artists allow Public Arts Midland to document mural production process via photography and video. Additionally, artists must agree to actively participate in video interviews.

Understand that each mural location may have unique parameters to work within including location, size, materials, installation, etc. We ask artists to be adaptable, innovative, and flexible. Locations will be assigned to the selected artists.

Public Arts Midland reserves the right to reproduce designs, and share them in photos or video for future use.


  • 1 – Main & Townsend 60x26x72″
  • 2 – Main & Poseville 72x22x90″
  • 3 – Bay City & Rockwell 44x27x70″
  • 4 – Main & Ashman 60x26x70″
  • 5 – Waldo & Patrick 44x27x70″
  • 6 – Main & Rodd 44x26x57″
  • 7 – Poseyville & Ellsworth 27x44x70″
  • 8 – Larkin & Ripley 36x20x72″

Artists may choose to use the template below to design their submission if they so choose. If your design is selected proportions may need to be adjusted depending on which box you are assigned. Right click and save image on your computer, or click and hold the image to save to your camera roll on mobile devices.