OAKLAND, Calif. (KRON) — If you see a whimsical window painting of Santa Claus and his reindeer pop up around the San Francisco Bay Area, you may be looking at the handiwork of the Taylor brothers.
Tom Taylor, 68, and Tim Taylor, 60, hand-painted thousands of windows with custom murals over the past 40 years to spread smiles and cheer. The brothers usually begin painting in the morning and continue working until midnight.
The two most common comments they get from onlookers are, “I always wondered who did that,” and, “That’s practically a lost art.”
The Taylor brothers said they are saddened that the art of holiday window painting seems to be quietly fading away.
Tom Taylor said, “We used to know all of the other painters in the area. We were like a little sub culture often running into one another in the dark, cold, early AM winter hours. Now they just don’t seem to be around anymore.”
“While there is an impressive aspect of today’s technology, a digital print absolutely lacks the heart of something handcrafted,” Tim Taylor said.
Starting around Halloween, the brothers paint windows six days a week.
Tim Taylor said, “The bulk of our window painting season is November 1 through December 10. It’s a very festive way to mingle with the public at this time of year. It feels nice to be able to make people smile and on occasion let some enthusiastic child passing by paint their own snowflake as part of our windows.”
He added, “I do hope some in the rising generation will pick up the baton and keep this art alive. We’re not getting younger and don’t know how many years of this we have left in us.”
Here are some locations where you can see the Taylor brothers’ window artwork this holiday:
- The Kaiser Permanente campuses in Antioch, Walnut Cree, and Dublin
- Mueller Veterinary Hospital in Walnut Creek
- A large vacant building adjacent to Broadway Pet Hospital in Oakland
- Mercedes Benz of Oakland
- Pini Ace Hardware in Novato
- Meadow Plaza Shopping Center in Pleasanton
- City Toyota in Daly City
- Local 261 in San Francisco and San Mateo
- Muir Station in Martinez
- Ascona Pizza in Blackhawk
- Clayton Valley Shopping Center
- Dr. Joyce Optometry in Benicia and Suisun