Step 1: Step 1: Acquire Materials
1 Gallon Rust-Oleum Safety Blue Pro Enamel(or latex equivalent for parking lots)--$40. You likely will not find this color at national retail outlets . I found it at a local retail shop. You can order it through national retail chains, but it takes time and extra $ for shipping. It is also possible to order 6-pack cans of spray paint, but this paint does not have a long life and tends to show anything painted under it. However, it does dry much more quickly.
1 Can White Striping Paint--$10. These are readily available at both national retail and local shops. DO NOT GET "MARKING" PAINT.
1 Piece of Plywood, at least 32" x 48"--$10. I used some old 3/4" laying about. I also purchased some "Hardboard" or masonite just for kicks.
1 Print-out, at least 32" x 32" on an "engineering" printer--$10. Your local copy shop or any national retailer (Kinkos, Staples, etc.) will have the engineer printers. I asked for a 36" x 48" and it came out perfect! The image is downloadable here: http://www.accessibleicon.org/uploads/1/3/8/3/13834741/accessibility20icon_final.pdf
Pieces of scrap plywood or cardboard. This is to protect the surrounding areas from overspray. Note that newspaper usually just blows away.
Painter's Tape. This gives the blue background straight edges. Try to get the cheapest tape you can. I usually go for the 2" stuff because my little helpers get sloppy sometimes.
Razor blades/Xacto knife/Scissors: for cutting out the paper stencil
Jigsaw: for cutting out the wood stencil.
Drill with 1/2 bit: for cutting out the wood stencil.
Paint Roller preferably with handle: for the blue background
Roller Cover preferably 1/2 nap: for the blue background
Safety Cone: to protect your job until it fully dries.
Drop Cloth: Don't leave a mess
Garbage Bags: Don't leave a mess
Step 2: Step 2: the Paper Stencil
Step 3: Step 3: Prepare Your Wood Stencil
Step 4: Step 4: Cutting Wood Stencil
Do not be a perfectionist about your cut. I try to follow the lines closely, going fast on the straight parts and slowly around the corners. If I find myself getting off the line, I just slowly move readjust. I do not stop and reset, as this would leave an eccentricity. Keep it smooth. Keep it cool. I let my son cut a bunch of the cuts as well…he did great!
Notice too that there will be weak parts to your wood stencil if, like me, the size of your plywood/hardwood is tight. Try to use a piece of wood that gives you lots of negative space.
Step 5: Step 5: Painting the Blue Background
Begin by sweeping the area, as any dust will just ruin your work. Then, using painter's tape, edge your background by stretching the tape with one full piece. This makes cleanup easy and provides a straight line.
I then bring out my materials and put them on a kind of drop cloth (I use a garbage bag even!) Then, I just pour the safety blue paint directly onto the pavement inside the square. (I used a paint tray, because my little helpers just insisted on it for some reason.) I first move it around the edges and then fill in the middle (or I let my helpers fill in the middle…) I use up about 1/5 of a gallon per spot; more if the pavement is old.
When complete but still wet, I pull off the tape and throw it in a garbage bag. I then put a cone in front and go on to other spots or skateboard in parking lot for about an hour until it dries.
Step 6: Step 6: Painting the Accessible Icon
First center the stencil on the (now dry) blue background. Then, use scrap boards/cardboard along the edges for overspray. I first paint the areas of the stencil that are sensitive; I often hold down the armpit and leg-pit areas when spraying the edges. Then, I hit all of the edges. You can just hand over the paint to your helpers to finish the rest. It is fun to watch how excited they get. The paint dries very quickly, so you can usually lift the stencil immediately and witness the glory!