Man Forced To Hide His Boat Behind A Fence Has Super Realistic Boat Painted On The Fence

Screenshot: Hanif Panni/ YouTube (<a class="link " href="" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Fair Use;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas">Fair Use</a>)
Screenshot: Hanif Panni/ YouTube (Fair Use)

City and housing community municipal codes seem to target people who like working on their vehicles or parking them in plain sight, but one Seaside,California man found a creative way to flip a figurative bird to these frivolous codes. Etienne Constable received a notice from the city requesting he comply with a municipal code restricting parking for non-passenger vehicles, and he had to store his boat behind a 6-foot-high fence so it wouldn’t be visible from the street. Constable found a creative way to comply while still conveying distaste by having a neighbor and muralist paint his new fence to appear invisible.

Constable has lived in Seaside for 29 years. He’s parked his current boat in his driveway for four years, and a previous boat for many years prior to suddenly receiving this code compliance notice. Constable was forced to pave his driveway in order to install the fence that the city of Seaside required he store his boat behind, so the endeavor was more labor intensive than just moving the boat behind a pre-existing fence. The Los Angeles Times reported,

He [Constable] said he was surprised and unaware of the city code about non-passenger vehicles.

“We’ve been here for a long time,” Constable said, “and nobody had ever said anything before.”

Last year, the city hired a community enhancement staffer to identify code enforcement violations throughout the city that needed to be remedied, said Nick Borges, acting city manager and Seaside police chief.

If the boat wasn’t concealed, the notice stated noncompliance was punishable by a first offense of a $100 fee, according to Constable.”


Feedback from neighbors and social media users has been overwhelmingly positive and supportive of Constable’s artistic boat storage solution, with other neighbors reportedly asking for similar murals on their fences. The artist behind the lifelike masterpiece is Constable’s next-door neighbor Hanif Panni, a multi-medium artist. Initially, Panni and Constable were tossing around ideas of what to paint on the fence when the boat mural was mentioned as a joke, but it ended up becoming a reality.

Borges isn’t offended by the mural, saying the creative response to the city’s municipal code helped create a better relationship among neighbors.

“It does help cities like us get better” and identify whether some city codes should be enforced a certain way, he said.”

This kind of respectful disobedience brings me a lot of joy. I have a tough time respecting illogical and inconsequential rules, so I’m glad to see that Constable and Panni came together to make a statement about their community’s frivolous rules through the power of art.

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