Friday, December 29, 2006

big painting

Still working on the new big painting. I hope to have it mostly done by the end of the weekend.

Been doing a lot of ceiling work the past 3 weeks. Oh my aching neck.

Here's how far I have gotten on the canvas piece.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Big Canvas Painting

I have started on another big canvas piece. It is going to be 8 canvases, each one is 32 inches square. I have the background done on the top 6 canvases. Because of height considerations I can only work on 3 up at a time.

After I sketch out the image in pencil I use a liquid frisket and paint that on all the spaces that I don't want the background color to get on. Then I paint in the background and peel the frisket off.

What you see is the white canvas of the image I will now paint in.

Saturday, December 9, 2006

front doors

These front doors just needed a little touch to make them come alive. They were finished off with just a clear urethane and needed something to give them a little character. The handles are an anitque bronze so we aged the wood.

To do this I used black oil paint and applied so it that the paint would be in the crevices around the molding as you can see. Then I carefully applied the black over the entire door and wiped it off in a way to leave some and 'age' all the surfaces.



Thursday, November 23, 2006

rectangle pattern

I have been working in a condo unit on the 15th floor. The unit is in downtown Tampa and over looks the Hillsbough river.

I have done quite a bit of work there. I applied a three color glaze on all the walls in the dining area, kitchen and living room area. I painted the two columns in the foyer area a slightly distressed silver. Painted some niches in the dining area and painted the cabinets in the masterbath to match the bedroom furniture.

But the realllllllllly nice i did was under the bar and the backsplash.
check out the photos. It has great overlapping and transparent rectangles painted with 5 different colors and silver metallic then an over glaze of gold veil shimmer. The subtleties of the gold veil and metallics don't photograph well but you get the idea.

This is a really high teck look in the condo from the silver columns to the fantastic flooring - which unfortunately you can't see well from these photos.



Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Painting A Pirate Float

Here are some pictures of the pirate float I have been working on yesterday and today. I was approached by a client that I had done some work for at his home and business and asked if I could help them with their priate float. Its some sort of benefit thing but they have it in the Gasperilla parade every year in Tampa which according to police estimates draws about 500,000 people, so its a big deal.

Anyway the float is nothing more than a flat bed trailer about 40 feet long with a structure on the back and it had a raty looking tiki bar on the front. I told them to get rid of the tiki bar and I designed a treasure chest to put there instead. they also had the thing painted all seafoam green and pink and other colors that have nothing to do with priates.

they are going to put some benches down the middle but the whole thing is they get about 12 to 15 people on it and drink a lot of beer and toss out beads and plastic coins.

the first picture is the front of the float. I designed this to look like a treasure chest and they did a good job of building it. I am painting the wood a reddish brown and the trim will be a metallic gold. The idea is to stand in the treasure chest and throw out beads and coins, etc.



the next picture is the back of the float. This structure was already existing and they wanted to keep it and asked me if I had any ideas for it. So I thought it would make a good jail. It was painted some aweful color I so I painted it to look like plaster that had broken away revealing stone in places. there is a window on each side and they are going to put bars there. you can see how I painted the sides of the flatbed to look like wood planks. I still have about another 2 days on it before my part is done.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Garage Doors On The Beach

Well, I finished up the garage doors and outside walls of the new garage addition today. I put a good exterior clear coat over everything to ensure the longest lasting results I could.

The first photo is after I had primed the garage walls and primed and started the first coats of the door.



As you can see I first paint a pumpkin color over the door. This gives the final product a warm wood glow. Then I paint on the first brown color.

After that I paint on the second brown color which is nothing more than adding black to the first brown.



After the garage door was complete I painted the outside garage walls to match the walls of the home.



The last picture shows a close up of the door. Notice the nice warm glow of the wood.

Friday, September 8, 2006

Entry Cabinet niche

As you go into the house from the garage these canbinets were installed in the niche there.
When they were installed I first primed them then put several coats of a deep wine color as a base. Then I took black and rubbed it into the creases and crevices. The cabinets are not quite as dark as the first photo but certainly darker than the other two. Its just that with the flash on it changes the color somewhat.



I love creating this hand rubbed look for the cabinets, it just seems to create a really rich look. Check out those legs in the last photo.


Wednesday, September 6, 2006

Talk about distressed


This bathroom vanity is really distressed looking. The bathroom was remolded and mostly gutted and starting over. The black granite top is new and so is the small tile work over it. It was decided to keep the framework of the cabinet and distress it. Distress it a lot.

The first thing I had to do was to prime the cabinet and all the drawers and doors. Then I painted it a dark wood grain and put some crackle finish over that. On the crackle I painted an off white let that dry so you could see some of the dark grain show thru. Then I went over the entire piece with a black-brown distressing it to the max. It looks like it was drug out of room that had been fire damaged. Which is not a bad look as long everything else is new and crisp.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Wall Panels

Cathy has created a fabulous array of hallway panels in this home. The first picture I want to show you is a shot looking down the hallway where the panels are (12 foot ceilings). There are 8 panels on each side of the door which is in the center and then there is a panel above the door.



You can see seven panels here below. On the other side of the door the panels are a mirror image of what you see here.



A closer look at the work. How perfect can you get! Look at the wonderful corner work going on. The wood molding was put on by a carpenter and Cathy painted it also.



The panel above the door and next to it.

Wednesday, August 2, 2006

Art Installation

Cathy has created a wonderful piece of artwork for an outside courtyard area at a local hospital. This area is a space created for cancer patients. I constructed the six panels and Cathy painted the image on them. Each panel is 32 inches square.



Cathy also painted a stone border to two planter areas in the courtyard. The first picture is the blank concrete canvas she had to work with.

The next two photos show the stone borders.



The last photo shows a arched panel 54 inches wide that she painted and we install above the doorway that leads outside of the courtyard area. The wood 'plank' below the painted arched piece is painted directly on the block wall.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Pirate Ship Float

I was asked to design a pirate ship float, the float will be part of various parades in the Tampa Bay area most notably the Gasperilla Day parade in February of each year. This parade typically draws 500,000 people.

These are the preliminary sketches that have to based on an existing float platform.

first one is overall float.


I am not sure what the height requirements or restrictions that you will have but basically a large treasure chest in the front, mast in the middle and stern of ship in... well the stern.

Front picture.


So in the front the treasure chest is a walk in piece. The four sides are constructed to look like a treasure chest and you can stand inside it and throw out beads or whatever. There would be a walk thru doorway space ('passage way' in navel jargon) to go in and out of the chest.

This could be a really nice piece if you take the time and build it right and paint it up with some metallic paint and all. I would imagine the construction company could find some large metal pieces to simulate latches, etc.

Help by the participating members to get accessories to simulate treasure and that draped over the lid and leaning up against it.

the sides of the float could be wood or that hardiboard and nailed on to simulate the side of a ship with areas for the cannons.

The mast in the center of the ship is surrounded at the base with powder kegs. I was thinking that this would provide a seating area for a rest.

Then you could make a sail and install it so it covered the front part of the ship to provide sun shade and rain protection. It attaches to a mast going out the front of the ship.

Now this is reallllllllllllllllllly cool. On the posts that line the perimeter of the float you could get life size human skulls plastic models and mount them on the top of each post. You could also get femur bones and cross them below the skulls.

The stern of the ship could like the stern of a ship.



I think it needs to be curved out like the sketch. Again I don't know the height restrictions but it would be cool to have a platform on top to stand and throw beads also.

What will make the float outstanding is the accessories you use on it.
lost of rope rigging and poles with multi colored flags, etc. Will add tons of 'look' with not much cost.

anyway this is my initial thoughts and I will do more detailed sketches of the individual aspects if asked. (Depending on budget)

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Aged Columns

I started this project on Monday. The deal is to paint 4 stone columns so they match in color the marble around the fireplace (not shown in picture) and to make them look very old. In the picture the two columns furthest away have been completed.



The pedestals that the columns sit on have been changed from what they were. They originally were sitting on wood and the wood pedestal was actually smaller than the base of the column so it looked kinda funny. Now as you can see the pedestals have been built out some and faced with marble and some sculpted decorative type tile. (Which I have to paint to match the columns)

Anyway, I assumed the columns were painted in oil as the wood base seemed to be and they were both a satin white. (Painting stone columns white is not a good idea. It just does not do the columns any justice at all.) So the first thing i did was to prime them with a product by Zinsser called 'Cover Stain', its an oil based primer. Its an excellent primer and I use it on a regular basis, especially when I am not sure what it is I am priming over. I have found that this primer is the only one I can count on to adhere to oil paint. Yes, I know, the Bin 123 and other waterbased primers will say they adhere well to oil paint but in my experience they do not.

Even though the Cover Stain is oil based it dries as fast as an acrylic primer and once it cures it ain't coming off.

So after I primed I based coated with a color that I thought would give me the base coat color of the marble I was trying to match. Priming and base coating was the first day.

The next day I started on the first column. Now sometimes my plan does not go as planed. I tried for almost 3 hours to get the column to look the way I wanted it to but could not. So I gave up and base coated over what I did to get it back to a starting point and moved to another column. I used a different technique and that worked great so at that point I was off and running. I was able to get 2 columns completed the second day and today finished up the last two and sealed them.

I use a product called, 'Diamond Elite' it is made by Varathane and is a clear waterbased polyurethane made for floors but I use it on walls and cabinetry all the time.

So here is the aged look above. To get it I used a dark warm gray and a medium to dark toned brown mixed to gether. I do not mix up a batch of the color and then paint with it. What I do is take my brush and dip it in one can and wipe that off in the paint tray, then dip the brush in the other can and mix the two colors together in the paint try.

I mix the colors like that so that each time I mix up a small amount it has a little different mixture of each color. that way the hue and shade of the color varies slightly around the column. It makes it more interesting to do it that way.

Once I mixed up a small amount of paint I get my brush very wet with water. I need to have the paint extremely runny because I want to push it into all the pock marks in the column so with the brush very wet and spread the paint on the column pushing it into the pock marks. Then I immediately take a cotton rag and wipe off almost all the paint on the surface of the column leaving the pock marks filled. If you look at the photo above you can see the pock marks and how the dark paint filled them.

I am working in areas of about 15-18 inches by 20 inches and sometimes larger. I get the whole column done like this and let it dry. then I take an off white and dry brush it over the column and leave the muted veining look you see. then I take a brush with the darker paint and go into all the seams at the top and bottom of the column. Then once dry I seal it.

They look very much like they have stood there for hundreds of years.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Paint A Horizontal Stripe Pattern In Room

I finished the stripe pattern I have been working on. It came out really nice and the client loved it.

In order to do this project there was quite a bit of prep work. The walls that have the stripes on them had wallpaper. The clients took the wallpaper off themselves. There were quite a bit of holes and rips and other gouges in the wall that first had to be repaired.

Typically when one hires a professional to take down wallpaper the person will strip the wall and repair any damage then prime the wall so it is ready to go.

So that was not done in this case so I had to do that myself. The first thing I do in these cases is to sand down the entire wall with my 'mouse' hand held sander. I clean up the edges of all the tears and holes. Then I fill the holes with M and H Ready patch. The smaller holes, tears and gouges I can fill with joint compound.

The difference is joint compound is softer than the ready patch and not good for larger holes as it will crack.

So I go over the entire wall area and let that dry for a day. Then I re-sand the entire wall hoping I got all the holes. Of course with this wall and so many places I missed a few so I get those. When all is dry I sand again then prime. After you prime with a good primer there will be some spots that might need some more attention so I take care of that. Then I prime again. Lots of work just to get to the place where you can start putting paint on the wall.

So lets look at the wall again.



I first painted the entire wall with one coat of the tan color. I did this for a couple of reasons. The first is I wanted to get some color on the wall. I was also concerned about seeing an edge mark with painting the stripes. Each layer of paint when dried will have a thickness to it. So if you paint two layers of paint then try to butt up against that with two other layers there is a good chance you will see a line there. So hoping to minimize that effect I opted to paint the wall one of the three colors first. I also wanted to do the job in the least of amount of time possible. When you are doing stripes to get the edge line as clean as possible you need to use tape. I use the blue 'safe release' tape and would not reccomend using anything else. The regular blue painters tape will lift paint off the wall.

So first I paint the wall one coat of tan color. Then I taped off the two off white stripes and painted them in with two coats. I then taped off the center tan stripe and gave it a second coat. (I only needed to paint one coat on this stripe after I taped it off because I had already painted the entire wall this color.)

So now I have three stripes done, the two off white and the center tan one. I did it this way because I have to wait over night for the paint to dry before I can tape off the other stripes. Even using the safe release I give paint an over night dry before taping on to it.

Now the next day I taped off the gray stripes and the top and bottom tan stripes and paint them in. Here you can see the taping and painting of the gray stripes.


In order to paint in the gray stripes I needed to tape on the off white stripes so that is why they needed to dry over night.

In order to paint in stripes you need to be able to mark off the edges of the stripes in a level straight line. In order to do that I use a laser level.

Mine is a 'David White' laser level and costs about $150.00. It comes with an eight foot pole you can attach the laser to. With that you can slide the laser up and down and clamp it at any height thereby you can set it precisely where you want it on the wall. It has a horizontal line and a vertical or both at one time. It has a self leveling feature which is invaluable. It levels itself on the wall so you don't need a level to to that.

Once I determine the width of the stripes I mark off the measurements on the wall. Then with the laser level you just line up the red line of the laser light on each mark and it gives you a level horizontal line across the wall. You don't need to pencil off this line, I just leave the light on and tape right to it. Its really a nice tool to use.

After the first stripes are done you don't need the laser level anymore.

For the gray stripes and the upper and lower tan stripes I simply tape along the edge of the off white stripes over lapping less than a 1/16th of an inch.

I had previously painted the crown molding a brushed nickel look with metallic paint. You really can't tell from the picture so you will have to trust me on that. The procedure on that was to paint the crown first in a dark gray satin paint. Then I mixed some metallic silver with some metallic bronze to darken it some and brushed it over the dark gray paint.

Friday, June 30, 2006

metallic signage

I had a little one day job yesterday painting two signs, one on the front and one on back of a building.

Actually the entire job took longer than one day. I first had to lay it out on paper then transfer it to the walls. That was about a half day's work. Then it took a day to paint it on.

In the first picture you see how I approached the project. After laying it out on the wall I painted the first layer of the logo with a dark brown coat. The lettering is solid black and I was happy it only took two coats to get solid. Sometimes it takes three.



I then painted over the dark brown with an antique bronze metallic paint. Then I made the individual tiles seem 3-d by painting the edges black. To do this you have to have a direction from which the light would come. So the actual light fixture on the building there I shadowed in the left and bottom sides of each tile. Notice how much of a difference it makes from the first picture to the second. I repeated this exactly on the front of the building.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Update Kitchen Cabinets To A More Modern Look

The current project is a pretty big kitchen cabinet makeover. Lots of doors and drawers to paint. I spent all week doing one side of the kitchen and this week I will do the other side. Check out the picture.



The cabinets are 20 years old and they structuraly are in perfect condition. That's because they are made from solid mable wood. These are probably the best built cabinets I have ever worked on. Even the sides of the drawers and the bottom and back are a solid 1/2 inch thick mable wood. You just don't see that so much.

The challege is after 20 years is the finish is in pretty bad shape. As you look at the photo the door on the right is what they look like and the door on the left is how I am faux painting them to look. The whitewash or pickled look was popluar 20 years ago but basically nobody uses it today. Along with me faux painting the cabinets a new floor was installed of travertine marble, the backsplash is now tumbled marble and instead of tile counter top there is a granite counter top and new lighting. So a complete make over. I am painting the cabinets to look like a hand rubbed Tuscany look with a color that picks up some the color in the granite counter top.

lots of work on this one. I had to throughly clean the cabinetry with denatured alachol and mineral spirits. I also ended up sanding quite a bit as that was the only way to get it all clean. However, what happens then is you end up sanding down thru the whitewash finish to the raw mable wood in areas. so to counter act that I have to apply a whitewash in those areas to get it back otherwise when I apply the tuscany hand rubbed finish it will not look right at all.

then of course I put 2 coats of a clear coat finish on each surface. I started using a product called diamond elite varathane for this and I absolutely love it. It is easy to work with and has a great 'hand' to it. When I say it has a great 'hand' I mean it feels soooooooooo nice to run your hand over it.

Wednesday, May 3, 2006

Give Furniture An Aged Look

Well I finished the buffet today by sealing the work I had done in the last two days. the doors are back on in the photo but the drawers are not in yet. I asked the client to wait until tomorrow to give the sealer time to dry before putting them back in.



Since then I have been working on three estimates and getting ready for starting a new job tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Paint A Stripe Pattern In Bathroom

I was able to finish the stripe pattern today. Take a look at the difference between the photographs from yesterday and today.



Below is a better photograph of the bathroom cabinetry I painted, taking it from solid white to a deep rich wood grain.

Friday, March 31, 2006

Two Large Wall Murals

I hit a big home run with the big original canvas painting. It really looks great on the wall. The original intention was to hang each canvas 3 inches apart but after we hung a few we decided it was that 3 inches was too far and closed the gap some.

So the first thing I did was to line up the bottom row and hang them. Then I worked up the wall. After all the canvases were hung I taped off around them then took them down and painted in the big square an antique bronze metallic paint. In the photo below it looks almost black between the paintings but in person it is a dark metallic and looks fantastic.



I also did another original painting in the same home a few months ago in the family room. This one I painted directly on the wall. Check it out.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Finished the front of the big painting

I was able to finish the front of the big canvas painting today. It is big and bold. At this point it is 16 seperate canvases held together, each canvas is 24 inches by 24 inches. Now I can seperate them and paint the edges. When installed the canvaes will hang about 3 inches apart inbetween the canvases the wall will be painted an antique metallic bronze.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Almost Finished

Well I thought I had a good chance to finish the canvas piece today but I came up about 2 hours short. I just got to burned out on it to finish. Plus I had a few other things I needed to do to get ready for tomorrow.

I worked on doing a sample for a kitchen cabinet project I am working on.

Here's the painting so far. I always work from the background to the foreground. So its basically all done except for a few pedals. Once the front is finished I have to break it apart into the 16 seperate canvases and paint the edges. Then install the piece.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Big Painting

The big canvas is coming along pretty good. Check it out, I've been working on it all day.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Jerusalem Stone

I am pretty lucky because I get to do all kinds of things. I recently painted the front of a Jewish synagogue to look like Jerusalem Stone. As explained to me Jerusalem Stone is the name of the stone used to build the ancient city of Jerusalem and you can still it everywhere in the city today. Here is a current picture of a building in Jerusalem with Jerusalem Stone.

The front of the building I worked on had already been made to look like large stones. But the color of them was not at all the color required to look like the Jerusalem Stone. Here's a picture of the front after I had faux painted half of the wall.



You can see how dark they were before I got there. I had to use an extension ladder to reach the top as it was 24 feet high at the highest point. The columns on either side of the door and at the ends of the building were also painted to look like stone.


The color was perfect for what they wanted. A few close-ups below.