Ornamental Plaster Sculpting, Mural Painting, Faux Finishing, and Imaginative Interior Design.

Ornamental Plaster Sculpting, Mural Painting, Faux Finishing, and Imaginative Interior Design.
CLICK ON THE RABBIT ( yes, those are cabinets) TO SEE MY PORTFOLIO, AND LEARN MORE ABOUT MY SERVICES...theartofthehome.com

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Relax and play and see what happens...

Once upon a time, many months ago, my friend Darla Farmer, who is on the board of directors at a place called Prairie Oaks Institute, got to talking to Carol Orr, the local high school art teacher, about painting the staircase at the farmhouse out there, and somehow, though the particulars are lost in the fog of time, I got roped in to lead a team of volunteers.  However, upon seeing the space, I wasn't sure how many volunteers we could squeeze in before it became a clowns-in-a-Volkswagen sort of a thing, and when no volunteers appeared to coordinate it anyway, I said I would just paint it myself. 

Jake volunteered to help, and brought his friend Savanna along.  In such a small space, it meant that except the ladder work over the staircase, there really wasn't much room for me to do anything.  Dang. 
 About the time I calendared the job though, with a fund raiser scheduled for this weekend, volunteers were being rounded up for many projects, and a future architect named Jake was roped in to help me. He arrived on time, with help. Having just gotten there myself, I wasn't ready to lead a crew quite yet, in fact, I hadn't been expecting a crew, and gulp, the crew was sixteen years old, which you all know by now, pretty well terrifies me. I don't have any of these creatures, and my Artgirls have all been little and mostly come one at a time, and sit still. I know, just relax and play, and see what happens. Easy for you to say.

We used the blues from three different rooms in the house, plus white, to do a Woolie blend.  The finish was chosen to play down the rough old plaster, since having it skim coated wasn't in the budget at this time.
I started off spectacularly badly, by asking if they were a couple or just friends. This created whimpering giggles, mumbles, silence, and more giggles. Once upon a time, a very longer time ago, I was sixteen, but I can't remember it clearly enough to know what this response means. We were there for five hours painting, but nobody ever explained. However, nobody was all kissy-face either, so apparently it was some form of "No, not a couple...but...?" Talk about an experience that showed just how absolutely I have become my mother. (Love you Mama, but you are so special, you really should be one of a kind. Hmm... I'm diggin' myself in deep here, aren't I?)

Fueled by doughnuts left for the volunteers, these two made pretty quick work of the staircase.
Well, Mama, it may put me back in your good graces to explain that I was volunteering for an organization called Prairie Oaks Institute, which is all about teaching organic growing and sustainable agriculture, and a bunch of other cool nature-related stuff. I'm going to just give out the link, here, since I am discovering I have started showing a certain parent's ability to somewhat mangle the facts. (I just fell right back outa her good graces, huh?) Click here: Prairieoaksinstitute.org.

Ever get the funny feeling you're being watched?  You never know who's hiding behind the paint!  This is the kind of stuff that happened when my back was turned, this and a really big glob of paint in my hair...Savanna, I thought you said it was "a little bit".  Sheesh.  Never work below enthusiastic teenagers on a sugar high.
We had a fun time, but make no mistake, these two worked hard. Neither plans to make a career of painting (while Jake is studying to be an architect, Savanna will be attending art school), but both intend to paint rooms at home in the near future, so hopefully I gave them useful information.

I know I gave them a little taste of the freedom of becoming an artist, because one of the best things about this particular paint technique, is how it breaks all the rules one learns in school about painting. Not only did we gleefully color on the walls, we dipped our brushes in all the colors without rinsing between them, and we dripped like rusty gutters in a downpour. We splashed it all on the wall, and then we smooshed it around to see what it would do, which was never completely predictable. There will be plenty of controlled, educational lessons on the way to their creative careers, but I hope they will never forget to sometimes just relax and play and see what happens. Worked for me yesterday, once again. Thanks you two, for a really fine day.

You can check out my portfolio on my website at theartofthehome.com (Jake likes the Spidey room), and you can leave comments below or email me at dawnmariedelara@gmail.com.  Any really weird comments you read may be attributed to Savanna, who threatened to do her best spammer impersonations.


Darla said...

Nice work team! Feels like you are walking into the swirling skies. Much appreciated!

Anonymous said...

I also great at paint... check out my walls.