Thursday, October 30, 2008

Still Working on Walls

Since I gave my time up to the mural project, I have been shamed into painting the dining room wall at home. The Woman stripped off the wallpaper and picked out the paint and said "Get to work". I was told if I could paint a mural I could surely do a wall, The only problem is the wall looked like swiss cheese, it had so many holes from the parade of painting that have hung there. So are evenings of patching and painting and faux finishing and finally trimming, the wall is finished and now The Woman wants to hang things on it - No Way - no new holes after I spent all that time patching.

So we went down to Lowes to get some type of hangers that don't use nails or screws - we bought some adhesive ones that are supposed to be easily removed and don't leave marks - don't waste your money they don't work and they removed a piece of paint. Guess I'll have to get some regular type with nails and just touch up the wall when she feels the need to move things.

But tonight I'm probably going to relax and watch a movie with my girlfriend.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Hurry Up and Wait

This last weekend was the mural at the Extreme Home Makeover house in Pekin. After lots of emails with the designer about what we needed to do, we were given our start time 12:00 Saturday. We showed up at the house met the designer for the first time and were ushered in to see the room for the first time, then told that because of construction delays we were pushed back to Sunday at 7:00.

The crew arrived again bright and early Sunday morning ready to knock out the mural and the rest of the room. ( once we arrived Saturday we were told that our job was slightly more than just the mural we had to give the whole room the "special " look) The only problem was that the electricians had not finished the elaborate light system that was in the room and again we had to wait.

Finally at 12:00 Sunday we were able to start the project, shortly after beginning we were told that our deadline to finish was 7:00 so the floor could be laid ( no pressure) we were off to the races. Thanks to great communication before we began and talented artists in the group we divided and conquered the project and were finished on time. Something that rarely happens in the whole process of the build we're told.

I'm still not at liberty to divulge the subject or details of the room, but the designer was pleased with the outcome , and it will be the focus of the reveal of that room to a special girl today. Yes the whole process is over today and the media hoopla will eventually subside. The show is set to air in December I believe , I'm sure that there will many TeVo's running and parties to attend. Right now I'm just glad my little part is over and I'm wondering how long it's going to take Lisa to get back in card playing mode, she's been sort of preoccupied the last month or so. Hopefully she will be able to rest the rest of this week.

Friday, October 24, 2008


As I sat a the drawing table last night , finishing up the sketches for the room, I started to wonder how Lisa is doing. Lisa Walker is my friend who has taken a leave of absence from her job, put her life on hold and is taking on the job of night supervisor of volunteers at the extreme house. Not only is she working twelve hour shifts for a week, she also has to do them all night. Even more worry some than that is who is taking care of Tom her husband? Is he getting fed? Well let's hope they are doing OK.

This whole drama is repeated hundreds of times throughout the community as people are donating their time and putting their life on hold to get this accomplished. Hardly any will get their name in lights or on camera, but they will leave with the satisfaction of doing something bigger than they could have done alone, and bettering a family's life in the process.

So when the cameras and the dust are gone they can look back and say "I had a hand in that" . The few hours that my artist friends put in on the mural will be small in comparison to the hours of labor put in the building of the house. Hey what can I say we're just lucky like that as I lay warm and snug in my bed each night.

Sorry Lisa

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Extreme Update

Well it is sort of official, we are painting a mural for the home being built in Pekin IL as part of the ABC series " Extreme Home Makeover ". Not sure if I can divulge too much information there seems to be a lot of secret stuff going on. I can tell you that it is a bedroom mural and was told that it had to look as real as possible. Sending more sketches tonight to some the designer that has contacted us so he can sell his idea to the executive director. It looks like we will be painting Saturday or Sunday and must be finished by Monday morning.

Hope we can get this done to the satisfaction of the staff at the event. The episode is due to air sometime in December. How do I get myself in these things?

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Head Cold

After the closet remodel I started to feel a little funny, and not in a good way. Around Wednesday I got a full blown head cold , and with a dome my size, that's a huge cold. Thanks to modern medicine I can at least function through the day, even though I'm a bit foggy. In the evenings I generally just crash and burn. It has not been pleasant but today I'm at least not taking any mind altering drugs so perhaps the worst is over.

The whole time I've been under the weather there has been fevered activity in the whole community as it seems that ABC's Extreme Home Makeover is coming to the area. Everyone that I know is not only talking about it but many are involved. One of my best friends are the night time supervisor ( a week of 12 hour evening shifts - she took a leave of absence from her day job to do it ), the company that I work for ( the day job) donated a huge amounts of fabric for the new draperies. Then the art world started in.

Amy Boetcher, a good art friend and big dreamer, contacted me about a mural that needed to painted in the house. I was very reluctant at first to get involved but The Woman convinced me that it was just a day and it would be cool to help out. So now I guess I'm on call next weekend to paint the mural. The whole process is very secretive and no one knows where this is at or when so you'll know when I know. I have sent sketches to the designer and met with some of the other artists that we have put together. If they want it done you may get to see it on TV.

Monday, October 13, 2008

The Ironing Board

I had a little thing this weekend at the nursery on Saturday, so that day was pretty much finished for getting anything done in the studio or at home.

Sunday started off as a lazy day but then the ironing board started us off on a whole new tangent. You see we had a fold down ironing board in our walk-in closet. I use the term walk-in loosely as it so packed with stuff we can barely fit in. The Woman decided that the ironing board was the cause of this and it needed to be removed. So I removed the ironing board and looked at the hanging purses and hats and the shoes that seem to multiplying on the floor.

I told The Woman that we needed to go to the local Lowes and see if they had any type of computer program that could help us design a better functioning space. Although they do this for kitchens they don't have this service for closets. They did however have storage units and even more important than that they were liquidating them.

So at 2:00 PM we drove off with all the stuff to change our cramped closet into a jewel of organization. The Woman and I could not believe our serendipitous luck as we purchased over $1000.00 of storage units for $250.00. By 8:00 we had everything back in the closet it was amazing everything, fall, winter, spring and summer clothes hanging all at one time. Sweater's, sweatshirts, and t-shirts all on their own shelves. Shoes in little shoe cubbies, hats and purses in their own little places. No storage containers tucked in corners it is truly a mind blowing experience.

As we were finishing up and vacuuming up the treads and lint off the floor that's when I notice the thing that started it all .... the ironing board ..... still has no home.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Finally Got To The Studio

Last evening I finally managed to get into the studio and straighten it up a bit. The Woman fixed dinner and then took one for the team and went solo to the Illinois Art League board meeting.

That left me at home to start a painting that I had been putting off. With the Cubs being a huge let down in the post season I started on a team that has broken the curse. Fenway Park is the new piece and hopefully it will be finished by the baseball show in early November. This one will be a little different from some of the others as I'm trying to paint it at dusk, with clouds rolling in. We'll see if I can get it done.

So I sat in the studio working, watching the Red Sox win - hey maybe I should have painting something Cubby - I don't even think that would have helped them.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Weekend with my girl friend

My intention was just to relax this weekend and try to recoup some of my energy that was expended the last month.

Well.....The Woman had a little different agenda.

Instead of lounging in my pajamas, I made the mistake of get dressed. The Woman decided that if I was dressed I might as well be working. She wanted a new floor laid in a bedroom downstairs. Lucky for me ( I'm not sure if it was lucky as I still had to install it ) we had the flooring in the garage that I had just recently had to clean, so I wasn't out any money just time.

After I finished we when to see some friends and watch the Cubs lose their final game ( I lament their lose because of the potential sales of prints evaporated with it)

Sunday we went a tour of some of the lofts on the Peoria Riverfront. It was interesting to see the art that was hanging in these converted warehouse buildings. The main thing that struck me was that the art was huge and the TVs were small. The Woman on the other hand was secretly making a list of things for me to do in our house. Since I have room in garage to work I think she is going to take advantage of it.

Friday, October 03, 2008

Friday - and my first weekend off!!!

This has been a whirlwind month with lots of activity, but this weekend I don't have to do a thing. It's the first weekend since Labor Day that I don't have to go set up or teach. I might just sleep in and wear pajamas all weekend.

Maybe after a good nights rest I'll go and sing Karaoke at my friends house till 4:00 AM - Probably will just hang out with my girl friend.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Took Another Day Off

Last night after returning home from work I found this lovely lady reclining watching a movie. Manhattan, I've always loved Woody Allen movies, so I took a break and reclined with her. Then she informed me that I was on dinner.... that's not the sweet nothings that a guy wants to hear.....women do the cooking ... men bring home the food.

So I got up and started dinner. After I served up the meal.....Thai peanut chicken / with chicken strips for the finicky eater Kaleb, I was informed that the girls were going for a walk and that I should clean up my mess in the kitchen. What !! Guys don't have to clean up after cooking ........women clean up .......... men retire to the lounge.

So after I cleaned the kitchen, I started watching the Cub game. A very disappointing start to the series. Needless to say I never got to the studio. Oh well there is always tonight.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Garage Duty

Any one driving by my house last night probably saw the flames from the purging of past projects and scrap wood in the fire pit. Like the remains of fallen hero's on their way to Valhalla, all that's left are the ashy remnants.

The garage duty, although not finished, is probably over for a few days. The counters are clear and tools are in boxes( although not organized), you can at least walk in and find something. You don't have to play "eye spy with my little eye - something....)

Tonight I will go inside and start to organize the studio, mainly because the Cubs are on and I can watch as I clean. I'll save finishing the garage for an off day.

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