Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Crumbling Wall Mural

I've been working on one of my favorite paint effects - The Crumbling Wall.

I first tried out this effect about 15 years ago in my old office. At the time I was not particularly proficient in effects like stone blocking, marbling and rag-rolling so my decision to paint a derelict wall was almost like a reaction against those type of effects.

Marbling has an elegant and luxurious feel whereas a crumbling plaster effect looks like a wall in bad repair. I enjoyed this stark contrast - it's my rebellious paint effect and over time it has become my signature piece.

Over the years I have painted this effect many times in my customer's homes and also in a few Italian restaurants where the effect unselfishly lends itself to painted Mediterranean views and the odd trompe l'oeil glass of wine. It also works especially well in sun-baked conservatories.

I have also featured the effect in my first book, 'Trompe L'Oeil Interiors', as a step-by-step project. Since I wrote the book nearly seven years ago I have slightly evolved the way I paint it - to be honest every time I paint it I do something slightly different.

It is also quite a relaxing effect to paint as it requires minimal planning - I just start with a basic idea of where I want the exposed brickwork to be and then just sketch it out loosely with a paint brush and build it up from there. This ensures that the effect is kept as natural as possible - there is a danger that too much planning will reflect in the finished piece looking too contrived.

My main reason for painting this project will be revealed soon - it is something I have been meaning to try out for some time.

Watch this space - all will be revealed soon.

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