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January 17, 2022
View: 224


You would think that Victor Arnautoff, the artistic director of the extensive murals at Coit Tower in nearby San Francisco and a protégé of Diego Rivera would get some respect. But even an important oil on canvas (on wall) mural commission by the U.S. Treasury Section of Fine Arts for downtown post office in Richmond, CA painted by Arnautoff in April 1941 was unceremoniously ripped off the wall.

Records show that during a remodel of the post office lobby, the 6′ 6″ X 13’4″ historical WPA mural of “Richmond Industrial City” depicting prominent people and places in Richmond… was not considered, at the time, so historically important… and Arnautoff was a prominent figure in New Deal art projects, a national federal program!

Apparently it languished, undetected in the building’s basement for almost half a century. Then, in 2014, the staff at the Richmond Museum of History and Culture learned from longtime member Fran Cappelletti that a mural had once graced the post office lobby. Executive Director, Melinda McCrary took charge in the hunt for this important large painting that had been “lost.” Her search lead her to the janitor for the post office and they found a huge triangular crate in an unlit room, the label clearly identifying it as the missing mural. This was exciting!!

Though valued by the knowledgeable museum staff, getting the USPS authorities to take action was a different matter. Even flooding in the basement had to be dealt with! When the crate was finally opened, there was a collective sigh of relief when it was realized that even though there was a water stain on the outside of the crate, the mural roll appeared unaffected.

No Controversy About This Once Missing Arnautoff Mural
While recent controversy storms around a mural at a San Francisco medical center about whether to save valuable, historical murals from the same time period as this Arnautoff mural, there is no question at the Richmond Museum of History and Culture that the City’s heritage is documented and it is a legacy of valuable public art. The active historical museum hasn’t adopted the lazy tin-cup-in-hand begging techniques of fundraising but, thinking outside of the box, has implemented a vision of community participation that has been fun and educational.

On Tuesdays, October 20th and Nov. 10th, Scott M. Haskins, the art conservator chosen for the restoration of the mural, in collaboration with the Richmond Museum will be presenting a Zoom webinar to show, not only, the community the interesting aspects of this history and restoration but also give a super interesting educational presentation on what attendees can do on their own to “save their stuff,” or preserve collectibles, heirlooms and family heritage at home or the office. Mr. Haskins is a world renown author of several books on this subject and makes it a lot of fun.

“This is a compelling work that captures the diversity of Richmond, a blue collar community,” says Melinda McCrary, the Museum’s Executive Director. “A wide range of occupations, ethnicities and scenery demonstrate what life was like in those days. Richmond was a working-class American community.” It’s a celebration of life that was especially created for this community.

When Arnautoff, of Russian origin, painted the mural, he was one of the most prominent and influential members of San Francisco’s art community. Between 1932 and 1942, he completed 11public murals, the best known of which is City Life (1934) at Coit Tower in San Francisco. The Richmond Post Office mural was Arnautoff’s last mural of this size and the first time since Coit Tower that he chose to depict a mix of city people going about their daily tasks. His mural presents life in Richmond as of 1941-when America was on the brink of WWII.

Restoring an Art Treasure: Richmond Industrial City Mural

The eye-catching WPA mural was eventually declared lost after its unceremonious removal from its historical post office in the 1970s. Having found its home at the Richmond Museum of History and Culture under the enthusiastic care of Director Melinda McCrary, great effort was taken with the museum board to find a mural expert to preserve, restore and install the mural for the enjoyment and education of generations to come.

Scott M. Haskins, Art Conservator and Author, and his team at Fine Art Conservation Laboratories were chosen as the “A” team. All of the mural conservation treatments are done with the idea that the mural will last generations into the future. When a paint company tells you about their best quality of paint, they mean it will last 10 years. We think in terms of generations, a century. Everything we do has a long-term future in mind,” says Haskins.

He’s careful to point out that they (the art conservators) are not artists and they don’t do anything creative. What they do is painstaking labor that requires some detective work to determine how and why the original materials used in the painting fall apart and how they respond to preservation treatments. “The art conservation process involves knowing how the artwork reacts to the environment.” Haskins and his team were trained decades ago in Italy and an impressive history of experience restoring treasured artwork and murals here in the US.

He points out that the government’s goal in funding art like Arnautoff’s was to
establish a legacy. “It was meant to be the artistic imprint on our community,” he says. “From a social conscience point of view, it is definitely worth saving.”

While art “restoration” might make one think the restorers are painting over something, Haskins says they don’t even have oil paint in their laboratory. Instead they work with special paint that is made for art conservation that can be removed easily, if needed sometime in the future, without damaging the original. They use cotton swabs and work on one color, one spot at a time. They are touching it up using a very small brush with just a few hairs, one dot of color at time. Then they custom apply varnish in many very thin layers, first with a brush and then a spray gun so that it is very even.

Haskins says the Richmond mural visually looks to be in good condition but “the drama and the traumatic effect of taking it off the wall has taken its toll.” Especially because the glue used in those days is rock hard. And the mural needs to be cleaned. “We’re looking to have zero impact on causing more stress. We have to stabilize or cancel out the stress in the painting from the past,” he says.

Richmond’s Arnautoff mural presents interesting preservation and restoration challenges. Haskins says that around World War II, there were many new inventions and the war prompted new technology: paints and varnishes, glues, resins, like for battle ships, radiators, new building supplies etc. “If artists found a spare can of paint around, they used it. When we get into our tediously exacting work, we don’t discount the fact that the artist could have used some random, non-art material type paint. We are hyper-vigilant.”

Haskins shares Melinda McCrary’s commitment to preserving the mural, “The idea of preserving our heritage and understanding our legacy is very important to the community,” he says. “Richmond doesn’t have a famous cathedral but we do have things that prompt or “trigger” our memory. People tell stories that perpetuate the valor and importance of the times. And this mural is not just a decoration or like a picture in a book. It’s a panoramic memory-jogging view.”

On two Tuesdays, October 20th and Nov. 10th, Scott M. Haskins in collaboration with the Richmond Museum presented a Zoom webinar to show, not only, the community the interesting aspects of this mural’s history and restoration but also give a super interesting educational presentation on what attendees can do on their own to “save their stuff,” or preserve collectibles, heirlooms and family heritage at home or the office. Mr. Haskins is a world renown author of several books on this subject and made the learning process a lot of fun.

Restoration of Richmond an Industrial City was completed in October 2020.


Source by Scott Haskins

January 17, 2022
View: 260


Living Room

1. Start your living room furniture plan with a mantel or the best seating furniture in the room and work from there.

2. In a large living room, create several seating areas that will comfortably accommodate both small and large gatherings, and make sure to limit the maximum grouping to eight people.

3. Divide large living rooms by 3, 5, 7 or 9, never by 2.

4. For a small living room space, select plain colored upholstery for sofas or chairs instead of bold plaids, stripes, or prints. Use texture of neutral tones if you can.

5. Rugs can be used as subdivisions in a room, acting as frameworks for specific seating areas without any architectural changes.

6. When it comes to small rooms, futons are ideal because they serve two functions – sleeping and seating.

7. Don’t push your sofa up against the wall. Think of it as an opportunity to show off its back. For many of us, we simply use an end table. But by placing a folding table and a couple of chairs behind the sofa, you are creating a cozy breakfast nook. You can also consider converting it into a desk by adding a chair and a task lamp. If your living space is compact, simply put shelving, storage behind the sofa.

8. End tables should be higher than 30″. Nightstand should be somewhere from 36″ to 38″ in height.

9. For modern decor, strong, clear colors are easier to live with than pale colors in the long run. People tend to think the opposite way, but believe it or not, we get bored of pale, soft colors much quicker.

10. Allow 15-18 inches of legroom between coffee tables and sofas.

11. The optimal height for a coffee table is somewhere between 20″ and 24″, depending on your height and comfortable zone.

12. When using velvet on sofas or chairs, make sure always use low-pile velvet. This is because if you put plush velvet on seats, you’ll see the shadow of a person behind when he/she gets up. A big mistake!

13. Don’t hang a mirror between windows, because this would create distracts from the view. And don’t place mirrors in EVERY room or over EVERY mantel! Mirrors by themselves are not art, and your room needs art.

14. The perfect amount of space between a mirror and the top of a mantel is 7”!

15. Every room of your house or flat needs a touch of black, whether placing a black furniture, upholstery, or accessories.

16. In winter time, use warm accent color to highlight certain areas in the living room to achieve the modern look without making you feel ‘cold’. For example, if you have a white or pale sofa, toss a few orange or red cushions on it; rest an orange vase on the shelf above the TV; get a golden, white or ruby red rug to lie beneath the coffee table.

17. In old days, women would match their pillows to the bedspread. Nowadays, it will look more chic to have a variety of throw pillows made from different fabrics. Don’t pair up pillows as though they’re animals on Noah’s Ark. Try an odd number of pillows on a sofa.

18. Throw pillows with Turkish corners are so much plumper and look more luxe than the “perfect” linear and regular square ones. And they soften and complement a modern sofa very well.

19. To fashion a peaceful reading spot for your sofa, use plush knit and tapestry pillows of different sizes alongside quilted satin. Choose closely related colors for the pillows to keep the look balanced; satin you use will add romance.

20. For television watching, the traditional guidance for viewing distance is 2 times the size of the TV screen.

21. The ideal height to hang your flat-screen TV is at eye level when you’re in viewing position.


22. For most modern bedrooms, a bed should be 23″ off the floor, no higher.

23. When placing your bed, make sure to allow a minimum of 24” in between the bed and the wall in order to get out of the bed comfortably.

24. Use cream or pale yellow paper-backed linen on bedroom walls – it gives your most private room a softness that no paint can match!

25. A bench at the foot of the bed should be no less than 2″ shorter than the mattress width.

26. To create a rustic countryside bedroom, keep the bed, bench, nightstand and dresser in light colored wood, with wooden laminate flooring made of pine or cedar. And ideally the bed should have four posters.

27. If you like a rustic English countryside design, make sure you want to have the following in place: an aged trunk or a bench with distressed light colored paint at the foot of the bed, a wicker dust bin, pristine white linen on the bed, white sheer curtains, a lime green chair and rug, a bunch of cheerful daisies, and more.

28. To decorate a classic bedroom with a welcome sight, instead of having a bench, put in an ornate settee at the foot of the bed. Pick bed, dresser and chair that are carved. Hang a chandelier in the ceiling. Rest a thick bedcover with tassels to add to the opulence of the bedroom. Place crystal photo frames and vases on the dresser.

29. A bed runner should be 18-24 inches in width and about 24 – 30 inches longer than the width of your bed.

Dining Room

30. Don’t place round dining table in a long, rectangular dining room, and vice versa-refrain from putting a rectangular table in a square dining room.

31. At the dining table, allow at least 24” space for each person. Again when placing a dining table, allow at least 48” from the edge of the table to the wall or buffet.

32. Choose dining chairs for how they look and function. Paradoxically, they don’t need to be so comfortable, because this would encourage bad posture while dining. If the dining chairs are slightly uncomfortable, it keeps people attentive to the conversation.

33. To captivate attentions, you can consider placing chairs in different designs or colors at each end of the dining table. This breaks visual monotony and dullness.

34. To make a small dining room look bigger, place a glass dining table is most effective because the glass table top opens up the view beyond. Have you heard of “see-through space”?

35. Make sure the height difference between your dining tables and chairs are in the range of 11″-13″ for most comfortable sitting position.

36. To dress up your dining room, place a wine rack near the dining table will add some nice character to the space, provided you like collecting wines. A wine rack with modern chrome creates a contemporary feel, and distressed wrought iron will produce a rustic look.

37. To add warmth and coziness to your room, use un-lacquered hardware; to create cool and modern flairs, use lacquered, glass, metal furniture.

38. Large-scale article can take your room up a notch. For instance, use a large lampshade on a large lamp, an oversize vase, or a vast ottoman. They will have a wow effect.

Kid’s Rooms

39. For kid’s rooms, a most up-to-date concept is that instead of a regular bunk bed, place a pull out one. The first bunk bed is of the regular height, while the second bed can slide in under the first. So the upper bed will serve as a couch during the daytime and the lower one can be pulled out at nights. This way, you save more space for your kids to play on.

40. If the kid’s room is long, use two single beds; placing them side by side would waste space. Place one bed behind the other against the wall, and create a storage partition in between.


41. Before starting design the kitchen, you need to understand a concept called “work triangle”. It is an imaginary shape that is connecting the centre of the sink, the cook top and the refrigerator. The guideline is: the sum of three sides should not exceed 24 feet and each arm of the triangle should be in a range of 4 feet to 9 feet. This idea is not only for aesthetic, but also function – you don’t have to ‘travel’ between the three key points in the kitchen and improve efficiency.

42. An island with 5′ wide by 8′ long is a perfect fit for most kitchens in this country. You want to be able to reach across it effortlessly. And you certainly don’t want an aircraft carrier in your kitchen.


43. The bathroom is a very personal space. To convert it from being a white clinic room to one that is visually appealing, buy a countertop basin in clean lines and rest it on a wooden vanity. This offers a wonderful contrast while remains classic, and always looks chic. The wooden vanity also gives you ample storage space.

44. Refrain from matching your sanitary ware to the tiles on the floor. It’s always safe to pick white or off-white sanitary ware, no matter what the color your tiles are.

45. For modern interior decoration, lay tiles in dimensions of 2′ x 1′. Use neutral colors in beige, slate or light grey to make the bathroom look slicker.

46. Serving as an accent piece, highlighter tiles on the wall are magic to complement the main tiles in the bathroom. You can choose to place the highlighter tiles one below the other from ceiling to floor, in at least 2 feet width, right behind the basin or on the wall of the shower area.

47. The rule of the bathroom is quality and contrast. Buy soap dispensers, vases, toothbrush holders, or any accessories in colors that stand out and are different from the colors of the walls and tiles.

48. Never use a sconce over a mirror in the bathroom-it will cast an unflattering shadow on your face. Place the sconce beside of the mirror and it will provide a more flattering and natural light.

Wall & Ceiling

49. Never paint a ceiling stark white, because all white paint has a bit of gray in it, and it takes the room down. Paint the ceiling a cream shade. A good paint formula for a ceiling is the trim color plus 50% white.

50. Before you paint ceiling and walls, obey the 9 feet rule. If your ceiling is over 9 feet, paint it one shade darker than the wall color. For a low ceiling shorter than 9 feet, go one or two shades lighter for the ceiling.

51. In general, the floor should be a little darker than the walls.

52. Painting one room in 2 different finishes will make it look a bit higher.

53. To give your room architectural detail when it doesn’t have any, paint a 1.5″ to 2″ lining stripe around the ceiling and up the walls in the corners.

54. As David Hicks put it, “if you’re going to paint the walls white, you need art.”

55. Where to hang your artwork? People come in different height, so this is a moving target. But a good rule of thumb to start with, 63″above the floor is a perfect viewing height for most pieces.

56. When hanging a series of paintings in the living room, keep the gap between the paintings 2″ to 2Ã��Ã�½” to fully utilize the wall space, and keep a minimum 9” between the pictures and top of sofas.

57. If you have a painting that looks too small above your sofa, don’t center it. Here is a magic fix – move it a few inches to the left. The negative space will become part of the painting.

58. When framing a painting with a mat, use a mat with 8-ply thickness-the increased depth of the resulting bevel can make any artwork look important.

59. Avoid matching the color of your wall to one of your fabrics. It will be too strong. Try to find a grayed-out version of that color.

60. When painting the walls, go slightly stronger than you’re comfortable with. After the project has finished, if the color looks too intense, gray-out the color with its complement and wash it on. Pour the paint in a tray, then with a wet rag slosh and rub the new color over the old. In the end, the color will become the weaker and quieter version you just love.

Blinds and Curtains

61. For a cool Greek look, pick wood blinds for windows and paint them in white color. In the meantime, paint walls turquoise and use white furniture.

62. Curtains add style, warmth and texture to rooms. For a classic room with large arched or French windows, put up curtains in a scallop shape is a good way.

63. Use curtains as a magic tool to bring in balance in your rooms. For example, curtains in turquoise or violet well complement sofas in stark white upholstery. You get the idea.

64. You can use sheer or organza window curtains alone or as a second layer behind the main curtain, to achieve many different styles – whether contemporary, rustic or classical. You can experiment with the curtains to see what colors of light is let in.

65. For a contemporary room, install a tab curtain header. For rooms with classical or rustic furniture, place pleated or smocked curtain headers to create an ornate look.

Doors and Windows

66. Your front door sets the tone for what lies beyond. Add finesse to your place with a few accessories to the door is a smart and easy way. Use door knobs, handles, nameplates, letter boxes that are made of brass, nickel and steel for styles of range from contemporary to traditional.

67. The door knocker should reflect your style inside. Install a brass knocker, beautifully carved door knobs and handles if your furniture is classical, or use sleek and shiny chrome accessories in geometric patterns to enhance a modern flair.

68. For summer, windows need t be casual, to let in sun and air and take in the surrounding views. Opt for smooth fabrics to keep rooms feeling fresh. Add natural greens and citrus yellows to set off crisp whites; all three colors enhance a sense of airiness. Winter window treatments tend to be heavier and more formal. Taffeta, damask, chenille, silk and velvet are some traditional fabric choices. Pull them back with a tassel for a dressed-up look, and use lined dense, matte-finished outer drapes contrasted with a luxurious inner lining.

69. Curtains and drapes should always touch the floor!

Furniture and Accessories

70. Use your largest furniture as a focal point to start your room plan (In a living room, this would be your sofa; in a bedroom, your bed; and in the dining room, a dining table). Use remaining smaller furnishings to define areas and create ambience.

71. Never place a large piece of furniture at the entrance of a room.

72. Arranging furniture is more of an art than a science. Modular furniture such as sectionals allows for a variety array of arrangements.

73. Place an occasional chair or tall plant in a ‘dead zone’, an area where is empty with no apparent use.

74. It may sound counter-intuitive, but there are times using large pieces of furniture when decorating small spaces can effectively make your room look larger. Instead of fitting in excess small pieces like a sofa, an ottoman, a coffee table and chairs, try installing a larger size of sectional, a single table or bench, and an accent chair.

75. Grouping sofa pieces together in an L-shaped plan, you create an intimacy that encourages conversation. This arrangement feels as cozy for two guests as it does for six. A U-shaped grouping takes a more formal approach, with chairs placed symmetrically across from each other and more space between the seating, for easy traffic flow.

76. Transparent accessories such as glass and crystal wares wonderfully complement an all-white room.

77. To achieve flexibility in your room, look for multi-use furniture like a large ottoman or bench that can also serve as a coffee table.

78. Change your room accents for winter and summer using different furniture arrangement. When spring arrives, you shift the focal point from the fireplace to the garden by orienting the sofa toward the window to capitalize the garden view. When winter kicks in, rearrange your sofa facing toward the warm fireplace.

79. A diagonal arrangement of your sofa pieces makes your square room space look more dynamic.

80. Placing small abstract sculpture will instantaneously energize and modernize a room.

81. Furniture and objects can have more than one useful life. Take side tables for example. A handful of types of furniture can be used as a side table – All you need is a flat surface next t your sofa or armchair with space enough for some combination of lamps, books, drinks, etc. Think beyond the ordinary. A milk pail, a wooden chest, a trunk passed down through generations, or a tall stack of books can serve your needs well, and add an unexpected personal touch to your room’s decor.

82. Accessories don’t have to be formal. They can be a casual expression of whimsy. Mix modern vases and picture frames with vintage game boards or primitive artworks; display old hand mirrors r antique toys with fine crystal; add natural objects; use stones paperweights; add a bowl of leaves on the credenza; display a sleek collection of silver candlesticks to create a palette of contrasting textures.

83. Accessories give personality, paintings and artwork give quality and mirrors give depth.


84. Don’t fall prey to using more than three fabric patterns in one room.

85. If you love a fabric but it looks too strong, check the reverse side and very often than not it may just do the trick.

86. After using a fabric in a room, never use it again anywhere else in your house. Just do not match your fabrics, because this will make your rooms look over decorative.

87. It is safe to use small fabric patterns for a smaller room – of course, and for a larger room alike – when the patterns are seen at a distance; they tend to be read as solid.

Carpet and Rug

88. For a narrow hall or a narrow staircase, make sure you install the carpet as a runner and leave a 3″ wide border on both sides to make the hall or staircase appear wider than it is.

89. Nothing shrinks your room faster than placing a tiny ‘postage stamp’ rug at the seating area. Instead you want a good sized rug but need to keep 12″ of wood showing around the rug.

90. Carpet with leather borders can always make a room richer.

91. What rugs are you buying, pattern or solid? If you have lots of pattern in your furniture or drapes, use an area rug with little visible pattern. Otherwise, lay down a patterned rug will bring a vivid life to the room.


92. Limit overhead lighting to bathrooms and laundry rooms. Overhead light is just too harsh and flat. If there is too much light from overhead sources, we instinctually feel exposed. The rule of thumbs, at least 50% of the lighting is not from overhead for most of your rooms, except hallways, stairways and the entry hall – these are the only places where overhead lighting is necessary.

93. If there’s too much light from one direction, our instinct will signal that we would be unable to identify danger. This gives us a feeling of uneasiness.

94. Lighting creates atmosphere, drama, and intrigue. All you need to accomplish this is to use a dimmer switch as much as possible. The “pre-set” type is quite useful, as you can leave them dimmed and just switch them on and off.

95. Over-lit rooms lose their magic. A beautiful lit room will have 4 layers of light: recessed ceiling lights, drop-down ceiling fixtures, walls sconces and picture lights, and floor and table lamps.

96. Task-oriented lights in rooms such as kitchens and bathrooms should be bright enough to provide ample light on the work plane, but put overhead lighting in these rooms on dimmers in order to moderate the light – and the mood – in the room.

97. Light sources of different temperatures create different effects.

98. Landscape lighting is a great way to prevent windows from turning black at night. Lit trees and landscaped elements provide a fabulous view beyond the window.

99. Don’t waste money to get a costly lamp. Invest in lampshades, not in lamps. You can get a lamp from Crate & Barrel or even IKEA, and make it look glorious. Use old saris, antique Chinese paper, box-pleated silk, anything you find attractive can be converted into a fabulous lampshade.

100. To create clean and modern feels, use white opaque paper for lampshade. Fussy shades date a room quickly.

101. Good rule of thumb for lamp wattage: 50-60 watts for the dining room; 70-80 watts for the overhead light in the bathroom and 60 watts on each side; 18-watt/830 compact fluorescent lamps (for providing adequate reading light according to Lighting Institute); 75-100 watts for your living room.


Source by Simon Tao

January 17, 2022
View: 244


Every day we are influenced by what is around us… the words that are said, the smells we smell, the sights we take in. The goal of feng shui is to promote beauty, harmony, and aspiration, the raising of our sights toward lofty, noble, and worthwhile goals.

The poet Maya Angelou said that we must be careful about the words we speak because the words will “hang on the walls.” Of course, she is talking about what we do in the figurative sense. However it is also true of what we hang on our walls in the literal sense. That’s why it is important that we surround ourselves with uplifting sights.

Feng shui encourages the application of beautiful, sustaining images. Pictures and artwork of depressing subjects, violence, or pictures whose presence makes us sad or unhappy are not suitable or appropriate for the walls of our home. Instead, only those images that are inspiring, uplifting, and beautiful should be placed on the walls.

Fortunately, you can practice symbolic feng shui by the selection of certain images, such as people, happy occasions, beauty, wealth, or power. Particular pictures in feng shui have special meanings and can be used wherever you desire more interest. For instance, a poster or painting of a water fall is an excellent way to boost career feng shui — and income!

When you are looking to improve your feng shui, consider simply looking around. Then, see if the images you are looking at are saying what you want them to. If not, consider replacing those images with pictures that make a positive, uplifting statement. Check the tips below for more ideas of positive feng shui images.

1. Use beautiful water images for career or wealth help. When placed in the north sector of the home, living room, or office, these images can provide an immediate boost to the career. To boost career chi in the bedroom (or anywhere!) consider adding an image of a tortoise.

Images of waterfalls and lakes are also appropriate for the southeast wealth sector. For more career or wealth help, consider adding a picture of a ship sailing INTO your home or office. Ships are especially auspicious harbingers of coming wealth. Do consider adding a ship picture in the southwest, where it will help with relationships AND wealth because water is beneficial in the SW until 2023.

2. Gain recognition, friends, and beneficial relationships with images of happy people. Looking for more friends or a more active social life? Maybe even FAME? Pictures of happy occasions and happy people are EXCELLENT ways to bring more people into your life, as well as happier relationships, and greater social recognition. Pictures such as the ones below are excellent for enhancing your social status, both personally and professionally.

These can be hung in the south or southwest corners. Other good choices for the south and southwest are horses and birds. Horses hung in the southwest sector can offer a good chance of travel, so be prepared if you hang a picture of a horse here!

3. Receive help from mentors and influential people with images in the NW. To receive help from those in the position to offer you advancement in your career, studies, or life in general, you need to enhance your “Power People” sector. This is the NW corner of your home, living room, or office.

Images of international scenes such as the Eiffel tower, the tower of London, the pyramids of Giza, and other scenes are excellent for receiving help from all corners of the globe. Likewise, images of metal structures, circular images, and golden or metallic colors are all excellent choices.

Maps, pictures of maps, globes, etc. are all beneficial for the NW sector of your home, office, or living room. Because this is the “heaven” location, this is also a wonderful location for pictures and images of religious figures or deities, angels, or religious locations such as Jerusalem or Mecca. Grand people such as Albert Einstein, Martin Luther King, Gandhi, or world leaders are also wonderful choices for increasing Powerful People help.

Be sure to surround yourself with pictures of people or places that you aspire to and that inspire you. We must all have something that lifts us up and makes us want to achieve more and aim higher in our lives. Find a picture that symbolizes that FOR YOU.

4. Avoid depressing, negative, or violent images. Do you have images in your home that remind you of something sad, mean, violent, or failure? If so, these images are constantly reinforcing these negative messages. Look around and if you have any pictures or elements like this, consider replacing them. Otherwise, these images will continue to imbue your home with negative energy. Yes, even if your picture is considered “fine art”, it is not worth sacrificing the energy of your home for this investment in negativity.


Source by Kathryn Weber

January 17, 2022
View: 254



Oil pastels are a fairly new art medium. In the mid 1920’s, the first soft pastel was developed. Called Cray-pas, this soft pastel was considered an upgrade from crayons. It wasn’t until 1947, upon the request of the artists Pablo Picasso and Henri Goetz, the materials manufacturer Sennelier set about to create a soft, artists’ quality pastel.

Picasso wanted a pastel stick that could be used on a variety of surfaces, like wood, clay or canvas. Goetz want a pastel which could be used with directness and immediacy, and would allow him to work directly on a surface, without brushes, palette knives or any other kind of tool.
Sennelier came out with a soft oil pastel in 1949. It had a desirable soft consistency, was available in a broad range of brilliant colors and the pigments were of a professional permanent and acid-free quality. Sennelier’s oil pastels were the seminal oil pastel sticks from which all other brands have originated. More recently, a larger oil pastel stick was developed which enables artists to create large, colorful works, without the accoutrement of oil painting: turpentine, linseed oil, rags, brushes, palettes, and palette knives. The qualities of immediacy and directness have made large oil stick popular among many contemporary artists.

The pigments in hard pastels, oil pastels and oil sticks are the same as those used in oil paints. The essential difference between oil paints, hard and soft pastels and oil sticks is the binder ingredient used to hold the pigments together. Oil paints are basically pigments in a base of linseed oil and drying agents, liquid enough to be extruded from a tube. Hard pastels have less oil and wax binder than oil pastels. Oil pastels, having more oil and wax content, are softer in consistency and body. To date, oil pastels are available in two qualities: student and professional.


Chalk or hard pastels have been around longer since the Renaissance. (Leonardo DaVinci wrote about pastels and many of his drawings were done in red chalk.) Hard pastels can be blended with the finger or with a small blending stick to produce subtle shadings of subtle and delicate shading and highlight effects. Because of their hard, dry consistency, they are powdery, semi-transparent and excellent for creating smooth, “seamless” transitions of color.

Because oil pastels are softer, they are semi-opaque in nature. One color can be layered over another color and successfully cover it. Many overlapping layers can be created. integrating two colors with oil pastels can be done with networks of small lines or strokes. Because oil pastels have great covering ability, they can replicate the process of painting with oil paints or acrylics.
Oil pastels, because of their wax and oil content, never completely dry. For the finished artwork, an application of acrylic varnish will protect the oil pastel surface. An oil pastel artwork is best protected by a mat, glass and a frame. Thinned, an oil pastel’s consistency is much like water color, and can employed in washes and transparent overlays of colors. Oil pastels can be diluted with turpentine or mineral spirits. Oil pastels can be used on any porous surface. The best support for durability and permanence is an archival, acid-free, heavy weight paper, board or primed canvas.


In depicting a sunset, for example, where colors may consist of a variety of shades oranges, reds, purples and blues, integrating each color area can be done by blending one color into another by layering with small line networks. Laying down an area of light orange, then going over it with small strokes of dark orange will begin the gradation. Light orange can be brought back in over the dark orange to introduce the necessary light/dark gradations. Then the darker orange can be brought in to make the gradation more explicit. By using small, networks of lines, each color can be worked into by other colors until the desired effect is achieved. By blending colors in this way, transitions from one color to another are smooth, but the vibrant quality of intermingling line networks of colors is retained.


Another example of integrating colors with oil pastels can be demonstrated in self portrait. Upon close observation, one can see that skin has many subtle flesh colors. One area in the cheeks, for example, may be redder. Color areas around the chin may have a yellow hue. Color areas around the eyes may have blue or browns. Let’s take the cheek area, for example. A basic flesh tone has been put down in that area. A redder blush of skin tone can be produced by introducing a network of small lines of a light pink color over this. Now, the flesh tone color can be layered with small lines over the light pink. The interplay between these two color areas will produce the blush in the cheek area. Working with exchanges of these two colors, a third or even fourth color, for example, light blue or light green, may be subtly interlaced with the flesh tone and pink networks to produce subtle color passages which replicate even further the many colors exhibited in flesh.


If you choose to go out to the woods, the sea shore, or your backyard to create a colorful, painterly artwork, there is a definite advantage to using oil pastels. Just pack up your box of oil pastels, tablet of paper and head on out! In your hand, oil pastels will act quickly to catch a certain slant of sunlight. a shoreline quickly changing from green to blue because of clouds coming up from the horizon, or shadows moving across a forest landscape.

Indeed, you can see how oil pastels were the product of Picasso’s need to work quickly, with expression and using a broad range of wonderful colors. And you can use your oil pastel drawings and sketches as references for oil paintings because the colors of oil pastels translate well to the painting medium. Immediacy and directness are qualities in oil pastels that make them truly a contemporary medium.


If you are considering working with oil pastels, buy good quality (professional) pastels. They will have a dense body of pigment and stronger layering qualities. Professional quality pastels will most accurately duplicate the small-line networking color integration technique described in this article.

Cheaper student grade oil pastels have a higher wax content and because the pigment body is less dense, they are often more like crayons and will not layer or cover well. In cheaper oil pastels, often the more expensive pigments have more wax and oil binders. This keeps the price low, but also the quality. For the most part, student quality oil pastels are much more transparent and colors, even upon heavy application, will appear washed-out and faded.


The brilliance of colors, ease of use and portability of oil pastels makes this art medium a wonderful tool to try, whether you are just discovering your creative self or want to experiment with a new medium. Discover oil pastels for yourself and enjoy creating beautiful, colorful artwork!


Source by Lois Dewitt

January 17, 2022
View: 193


Now that spring is finally here, it is time to do some lightening, brightening and cleaning. But best of all, it is time for fun, cheery spring decor accessories! Make your home sing by introducing some pretty, spring colors and textures and get happy.

Here are the 6 secrets you need to know to get a gorgeous spring home:

1. COLOR– Now is the time you’ll want to replace darker winter items with fresh, light spring colors. These items can include anything from interior paint color, to throw pillows, curtains, rugs, towels and bedding. You can even switch up the red and green candles that were used at Christmas for some softer pastel colors. Think Easter! The colors are always a warm but muted pastel palette. Flowers are a simple way to add splashes of color to a room, add a fun vase and off you go. Recently I found a set of placemats and napkins that sparked an eat-in kitchen makeover done in pale yellows, cream, taupe and teal. A teal vase of pink tulips topped of the look.

If you get stuck for color ideas you can check out the Pottery Barn site for their seasonal color palette of paint chips to get some ideas. Beautiful choices for spring include ivory, taupe, pale blues, pale buttery yellows, spa gray and crisp clean whites. You can use some accent colors in Chocolate brown, mocha, teal, and beige to warm up the space. The idea is to keep it fresh!

2. TEXTURE– It is interesting to the eye and pleasing to the touch. Texture can be brought into a room in many manners. Whether it is a set of new luxurious bedding or some soft throw pillows, you’ll want to add some spring fabrics into the mix. Out with the corduroy, wool, velvet and flannel and in with the linens, light cotton and sheer materials. The idea is to have lightness and brightness. Look at fashion as a guide, you wouldn’t want to wear warm wool when the weather calls for cool cotton, so is the fashion in your home, calling for an update! You can add texture with candles, artwork, new furniture, as well as by adding interesting décor items such as shells and sand. Some specific items you might want to focus on are rugs, bedding, curtains, shower curtains, towels, slipcovers and throw pillows.

3. THEMES-Spring and summer have themes all their own. These usually include floral prints, toile, beach, cottage, island and sea. Use these themes to make a room your own. Maybe you don’t want your entire house to look like a beach house, why not incorporate a few pretty shells in the bathroom or place a large conch shell on top of a stack of magazines in a living room. You could add some glassware and a pitcher on a pretty tray out on the backyard patio. Why not change a few pieces of wall art or pictures? These are simple, but noticeable changes. If you love something but can’t afford to make your whole house reflect it, choose one room or place some small splashes of that theme throughout the house. You’ll have fun this way finding new items for your home without fretting over the cost.

4. FURNITURE-What a great time to invest in a pretty new patio set. Maybe you live alone and want something smaller scale-get a bistro set for two! It is less expensive and there are lots of choices from teak to wrought iron. Find a table large enough to enjoy an afternoon stack or an evening dinner. Be sure to set up fun lounge chairs poolside should you be lucky enough to have a pool in your own backyard.

Aside from the great outdoors, you can bring some of that outdoor look inside. Bringing some wicker furniture in will lessen the heavy feeling of other pieces you may have.

5. FLOWERS-Most people think of outdoor gardening when flowers are mentioned. Be sure to treat yourself to some regular inexpensive blooms indoors this spring. Tulips, lilies and gerbera daisies are all in season and come in a variety of colors to choose from. Try to choose flowers that look and smell heavenly! Lilies will probably get you the most bang for your buck here! I love to place these in the kitchen, bathrooms, bedrooms and entryway. Get creative with your outdoor flowers, add color in the front and backyard paying particular detail to the entry door. Add cascading greens to large urns and place them on either side of the doorway filled with beautiful spring delights.

6. TRENDS-Be aware of trends but don’t blow your re-decorating budget on super trendy decor items. As a Professional Home Stager and Re-designer, I always recommend using items that are inexpensive but have the most impact. If you love a color but couldn’t dream of painting your whole room that color or you have a rich fabric you adore but it’ll break the bank, just add splashes through smaller items. My favorites are candles, throw pillows, art, placemats, bedding, rugs and flowers. Trends come and go so be sure the trend is something you embrace. Like fashion, not every trend will be one that you will want to be seen in. I for one, have turned down many fashion trends that are uncomfortable, ugly and downright not me! I opt for more classic styles that reflect my personality and taste but simply inject the trend factor by using color and pattern most often.

Like many of my clients, if you have existing furniture and accessories and you desire a boost by getting a fresh perspective to update your home, contact Florida Home Staging for more information on Redesign. We’d be happy to assist you this spring! We also provide Home Staging services to Central Florida and surrounding residents as they prepare to sell their home. We know exactly what buyers are looking for in a home and will design your home to appeal to a mass audience to sell quickly and for top dollar.


Source by Karla M. Davis

January 17, 2022
View: 250


When you decorate the walls in your home, there are a number of facts, that support you should buy paintings directly from an artist, instead of buying reproductions in online shops or physical shops.

  • You get an original, unique painting that no one else has
  • The painting is carefully created, down to the smallest detail
  • You get a quality product, made of excellent materials
  • You get the most bang for your buck – no commission to online or physical galleries
  • The selling price is higher when you want to make changes in your collection
  • You get a better service, the artist will answer any questions you have

You get an original unique painting

When you buy an original, unique painting from an artist, you get a unique piece of art, there is only one of one-of-a-kind.

And you can use the artwork to design the decor in your home with your own special touch, without any fear that your family, friends or neighbors already have the same painting or can imitate your decor.

If we look at the definition of the word “original”, The Danish Dictionary says it is an “object or phenomenon that is the basis for a copy.”

Be aware that many online and physical stores that advertise with “original” paintings, actually sell reproductions where the artistic value is practically non-existent.

Copies are typically made at art factories in China and other Eastern countries. The workers there doesn’t always have the best working conditions. Employees work many hours a day without any breaks, and the production is made in buildings, that lack basic needs such as glass in window and heating during winter.

There is also a couple of Danish mass producing art factories, which employ Danish artists who produce copies under pseudonyms.

It may be difficult to spot whether it’s a real or fictitious artist and if it’s an original painting or a copy – here are a few tips you can use, factors that indicate it is a real artist:

Start by Googling the artist and see what information comes up. Does the artist’s contact information appear, is he having his own website, does the search show earlier exhibitions?

  • If there is an artist profile on the store’s website, and it shows a photo and a biography of the artist.
  • If an artist profile with biography is attached to the painting, and there is shown a photograph of the artist.
  • Things that indicate it is an original unique painting:
  • If there is a real artist behind and not only a pseudonym.
  • If the painting is signed with the full name, title and year on the back of the canvas.

The painting is created with great care

Unique paintings, made by real life artists, are characterized by the artist using hours and hours of work on composition, texture, color composition and color blending. The result is an artwork with endless small details, beautiful colors and great depth, which means you will continuously discover new details, textures, and details.

Initially the artist plan the composition, style, subject, and medium. After that, the process of creating the painting consists of a series of different steps: priming of the canvas, applying texture pulp (1-3 operations), painting the subject (1-5 operations), top finish and at last, a topcoat.

It varies a lot, how many times an artist must work on a painting before it is ready for the public, but typically it’s worked over 5-10 times. Especially when the creation requires many thin translucent layers and transparent colors, it has to be worked over many times.

Characteristic for the production of reproductions is, that there is very little time for producing each painting, normally there are only 15-20 minutes available.

This means, that it is only possible to make a painting with a maximum of three layers before it is ready. Often the painting will be manufactured in one process, and the employee is parallel working on up to 50 copies of identical paintings. Therefore, reproductions are often missing details and depth.

You get a quality product

Many artists take pride in using paint, materials and tools in a very high quality.

Basically, a distinction is made between three different qualities within artist paint: School quality, student quality, and artist quality.

What factors do determine the quality of the painting? It’s a question of the pigments being used, the proportion pigments have relative to the fillers, and the bindings.

The highest quality paint is using the most expensive pigments, the largest share of pigments and contains little or no fillers.

School quality is the cheapest and is used for training in school classes. It’s not suitable for a real painting, used to decorate your home with, since the poor quality means difficulties in mixing with other colors, the paint can not maintain the texture and dries to a flat shape, and lack colors fade resistance, opacity, tinting strength and transparency.

Student quality is a basic paint, which is used for priming of paintings and opaque surfaces. It is a sound quality, that has some good characteristics so the colors can be mixed, and they keep the texture to an acceptable degree. The only problem is, that these colors have trouble showing transparency without the use of mediums.

Artist quality is top of the line with high lightfastness, high opacity, strong color tinting and high transparency. All in all, it gives the possibility of making paintings with very fine details, brilliant colors, and great depth. And the high proportion of pigments secures that the paintings will have a long shelf life, without the colors starting to fade away or paint flaking off.

The professional artist uses canvas in good quality, made of cotton and/or linen.

The vast majority of artists always finish the process with a layer of protection in the form of varnish or gel. It secures a painting that will last for many years, and also makes it easier to clean.

Reproductions usually use artist paint in school quality and student quality – the outstanding artist quality will not be used because of a high price. And copies don’t get the topcoat that protects against UV rays and sunlight and provides durability for many years to come.

The canvas they use are often made of 100% polyester, providing a rigid surface, that is unable to stretch with the paint under various humidity conditions.

You get the most bang for your buck

If artists are selling through online or physical galleries, they often must pay up to 50% of the sales amount to gallery owners.

Obviously when you are dealing directly with the artist, there is no paid commission, and there is thus no costly intermediaries to monetize on the artworks.

The selling price is higher

When you want to sell a painting you initially bought from a professional artist, the prices keep a higher level, compared to copy paintings you buy online and in physical stores.

Generally, you can get approximately the same amount as your buying price for paintings purchased from an artist, whereas reproductions fall drastically in price, so you only get about 25% of the amount you originally paid.

And if you spot a talented artist, you can make money when you sell again.

It requires a lot of practice, and that you know what to look for when buying art.

You get a better service

When you deal directly with a professional artist, he or she will answer any questions you have. Whether it comes to design, materials, maintenance or otherwise.

And you have of course also the possibility of letting the artist creating a unique piece with your own colors and designs.

Many artists also offer to help with transportation.


Source by Michael Lonfeldt

January 17, 2022
View: 260


Your living room takes up a number of different roles which requires challenging decorating techniques and demands proper planning. You may want your room to cater and entertain your guests, or you might want it to be your relaxing casual space accommodating only your leisure activities for example watching TV, reading or mingling with family members. So before you begin to decorate your living room, plan out your budget and accommodate your planning according to it. This article will present your some economic ways to bring color to your living room and enhance its decoration.

Splash Your Niche

You can add a dash of color and shade by painting a single wall with a bold color. This will change the central point of your room without the help of any expensive or lavish decorating item. Niches and alcoves are perfect places to paint. A splash of some bold color which may be a darker tone of the rest of the walls or be compliment to your general color theme of the living room, is the perfect way to bring a creative change in your living room.

Toss Some Sofa Cushions

You can also add some cushions or pillows to your furniture, which adds color to your solid furniture. Bright and patterned cushions add the right color to your room furniture and also include comfort to your seating.

The Mother Nature effects

You can use the help of green plants or flowers to add not just color to your living room but also personality and fragrance. It adds a good and soothing feeling to your room. However, if you are not fond of plants inside the house or cannot take much care of the plants then you may opt for artificial flowers which only need to be dusted.

Install a Fancy Lamp

For a more classic look, add an interesting, fancy lamp inside your room. You can install electrical components inside some pot or sculpture of your choice which gives exclusiveness and personality to your room. The yellow lights play a soothing role and are immensely seductive.

Color the Floor

You can start to clear the floor by adding a colorful rug in your living room which adds texture and some fun element in the room. Using it on top of hardwood flooring or plain carpets can create an interesting effect. Try to opt for rugs which share the theme of the entire living room.

Artsy personalization

Personalize your family room in an artsy manner by adding a family photo gallery on a plain wall. Frame your photos and place them strategically on the wall to add color and uniqueness to your living room. You can further add decorative objects around the room on shelves, racks or tables. Antique objects, photos, jars of dry fruit or candies may be used.


Source by Shahid Ashraf

January 17, 2022
View: 332


Can you imagine a life without the existence of clocks? Probably not, as every single activity in a human’s life is counting on the direction of time. Not only as a keeper of time, but wall clocks might also be an affordable way to increase the architectural esthetic of your home decor.

From antique wall clock to modern timepieces, various designs with stylish frames, unique layouts, sizes, and colours are available that will attract your eyes. Here are a few stunning designs of wall clock online that will glam up the walls of the rooms.

Wall Clocks with Wooden Accent Emanate a Timeless Impression

Nothing comes in comparison to the wooden design crafts that bring an unparalleled charm and warmth to the house. With other home decorative items, an oversized and classic wooden clock can be a striking centrepiece in your house.

The first impression is always the ultimate. Decorating your drawing room with modern hanging wall watches crafted with a wooden framework adds a timeless impression and spices up your boring wall. Choose the illustrative wall watches design and enhance the living room decor to reflect your personality.

Wall Watches Framing with Family Pictures

Let’s try something out of the box. You can decorate a wall with wallpapers, stylish wall clock online that match with the family photo frames. You can create it expressively by collaborating your family pictures chronologically; depicting the stages of family growth and role structure can be a magnificent idea.

If you are always ready to explore something new and experimental, this can be fun. Buy wall clock online that goes well with the interiors of the room to make it more meaningful and give a dynamic touch to your walls.

Incorporating Ethnic Designs with modern Wall Watches

Treat your wall clocks as an architectural piece and incorporate your modern timepieces with ethnic home decor. If your house is full of ethnic hand-embroidered decorative items such as cushions, lampshades, and wall arts, pairing it with modern wall watches can be an innovative idea to make your living space attractive.

If you need a unique look for your home decor, definitely rustic metal wall clocks with open gear and mechanical details can be an extraordinary piece of art. You can shop these clocks online in India at an affordable range that gives a perfect ethnic touch to your living room decoration.

Illustrate A Vintage Look with Antique Clock

Styling your contemporary living room with a round shape antique wall clock decorated with large sized Roman numerals gives a vintage touch. The best is not to cover every portion of the wall, large wall watches will complete the allover look of your living space.

In case you want to keep it subtle and simple, place antique or big size vintage wall watches in your living room and add some modern furniture to complete the rest of the decor. Square or round, large or small, you can get varieties of antique wall clock online.

A Wall Dedicated to Just Clocks

You can dedicate a wall to clocks by creating a clock with various types, designs, and shapes of watches in one place. A textured or laminated wall decorated with a modern wall watches design can amplify the attractiveness of the wall.

Choosing a timepiece has become easier for online watches designs available on the web. A wall showing different designs of wall clock gives a chic look that is perfect for a contemporary living room.


Source by Suman S

January 17, 2022
View: 291


There are many shades of life and it can be beautifully depicted by the numerous emoticons connected with every felling. The colors and brightness all around demonstrates the vibrant shades of life. The beautiful canvas of life could be easily painted on the different walls of your surroundings. If we flashback the decorative wall ideas down to the past 10 years, we will find that there were no or less contribution of wall decors during that stage of time. Moving ahead with time and advancement, we are now many steps closer of filling the walls with different decorative ideas.

Wall décor is one of the coolest decorative ideas that are ruling the world of interior designing and people are becoming curious to add them in their homes also. Wall décor is a broad umbrella term and it involves the fixation of innovative, colorful pictures or wallpaper on the smooth surface of the walls.

These decorative ideas of wall are becoming the style statement that can give an ultra- modern look to your boring painted walls. Apart from adding decorative stickers to your wall, you can also change the outlook of walls by hanging beautiful antique or modern classy pieces on them. There are many offline as well as online shopping areas from where you can always order a huge variety with wider options, depending upon your need and requirements.

There are many advantages of wall décor. A few of them are summarized as:

1. Adds positivity: The wall décor brings positivity in the ambience. Places that have good wall décor are blessed with bouts of positivity.

2. Add visual treat: The visual outlook of the place is also magnified with the introduction of wall décor. Depending upon the mood and specific interest, one can easily select the appropriate well décor for their place.

3. Gives a premium look: Addition of art work on your wall will give you a fine decorative worth to your place. You can have a premium look of your place with the presence f various wall décor.

4. Makes you unique from others: Wall décor can add spice to your boring walls. You can keep your place outlook different and unique from others with the help of combination of different wall decors.

Types of Wall Décor used commonly:

1. Wall paintings: You can add a different look to your home by making it look more beautiful and unique with the adding of various types of paintings to your wall. You can pick any of the paintings that compliment your wall color or theme.

2. Wall clock: The wall clock is one of the safest ways to add decorative outlook to your place. It always works. You can go for either antique models or contemporary styles, in accordance to your need and preference.

3. Wall Shelves: Wall shelves are the decorative storage places for walls that can help you to add a great outlook to your place. You can utilize these wall shelves for keeping your belongings in a smarter and organized way.

4. Picture frames: Memories captured could be very easily portrayed through pictures. With the help of picture frames, you can easily give your wall décor a perfect look.

SO, if you are planning to renovate and re theme your house walls, get connected to professionals to make it look more vivid and beautiful!


Source by Achal Mehrotra

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