Contact: karenhetzer@gmail.com
So empty. The things to the right are just waiting to get picked up. The cabinet in the center is being taken by the coffee shop next door for storage and display...she's also getting the big rug I bought a couple months ago to cozy up her floor space.
The property owner put up the studs today that the mural is getting attached to and he wants to go ahead and put the finished part up tomorrow. He doesn't want to have to store it and then bring it back. I'm not crazy about it going up unfinished but I guess its not my call.
I tried laying out part of the third block before having to take it home to finish.
I finally decided on the Lake Worth Casino because I want to have at least a peek of ocean in one of these. I just sort of sketched in how the sand leads down to the ocean. I'm not doing the whole casino.....
Just part of it so I can squeeze in the bit of beach and ocean.......
I'll have to do some tweaking when the bottom panels go up...part of the casino sign and the dome will reach up onto the top panel. I want to get some palm trees in there too.
I should be handing over the keys about noon if all goes well.
Just a couple of hours away from being done with the top part and I'll knock that out tomorrow. I got the surveyor in and the infamous Barefoot Mailman (he walked the beach to deliver the mail).
I'm debating over whether to paint some name plates that would tell folks what or who they are looking at. Anyone got an opinion about that??
I little angel flew into the shop today and bought seven pieces of furniture...including the hutch. I made major reductions in the prices since she was interested in so many pieces and I'm happy I don't have to think about what to do with them. There are only five pieces left and I guess I'll just store them in a closet at home and list them on craigslist.

Crawling right along.......

Even though the trip is canceled I went ahead and checked in at Ford for my scheduled tuneup. Its been a couple of years, it was overdue. Sigh.............I also asked them to diagnose the squeaking sound that my trucks been making for the past couple of months, suffice it to say........I'm glad I canceled my trip, I probably wouldn't have made it up. My boots, bearings, rods, etc are all wearing out and need to be replaced asap.......too bad I don't have the $1200 they said it would take to do the work. Bright side?.......glad I'm not on the road!
Did a bit more on the mural today and will spend all day on it tomorrow.
The plan now is to just get this top section finished so the owners can store it away somewhere. I'll take the bottom part back to my apartment and work on it there, its not as big as this bit. I'm going to make this real easy for myself and just paint in sky and tops of trees in the two bottom pieces you see here, that way I won't have to stress about matching things up. One section I think will be the Lake Worth Casino with the bridge over the intracoastal that leads to it.....its on the ocean. The other may be the Lake Worth Auditorium which is now our City Hall. There's really much more to the history of Lake Worth and I'm thinking now that I probably should have done more of a collage of images rather than limiting myself to specific sections........well, I hope folks like it anyway :-)

Change of plans

I'm really glad that the job up in Philly was offered to me with the intent to help me rather than their 'need' for me because I decided I had to turn it down. It just wasn't making financial sense to travel the distance for this job and I couldn't shake the uneasy feeling, so I let it go. I will stay put and focus my energy on building work here.

I did a bit of work on the mural yesterday, adding some more trees and some children to the school scene.....more kids will be added.
Its been hard for me to focus on the mural with the shop closing and with trying to negotiate the details on a long distance job that I had originally agreed to do, but was quickly realizing was not a smart business move.
Tuesday is my last day with the shop doors open and Wednesday I will be moving whats left to my apartment. I'll try to sell the few remaining pieces on Craigslist.
I didn't work on the mural yesterday, rather I had some custom work that I had to get done and out. I worked on it a bit today and then spent some time helping our upstairs neighbor with some website lessons.
I have accepted that I probably won't be finished with this before I have to leave for Philly next Friday, so I've asked the landlords if it could be stored somewhere until I return.
I still have three pet portraits to do too, so I think I'm going to attempt to get them done over the weekend and then get back to the mural Monday. I want to be completely out of the studio on Wednesday so I have Thursday to prepare for my leave early Friday. I'd love to do this trip in just two days....its about a twenty hour drive. I can usually make it to just about the NC border on the first day. I remember driving this trip once in one fell swoop in a VW bug....21hrs straight only stopping for breaks/gas. Ahhhhhhh.....youth :-)
I started on the next block with the first school house in Lake Worth. You can see I've also made some changes to the design.....from the small round inserts to oval shaped. The one on the left will be of a surveyor.....an important person when trying to build a brand new city. I'm not sure yet on the other one. I'll finished up the school house square today and then start to finish up the surrounding frame and add the 'Lake Worth' lettering at the top. I want to get this part finished before I have to remove it from the wall. I'll be laying it on the floor so I can line up the bottom section that has to be added and sketch on the design........the ceilings aren't high enough to get all the pieces together on the wall. Once I've got it started I can hang parts back up so its easier to work on.
Well, there's that bit done. I'm sure I'll be tweaking things as I go along, but for now its on to the next block.

ROAD TRIP!

Moving right along........
This is some slow and tedious work I've chosen. Hope to finish up this section today!

This is exciting.....I'm heading back up to Philly as soon as I close up the shop in two weeks. I'm going up to paint some high end childrens beds for a company I've painted for before. I'm excited for a few weeks of steady work, and a chance to visit with my northern friends, it'll be nice to get away and it will be a good way to let go of the shop/studio.
Today's progress on the exterior mural......slowly but surely.
And I may have sold a couple more pieces of furniture...I'll know tomorrow.
So I haven't seen any unusual activity around the condo building so I guess I didn't win this years HGTV dream house, darn! I was going to turn it into the most fabulous bed & breakfast!

Back to the studio today to work on the mural and open the doors to try to sell off the rest of the furniture.
I've been offered an opportunity to go back up to Philly for a couple of weeks to paint a few high end childrens beds, and if our schedules don't conflict I will go. I've done work for this company before, sweetdreambed . It would be right at the end of this month, and I still need to close up things here first. It'd be great to go back again, see old friends, scope out the job scene maybe. And I'd love to take some day trips out to the country to scour some flea markets and thrift shops :-).

I saw this link on the Better After blog last night and thought I'd try it out. Its a new listing site Krrb that aims to make things more community oriented.....like craigslist, but with a more fuzzy feeling I guess. This one is not totally free, but you do earn 'credits' just by joining...one credit equals one posting or re-listing. The site wasn't that easy to follow as far as trying to figure out how it works, but its new. One personal opinion so far....the creator should change his avatar, its a bit scary looking, he looks crazed...maybe from all that's involved in starting up a new site lol. Anyway, I'll be the first in my area to give it a try, so I don't expect much action from it right away, but ya gotta start somewhere right?

Off I go. Have a great weekend everybody.
At last.
Well dang!......it wasn't the last day, but today will be :-)
I've got the blocks taped out and ready to be done so that bit should go pretty quickly. Then there's just the space under the table, adding some reflection in the window/shutter, adding some barely visible grout lines behind/between the barrels, and cleaning up and little areas that need it.
Today should be my last day on this project......
Then its back into the studio to resume work on the exterior mural....(after a day or two off;-)
Yesterdays progress. Today I'm hoping to get the other wall done, that will leave just the ceiling and the wall space above the barrels to do....and oh yeah, that bit behind the table and any last minute tweaks.
I started bringing things home from the studio yesterday, tools I know I won't be using there. When I got home I found I had an email from one of the owners of the property. He was telling me that the new tenant may want to use the Lake Worth themed mural I'm creating for him for the outside of the building to incorporate some of her own thoughts and ideas........sorry? excuse me? say what?? That idea didn't go over very well with me. The mural was my way of thanking the owners for letting me use the space (rent free).....and it was an opportunity for me to create what I hoped would be a meaningful piece of art about and for the city. Since I'm not that far into the work yet I offered to abort the project so that she could use the panels to express her own thoughts and ideas.
I already graciously supported the new tenants next door when they wanted to(and did) paint out the mural work I had done for the girls just a few months ago, but please don't ask me to do this again. It already smarts that even rent free I couldn't make the shop work and to ask me to use my talents to help promote the next tenant..........well........here I stand boldly stating (and with only a thimble full of shame), I'm not that big a person.....its a bit like rubbing salt in the wound.
On a brighter note this cabinet finally found its new home........
A dad stopped in the shop yesterday and claimed this for his daughter. And since next week she will be celebrating her sixth birthday I gifted them the china tea set I had just put aside to bring home.
See, I'm not a bad person really. On his way out the door the dad told me his mother, who makes pillows for shops, had recently lost the artist she would use for some of her projects and would I be interested.......of course I'll be happy to talk with her :-)
Well, this is going to take longer than I thought. Yesterday I finished the wine bottle, added a cork, and a glass of wine.....I still need to add another glass.....oops, the bottom of my glass looks a bit wonky, need to fix that!
Then I turned my attention to the wine barrels, curious to see how long they would take and how they would look......oiy. It took awhile just to get these four done, I'm just hoping the rest will now go a bit easier. I was really worried about how these were going to look from outside the doorway, but I think they'll be ok.......especially since wine racks will be hanging in front of them.
And damn....that bit of wall under the table is screaming at me to be repainted to match the block color, so I'll add that to the list.
Thankfully the barrels are not going to go all the way up the wall, only stacked four high. Above that will be more 'block' wall. I'll paint it to look as though the barrels are tucked under the block, recessed into the wall, you'll see a bit of the underneath of the blocks. Then the ceiling. I'll be back on this on Monday.
Today, its back into the shop to hopefully sell off more of the furniture before closing the shop. Its really going quite well, only a dozen or so pieces left. I'm actually kind of hoping the hutch doesn't sell, I'd love to bring it home....although where to put it might be an issue.I'm pretty surprised that no ones bought it. It was originally priced at $325 and is now half off.....amazing. Maybe I'll just bring her home, I really love this piece.
I started working on a mural job yesterday and I was so disappointed with how it started that I didn't want to post the days progress picture, but now that I've fixed it on day two I can show you what happened.
Its really true that if you don't keep your skills up you're going to stumble, and I did.
The color was all wrong......the blocks were too small making it look too busy and institutional.....
This is the area getting painted. It will have wine barrels stacked on the side walls and a vineyard view with table and wine bottle/glasses.
This is the sketch I did for the 'view' wall.......
Here's what happened on day one..............(how embarrassing)

And here's the end of day two..............still not finished, but waaaay better.
That's a 'wood' beam on the top that will help tie the ceiling in....the client wants the ceiling to look like wood. I'll finish this wall up tomorrow morning and start on the side walls with the wine barrels.

I heard from the newest pet portrait winner, Monica, and got the picture of the pet she wants painted. This is going to be fun!
Well shoot!! After I posted this I realized I forgot to pick the next pet portrait winner! Dang!
Ok, I include everyone who posted a comment (except me of course:-) so with a one out of four chance (can't beat those odds).........and.........using random.org, the winner is..............#1, Monica. Email me your info and pics Monica and congrats.

Well, I haven't touched the exterior mural since I posted last and it will be on hold for another week which really puts some pressure on if I want/need it done by the end of the month.
I've been working on a canvas painting for someone, just a simple graphic sort of beach scene. She'll be using it to just brighten up a space and cover up a board that's covering something else. I'll post it later, my camera battery was dead.
I also had to repaint a chest for someone.....the white desk/chest with the black design on the front that everyone who sees it loves, but its been in the shop forever. It's now a deep red, and I painted around the design to preserve it. I needed to stain the design though to tone it down against the deep red. The red is to go with the Moroccan theme she's creating in her bedroom.
I start a five day mural project tomorrow.....I am SO excited. Its been a long time since I've painted a beautiful mural in a beautiful home....I can't wait.
Its a tiny space, but will have a lot of detail. This is the area that will be painted.......
And this is part of what I'll be doing......
The client is turning this space into a wine cellar (for lack of a better title). He'll be hanging racks on the side walls similar to this, but only about 4 or 5 feet wide......
He wants stacked wine barrels painted on the side walls and a rustic looking wood ceiling. My first instinct was to do a rustic rock wall on the sides because the wine will be hiding most of the work but the client seems set on the barrels. The back wall he wants a window looking out on a vineyard scene, and that wall to look like marbled stone, then a simple table with a wine bottle and glasses on it.
I'm making that wall look like a small recessed area because I didn't want to deal with the baseboard (and I love doing trompe l'oeil work :-).
The shop is slowly but surely emptying out, everything is now 50% off (ouch). And because of the sales and the mural job I feel like I can breath....at least for another month or two :-)
Once I finish this mural I can get back to, and focus on, finishing the exterior mural.