I am privileged to have lots of creative friends. And even though I link to most of them on the index (over on the right), I thought I'd mention them all within the one post. You can consider it a kind of small Yellow Pages for talent.
He is a photorealist artist. I actually quite like this genre; I admire the intense skill and mad folly that go into painstakingly producing a painting that could easily be substituted for a photograph that would have taken an untrained civilian a split-second to create with the cheapest of cameras.
I always forget just how much disruption can be caused by the seemingly simple task of decorating a modest-sized bedroom in a mid-terrace house. I guess part of my surprise is that I didn't factor in that the change of use (spare bedroom to nursery) probably triples the amount of work involved. Although I wasn't completely in the dark about the task-list, I recall absent-mindedly thinking that a lick of paint on the walls and a spot of furniture self-assembly and we'd be done.
But no, it is not that easy. Painting has taken all week, and there's still the door to do. I'm grateful to Andrew for helping me shift some big furniture from the main bedroom. And timescales for converting a built-in cupboard on one side of the chimney breast had to be extended after tentative attempts to remove some textured wallpaper revealed a far from smooth wall underneath. I'm still confident that a big push this weekend should see us largely finished by Sunday evening. Only the job of paining the mural will remain outstanding.
As work has slowly but steadily progressed, so the chaos has accumulated around the house. There are piles of clothes in the bedroom, a workbench in the computer room, step ladders in the bathroom, an ex-cupboard on the stairs, a dismantled wardrobe in the lounge. Only the kitchen seems to have escaped relatively lightly.
Our two new bedroom wardrobes are due to be delivered today. No time has been specified, which leaves the possibility open that it will inconveniently arrive in the evening. They are larger than the ones we have now and so will take some construction.
Last night's attempt to dismantle a wardrobe we no longer want went wrong. The problem was that I bought it around five years ago from the Ikea bargain corner, and it was delivered to me fully constructed. Thus, I wasn't 100% certain how the thing was held together. Nevertheless I managed to reduce it to the base, but I couldn't quite work out how to remove the three large upright panels. Just as I figured this out and set about struggling with an allan key, the base split, rendering the whole thing useless. Annoyingly, I had already added the thing to Freecycle.