Tuesday, July 27, 2010
A year before the trolley mural was even a hint of an idea, the one who commissioned me to do this work had a vision of what this should look like. It is a drawing of him looking out to see the trolley as it was coming into town. He is the little boy in the drawing and he remembers standing there watching it with the whirling sound that an electric train would make. It was in 1933 and he liked going into the garden to watch the show.
The actual resource picture that I had was a small 3 by 4 inch photo, not clear and it was lacking contrast and detail. The rest was left to my knowledge of what I see when I look across my west side of the house across the field. It is the same field, but the photo is south a few hundred yards. The little boy is actually his own son standing out in the yard looking towards a train going by his house.
A year later, he and his friend thought of the idea to have a mural painted. That trolley was to represent the earlier years around 1906 when the route was first established. The little boy represented in the photo is the older gentleman below in the photo with me installing the mural. Russ is his name and he and I can talk history back and forth until the cows come home. I really enjoy his friendship.
Thursday, July 22, 2010
My wife and I returned to the depot one last time to install a couple of strips of oak trim. The wall was not square and the top and bottom showed that, so we put on a trim to cover the gaps. The older gentleman is Russ who commissioned the work of my wife and me with the towns money. I later returned and washed windows in a large part of the building trying to bring it up to spec for Saturday's viewing and the town celebration. We had been away from it for about a week and we were pleased with our results when we saw it again.
Sunday, July 18, 2010
Lake Michigan, watercolor, 1989
My wife and I have a framing business that we are trying to close down. When we don't want to make a 30 mile trip to pick up glass, when we are on a deadline, we will salvage glass off of framed work of the past.
This watercolor was painted back in 1989 when my wife and I took an artist painters tour around Lake Superior and down the side of the east side of Lake Michigan. This painting was done on the shore of the lake and then was reworked in the studio. My skills of watercolor have improved a lot since them but I find it still and interesting rendition.
Shovel Point, Lake Superior North Shore, oil pastel
This has no date on it but it is about 10 years old, as was painted on the rocky shore of Superior. The formation is wonderful with varied colors and textures. I really like to work in oil pastel as it is more like working with an oil stick. This is a beautiful location but one has to hike down a steep hill to get to the sight. The shovel point area is also a great hike one can take that follows that incline to the shore.
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
I have to return and put in two molding pieces top and bottom to cover the edges. I will need to dust it off and then spray it one more time, for the last time, with kamar varnish. It has been a successful project and we are very pleased with it.
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Friday, July 9, 2010
Friday, July 2, 2010
Here is a sneak peek of the restored 1906 depot here in Woodward. The trolley system extended to downtown Des Moines and it is written that they had a trolley make seven trips a day. I have posted parts of the mural on the net before but really don't want to show you much until it gets in a more completed state.
Here is a early preliminary view of it as we have added so many things since this was photographed. The can and box are there to give us an idea of what things should look like if we painting things into the foreground. It will be a mural on the inside of the building and it is to appear that you are looking out to see the trolley is waiting for yourself to get on board.
We did change the windows from the sketch below as both of the trolley's had different window treatments. We have a photo of the windows with the curved portion above the two windows and the trolley is sitting at the depot in Woodward. More to come.