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Painting It: An Author’s Painter – and Movie Sets

An author’s greatest reward can be seeing one of his or her novels reach the big screen.

A handful of novelists have had more than three of their works turned into a full-feature film.
Few of these novelists write the screenplay version of their novels. More of them do, these days, serve as technical consultants during the filming of their stories.

Earlier this year, one of these prolific authors of popular film stories got his house painter and decorator a job as a painter on the set of a movie.

Let’s call him “Joel.” The man mixed and matched the paints. Then he painted the movie set’s exterior buildings, store fronts and related areas; also the interiors of many sets. It was meant to be a very temporary gig.

Three-and-a-half weeks into the project, the construction crew’s lead painter was in an accident, and couldn’t work. “Joel,” the temporary set painter, who was a seasoned commercial painter and decorator, was put into the lead job.

At the end of filming, the author came along. He offered the temporary painter a full-time, steady job as a movie set painter. Particularly the sets of the author’s film projects. And, this author always tends to have one of his novels heading for or already on a movie set somewhere.

“It was a lot of fun,” my old painter friend told me while visiting in Florida in early July. “Being around all that action… some great actors… very talented, skilled craftspersons and artisans. That was great.”

The man’s eyes dropped to the paint color chips in my hand. And the two, 5-gallon buckets of paint at my feet.

“This,” he pointed around the paint store, “is me.” Then, he grabbed one of the heavy paint buckets and walked out to my ‘87 Chevy Blazer. The subject of movie-set painting closed!

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The mark of a real pro is often the little things that he does, and the big decisions he makes, along his way.
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Thanks to all readers and followers – visible and hidden – of “Painting with Bob.”

Copyright 2017. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

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Painting Questions, Quotes, and Quips – Part 1

QUESTIONS:

1. What constitutes a “source” that must be credited in any future use?

Answer: According to U.S. Trademark, Patent, and Copyright Law, the original source of a concept, design, prototype, photograph, imprint, illustration, artwork, literary work, etc. must be listed whenever and wherever the item is used. That includes when the re-user has written permission from the originator, or legal representative, to use the material.

2. How should the original source be credited?

Answer: The originator’s required, usually brief, format must be used.
Example: Name of person, name of studio/company/publication, title of work, copyright date/year.

3. How necessary is it for any re-user of an original work to get written permission to use the work or material?

Answer: It is essential, especially whereas we live in a period of widespread misuse, pirating, fraud, plagiarism, identity theft, etc. Whenever, wherever, and how you use someone else’s material for “personal and/or financial gain…”

QUOTES:

I was checking on possible LinkedIn connections to specific persons connected to the technical services of a leading paint products manufacturer. Sure enough. At least two were there. Then, I checked on the manufacturer’s informational website for painting contractors. There, I found the same persons credited as the writers and/or editors of articles.

Immediately, I noticed that many of the articles’ topics and titles, organization, contents, and both wordage and phraseology were very familiar. Say, from this “Painting with Bob” blog. “All posts “copyright” protected. “All rights reserved.” Meaning no re-use, reproduction, reprinting, etc. without written permission of the author, or his/her legal representative.

QUIPS:

A first year journalism student landed an entry-level, Friday night job on The Indiana Daily Student, Indiana University’s newspaper.

Assignment 1: Pick up the reporters’ wads of yellow printer’s paper laying around their desks.

Assignment 2: Grab a chair next to any working reporter. Then read each page of copy as it comes out of the typewriter.

Assignment 3: Check that WHO, WHAT, WHEN, WHERE, and HOW – and even WHY – have been covered within the first two paragraphs of the reporter’s story.

Assignment 4: “Red-pen” circle every error in punctuation, spelling, grammar, word use, word order, typing, etc.

Assignment 5: Check all quotes for accuracy, and that the following match those written in the reporter’s notebook: interviewee’s full name, title and affiliation; exact words stated and in order, beginning and ending quotation marks, date, place and occasion of interview.

Assignment 6: Warning: “No mistakes allowed,” said Dr. F.A., dean of the School of Journalism, Indiana University. “If you can’t cut it on the floor, you can’t cut it at the desk.”

Closing observation: The paint manufacturer’s writers and editors did a good job on those painting tips articles for the contractors’ publication. They got the facts straight. And, their paraphrasing was reasonably accurate.

So… I let two area Sherwin-Williams friends treat me to lunch, and compare notes about an experimental coating for exterior surfaces such as high-exposure steel fencing.

CLOSING TIP:
Always give credit where credit is due!

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Trademark, Patent and Copyright Laws are here to protect everyone – including painters!
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Thanks to all visible or hidden readers, followers, and paraphrasers of “Painting with Bob.”

Copyright 2017. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

Four Unusual Guest Rooms in Un-ordinary Locations

1. FOCAL POINT: Red iridescent 1967 Mustang life-size mural. Air-brushed and hand-painted on 42-foot north wall.

Lodging type: Private inn with 8 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms.
Structure: Former Amish farm house.
Location: Northeast Indiana.
Room’s description: Third floor attic suite. Dimensions: 24-feet wide by 42 feet long.
Light source: Two dormers on front and back sides, one on each end.
Floor: Smooth-planed, tongue and groove hardwood. Note: more than 130 years old.
Walls: Drywall. Finish: White Snowfall, Color No. SW 6000 semi-gloss latex.
Ceiling: Drywall. Finish: Two layers of clear faux glaze over white flat base coat.
Paint products manufacturers: Sherwin-Williams; also Liquitex Acrylic Artist Paints.

2. FOCAL POINT: Panoramic re-creation of rare books reading room in Newberry Collectors Library, Chicago. Custom wallpaper mural wraps around 32-feet north and 22-feet east walls.

Lodging type: Hostel catering to travelers ages 60 and over; 8 bedrooms, each sleeping 7-8.
Structure: Abandoned industrial warehouse.
Location: West side of Chicago.
Room’s description: Second floor. Dimensions: 32-feet by 22-feet.
Light sources: 4 large, 18-paned steel-framed swing-hinged windows.
Floors: Wall-to-wall commercial grade carpeting over hardwood. Pattern: Salt-n-Pepper-neutrals.
Walls: 3 – Bare concrete block, smooth floated. Finish: Stain: Softer Tan, Color no. SW 6141.
Mural wall: Drywall installed, then white latex base coat rolled on two weeks before mural hung.
Ceiling: Dropped 18-inch frosted tiles, grid frames.
Furniture: Twin-sized bed foundations made from shortened oblong library tables; small reading tables became bedside/night stands.
Paint products manufacturer: H&C/S-W (concrete block walls); Drywall base coat.

Personal note: At age twelve, I visited the Newberry Library for the first time. Six years younger than the required minimum age of eighteen. I filled out a form requesting a book to read, I was seated at a table. A library concierge brought the volume, and placed it on a small table-top easel in front of me. She showed me how to turn the pages by using a special wand with felt tips. Note: All works had to be read there.

3. FOCAL POINT: Two Brown bear cubs in Wisconsin north woods scene. Life-size mural covers 24-feet long wall.

Lodging Type: Extended-stay family motel, that accommodates traumatic brain injured children.
Structure: Former two-story elementary school.
Location: North Appalachian Mountains.
Room description: First floor. Dimensions: 24-feet by 32-feet, part of 3-room suite plus bath.
Light source: Skylights.
Floors: Wall-to-wall commercial carpeting. Pattern: Houndstooth. Colors: Med-to-forest greens.
Walls: Smooth-floated plaster. Three walls painted Emerald Line: Cotton White, Color no: SW 7104, tinted with Byte Blue, Color no. SW 6498.
Ceilings: Dropped white pearl frosted acoustical tile squares set into flat white grid frames.
Paint product manufacturers: Sherwin-Williams; Liquitex Acrylic Artist Paints.

The Process: I installed the custom woodland mural onto the 18-feet by 32-feet wall facing south. Then I hand-painted and air-brushed both cubs into the foreground, using the designer’s template. By the way, the woods scene was a reproduction of a photo taken by the property owner. He was a freelance nature photographer for The National Geographic Society.

4. FOCAL POINT: View from the top of Jack’s Beanstalk. Hand and air-brush painted.

Lodging type: City inn.
Structure: Former 23-room luxury apartment.
Location: West Central Park, New York City
Room Dimensions: 15-feet by 26 feet
Light source: 2 tall adjacent windows overlooking the park.
Walls: Drywall. Painted white semi-gloss latex base coat; then two layers of faux stippling glaze: 1 part White Mint, color no: SW 6441, 3 parts Cotton White, color no. SW 7104, semi-gloss latex.
Ceilings: Popcorn texture, pin-dot effect. Paint: Cotton White, color no. SW 7104.
Paint products manufacturers: Behr’s; Grumbacher Acrylic Artist Paints.

The Process: A graphic designer sketched the Jack’s Beanstalk design on paper first. Then, a projector shot the image onto the wall. The same designer used colored chalk pencils to “trace” that image. Next, she used an air-brush spray system to paint the design. The painted mural was allowed to dry and settle for two days. Last, the artist sprayed on a fine coat of clear glaze mist.
THE EFFECT: Like looking through the clouds.
Paint products manufacturers: Glidden’s; Liquitex Low-Gloss acrylics.

Most painters and decorators envision the unusual and unique projects they’d like to have a hand in creating.

A Few Tips for Getting Started in Design-Mural Painting

1. Explore these outlets during your off days, and hours.
2. Decide which type of creative project really interests you.
3. Practice the special techniques required. If you can afford it, take a high-rated class at your local art school. Opt for a professional artist-instructor. Check out background, credits, awards.
4. Study recognized designers-muralists. Their backgrounds, styles, methods, paint selections.
5. To start out, you may want to work under an experienced creative painter/artist on one of his or her projects. Recommended: Help on your off time. Keep the day job.
6. When ready to “solo,” work on these special projects on the side. Start with simpler designs.
7. Leave your regular painting job behind only if and when you have a solid potential client and project base established. And, if and when you want to make that career change.

My view: Hand-painted murals are a gift to the surface… the atmosphere… the viewer!

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Thanks for being here on this planet. And, thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

Copyright 2017. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

The Painter, Franzen, and Church Restorations

“ ‘Margret clung to the side of the overturned wood row boat. Knowing that her grip could not last much longer. Knowing that she would not make it. And the enraged waters of the North Sea would swallow her.

 

“ ‘Then, she felt a powerful hand grab her arm, and force her frozen hand from the boat’s rim. Encircling her chest. Then pulling her backward. Into the churning waves. Was she, in fact, being washed away? Or drowning?’ ”

 

These were the opening words of the true account written by the victim’s oldest brother, Franzen, in an e-mail to me. A native of Amsterdam, the third cousin was a “restoration painter of churches.”

 

“That’s why I became a painter of holy buildings,” he wrote. “To give thanks to the priest that saved my baby sister over thirty-two years ago.”

 

At a later date, Franzen took me on a virtual tour of the church in Bratislava, Slovakia that he’s been working on. It is a small structure, compared to the grand cathedral projects that he has completed in Europe and Canada. And, it holds a significant place in the painter’s life, perhaps in mine also. The church is the home parish of a group of Haytovkas originally from old Austria.

 

“Presently, I sandblast the upper spires on the roof. There are twelve of them, representing the twelve apostles. I push to finish spray before the heavy snows come. It is dangerous part,” the painter emphasized. “So high from the ground, over 4419 cm (145 feet) up. One slip of the foot. I worry. Then I remember Margret. The arms that saved her…”

 

Franzen said the upper exterior of the church had not been touched in over forty years.

 

“The surfaces were pitted by thick, pebble-looking layers of grime and pollutants from the large manufacturing plant located less than 1.6 kilometers (one mile) away. Underneath, most of the paint was chipped off. Brass was badly tarnished, and coated with sea salts and bird droppings.

 

“It was in much worse condition than the church officials believed. Much removal and repair work…”

 

Franzen said that he has been doing restorative painting since age twenty-six. Previously, he worked for a contractor that repaired and redecorated older homes, apartment buildings, shops, and large flats. My cousin explained that most of the properties were “…owned by the rich.”

 

For two years prior, he “studied the painting craft” at a trade school run by the Netherlands government. He called the training very intense.

 

“This church will be my last high project. I will be fifty-nine in December. My feet are not quite as sure as they were. I make plans to retire at sixty. Muriel and I take Gordon to cottage by sea.”

 

By the way, Franzen and his wife are caregivers for their son Gordon (28). He has severe traumatic brain injuries from a work accident in 2009.

Something tells me that both Gordon and the historic church structure, built over 250 years ago, are in very good hands.

 

Point to Ponder: A true craftsman preserves the lives of impaired persons and old buildings with equal dedication and selflessness.

 

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Thank you for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

Copyright 2017. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

Painter’s View: A List of REAL Presidential Debate Issues

I watched part of the presidential debate televised on September 26. Fifteen minutes into this first face off between Hillary Rodham Clinton and Donald J. Trump, I knew that the real issues would not be discussed.

 

It had nothing to do with award-winning journalist Lester Holt’s moderating and pre-formulated questions for the candidates.

 

Here were some of the real issues, as I saw them…

 

  1. Health insurance companies sharply increasing basic premium rates yearly, while sharply decreasing life-saving coverage and benefits.
  2. Generic drug manufacturers sharply increasing prices and collaborating with prescription drug insurers, without being held liable, by the F.D.A., for product quality and safety as are brand name pharmaceuticals.
  3. Health insurance companies not being held liable for medical and pharmacological coverage and benefit decreases and discontinuations that cost loss of many lives.
  4. Health insurance companies that knowingly approve claims from large providers, with U. S. Department of Justice judgments against them for major “False Claims” fraud.
  5. Employer group health insurers that deny employees coverage and benefits when diagnosed with advanced stage or terminal illnesses or diseases.
  6. Vehicle insurers jacking up rates every 6-12 months, thus (a) penalizing drivers that obey Bureau of Motor Vehicle license and insurance laws, and (b) charging them for excessive claims’ costs they did not cause.
  7. Employers repeatedly violating EEOC and Department of Labor discrimination laws by adjusting job description and productivity requirements to enable them to disqualify skilled, experienced workers age 49 and over.
  8. Employers ignoring OSHA and EPA standards, thus causing employees to develop chronic, acute, and/or even terminal medical diseases or illnesses.
  9. Employers denying all employee hourly wage increases due to “budget cuts,” while sharply increasing managers’ salaries (and bonuses).
  10. Both employees’ hourly wage and salary merit raises, benefit increases and promotions.
  11. Business owners/employers that sell businesses and dissolve employee retirement accounts, transferring funds into private, owner-shareholder accounts.
  12. Federal government allocating and sending trillions of dollars overseas “for aid,” while taxpayers in the U. S. lose access to help, services and resources that they’ve paid for already.
  13. Utility and phone companies that indiscriminately add surcharges, taxes and other fees that are not regulated by the government, and thus must be paid by consumers.
  14. Local governments that set and increase budgets, then hide allocations and spending that sharply exceed budgets of municipalities of similar sizes and demographics.
  15. Companies not being held legally and financially liable, when (a) awarded huge tax incentives and property pre-improvements to locate within an area, then (b) either not locating there or not providing the number of new jobs as promised contractually.
  16. Federal and state governments’ regular removal of public school systems’ major funding, to pay for charter school systems’ management and operations.
  17. Physicians lack of accountability for treating medical symptoms, then medication adverse reactions, side effects and interactions, but not searching for and treating underlying cause(s) of symptoms and signs, thus causing costly ER visits and premature deaths.
  18. Local-level justice systems’ regular release of repeat felony drug trafficking offenders back onto the streets.

 

Like I said, these were, in my opinion, some of the real issues not discussed in the 2016 Presidential Debate No. 1.

 

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Debates can provide opportunities for exploring the depth of real issues in society.

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Thank you for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

 

Copyright 2016. Robert D. Hajtovik

Painter’s View: Olympic-Style Painting

Following the construction of competition sites for the 2016 Olympics in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, I got a free refresher course on specialty coatings.

 

Nearly every event’s set-up required the use of products custom engineered for the surface and area on which it was to be applied.

 

  1. Each event’s physical components required products that would withstand the type and level of exposure, and wear and tear, unique to that event.
  2. All products had to be safe for both the environment and the people, also non-toxic and suitable for the arid climate.
  3. Paint products had to be unusually durable, “colorfast” and water/sun/fade proof.
  4. Paint products had to be 100 percent tint/hue/shade accurate to the Olympic Committee’s color palette for that particular event and site.
  5. All paint products had to be 100 percent suitable for the event and site.
  6. All paint products needed to be aesthetically appealing, complementary to each other, and alluring to the spectators.
  7. All paint products needed to (a) cover their respective surfaces in the minimal number of coats; (b) dry fast to the touch; and (c) require industrial painting experience, but not highly specialized (thus costly) expertise.
  8. All paint products needed to require minimal surface prepping and fast, easy clean-up of the area and tools used there.

 

Watching the different events on TV, I looked for close-up camera shots. Peeks at the finished jobs of Rio‘s local painters and certified application specialists (CAS).

 

My post-Olympics objective via Linkedin.com: Connect with one or more Rio painters that had worked on the event sites. Question: Why hadn’t that crossed my mind during the 9-12 months actual construction time frame?

 

Question for the non-Olympics painters out there: What would you want to know from a Rio Olympics site painter?

 

 

13 – WELL, 14 – QUESTIONS I’M PLANNING TO ASK RIO OLYMPICS SITE PAINTERS

 

  1. What was your greatest enjoyment or pleasure in working on the Olympics project?
  2. What standard products – used on regular commercial and industrial projects – did you use on the Olympics project? In what areas mainly?
  3. What products caused you the greatest application challenges?
  4. What surfaces and areas were the hardest to coat?
  5. What weather problems did you run into? What was your longest down time?
  6. Previously, how many times had you used the specialty products that you used for the Olympics?
  7. What special tools and equipment did you need to use?
  8. What’s the largest quantity of paint that you applied on one event’s site?
  9. Were you under tight time constraints most of the time?
  10. With surfaces to be installed at outdoor event sites, what percentage of the prep and painting had to be done, say, inside a building?
  11. Would you work on an Olympics painting project again?
  12. What advice would you give to any painter looking at working on an Olympics site in 2020?
  13. How should he or she be preparing to handle the job right, and with minimal stress?

 

 

At this point, I don’t know what kind of success I’ll have connecting with a Rio Olympics painter. I’ve put out the word to a few well-known persons in the construction industry in the Rio area – and in Brazil. I’m hopeful.

 

Footnote: In the 1980s, Chicago planned to vie for the next Olympics games. Architect Norman DeHaan was serving on the committee that was coordinating those efforts. Among the groups that he enlisted was the Lake Michigan Region Planning Council (LMRPC). Its membership list read like the WHO’S WHO in architecture, design, engineering, and construction based in the Midwest.

 

At an LMRPC officers’ meeting held over 18 months out, he shared some facts about the greatest challenges facing Chicago’s Olympics planning committee. “Working with, and pleasing, so many special interest groups needed to pull off such an event. It’s mind boggling…”

 

Question 14 for the Rio Olympics painters: Was that how you felt, anticipating going into a painting project of such gigantic size?

 

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Special Olympics-style projects keep us on our toes and focused on top results!

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Thrive at working on whatever special project that you are on.

 

And, thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

 

Copyright 2016. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

Painting and Decorating: Working with Interior Designers – Part I

Painters that work on higher-end commercial and/or residential projects will deal with interior designers. At one point or another.

 

The projects where you will find an interior designer are as vast as the clients that own the properties:

  • 4-5 star hotels/resorts, upscale malls, restaurants, theatres, performance centers, boutique shops;
  • hospital systems, assisted living facilities, rehabilitation centers;
  • schools, government complexes, corporate headquarters;
  • high rise buildings, luxury homes, private estates, condominium developments, etc.

 

BACKGROUND THE INTERIOR DESIGNER ON PROJECT MAY POSSESS

 

  1. BFA/Interior Design; professional member: American Society of Interior Designers (ASID).
  2. BA/Interior Design; professional member: ASID, IIDA and/or IDS.
  3. BA or BS/Architectural Design; professional member: American Institute of Architects (AIA).
  4. BA/Interior Design or Art; member: International Interior Designer Association (IIDA).
  5. BA or BS/Fine Art or Furnishings Design; member: Design Society of America (DSA) and/or International Furnishings and Design Association (AFDA); affiliate member: AIA, ASID, IIDA.

 

Today, interior designers need at least a BA or BFA and both professional and trade credentials. Some also hold an MA or MS in Business Management, even Business/Corporate Law.

 

OTHER IMPORTANT FACTS ABOUT THE INTERIOR DESIGNER

 

  1. Some interior designers are accredited by the Council for Interior Designers (CID).
  2. More millennial designers are opting for accreditation from the newer Interior Design Society.
  3. Most accredited interior designers are members of more than one professional association.
  4. Most are members of at least two trade organizations, also related educational foundations.
  5. Many play an active, affiliate role in their clients’ industries and trade associations.
  6. A growing number of them are affiliated with product-specific manufacturer associations.

 

Nearly all interior designers that work on high-end projects possess extensive experience working with painters and decorators. The designers hold themselves to very high standards. And, they expect the painters, with whom they deal, to do the same. One hundred, or close to, one hundred percent of the time.

 

A few months ago, a professional member of ASID e-mailed. She’d had to insist that the painter on a project be replaced.

 

WHY PAINTER ON INTERIOR DESIGNER PROJECT MAY NEED TO BE REPLACED

 

  1. Personality conflict
  2. Substandard craftsmanship
  3. Mismatched skills and abilities-to-project needs
  4. “Authority” issues
  5. Client/customer conflict
  6. Time, budget and manpower limits
  7. Honesty and security issues
  8. Other reasons – eg. work environment

 

HOW A PAINTER CAN SECURE POSITION ON INTERIOR DESIGNER PROJECT

 

  1. Be yourself. Be honest. Be sincere. Be professional.
  2. Respect the interior designer’s role.

 

That said, also…

 

  1. Treat the designer with respect.
  2. When he or she is speaking to you, please listen. Try to tune out all distractions.
  3. Acknowledge what the designer is telling you – verbally, and with appropriate gestures.
  4. Answer his or her questions, when they are asked – and briefly as possible.
  5. Offer your view, when appropriate.
  6. Ask for his or her opinion, advice or input, as appropriate.
  7. Accept the interior designer’s input with grace.
  8. Hold back from pushing your knowledge or opinion upon the designer.
  9. Hang loose. Be flexile wherever and whenever you can.
  10. Show him or her that you recognize the problems that the project presents. Examples: Client, spatial, budget, deadlines, products/materials, deliveries, schedule.

 

The dynamics between the painter and the interior designer are unique, and curious. They tend to be challenging, and changeable. Two top benefits for each: a first-rate referral and trusted friend.

 

As an award-winning interior and furniture designer once told a group of students at Harrington Institute of Interior Design,

 

“One of your greatest collaborators on any project will be the painter and decorator. The person who executes the very foundations of your design: color, pattern, and texture.”

 

See blog: “Painting and Decorating: Working with Interior Designers – Part II”

 

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Thank you for visiting “Painting with Bob.”
Copyright 2016. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

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