Painting and Decorating Made Easier!

Posts tagged ‘Hospitals’

Surviving a Hotel or Hospital Property Sale

The rumor mill has been grinding out “guess whats” for weeks. The “hotel” or “hospital” where you work is up for sale.


The order comes down, straight from the top.6uT


‘Be on your best behavior.”  “Keep this place running smoothly.”  “Keep your mouth shut.”

“You never know who might be watching – or standing in front of you.”


“Don’t blow it!”


Then you hear that the strangers walking around are prospective buyers.


“Keep on your toes. Stay alert.”


For weeks… months, the staff sees a steady stream of serious buyers canvassing the property.

“Be extra courteous and hospitable,” management team tells everyone.


The stream of prospects reduces to a trickle. It might even stop altogether. Or so it seems.


Then the big guys show up. With their cameras, webcams, custom-apped smartphones, tape measures, calculators, etc. It appears that they’re walking around every foot of the place. Staff spots them everywhere. Even in secured, private areas.


Things quiet down again. You see a handful of the same people moving around the property. Checking things out very carefully, several times. The rumor mill shuts down.


Word leaks out: The property has been sold. The G.M. confirms it. An announcement to all staff includes the name or names of the new owner/owners, and their take-over date.


All this while you’ve needed to get your work done.

A lull hits the entire organization. An eerie type of mourning engulfs the place. A very brief time is allowed for everyone to accept the news.


The transition work begins for everyone.


You – and probably everyone else on staff – start asking the same questions:


  1. What are the new company’s policies and rules?
  2. What are the new company’s practices that every staff member is expected to follow, effective immediately?
  3. What are the new company’s policies, rules and practices specifically aimed at your department? For your job as “Painter”?
  4. What kind of help will be available if you run into any problem trying to work under the new system?
  5. How long do you get to make the transition?
  6. Is your job at risk? How long do you have?


Usually, change takes place very quickly, when a hotel or hospital property is sold.


They “clean house” thoroughly. Bodies are moved out at sometimes a shockingly fast speed. And, heads roll.


The chain of command may change. Management may change drastically.


For those staff members left, job descriptions change and switch. Work shifts and schedules may change. Pay scales, dress codes and benefit packages will probably change.


New owners, new managers, new game.


Surviving the sale many not be your call. Surviving may, or may not, be what you think.


 A few tips for surviving the sale of your workplace


  1. Promptly start getting ready for whatever may be coming down, at the first hint of a possible change of hands.
  2. “Keep your nose clean,” as my father once advised.
  3. “Zip your lip,” as my grandfather used to say.
  4. “Prepare for every possible scenario that may affect you,” as I’m suggesting via this blog.


Final note: Some property sales move silently and swiftly. No signs. No rumors. No strange visitors milling around. No news!

Surviving the sale of your work property comes down to your self-preservation skills, and attitude.

Thanks for following “Painting with Bob.”

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

Designing with Graphics Using Paint

What can you do to liven up a wall? Create a graphics design using paint. One reason: to exhibit a sense of creativity in an otherwise bland environment. This applies to wall surfaces, in particular.


To achieve a sense of creativity, we can use color and geometry. Go figure.


Any substrate can be used as a base, and also as a constructive element to make the actual design. One example being: an interior brick wall with sections of precut gypsum board installed on its face, designed in the shape of a company logo or picture.


How to use paint as a factor for design.


Paint can achieve any number of designs, and account for a wide range of color combinations.
1. Study a color chart from a paint supplier or manufacturer.
2. Select colors that you like and will complement or contrast the existing colors.


3. Create a paper sketch of the wall surface and your particular graphic display.


4. Here is where the detail-work starts.

A. Measure dimensions of wall.

B. Transfer them, according to scale, onto your preliminary sketch.

TIP: Gridded paper works great for this. Or, use a graphics design software program, and a laser measuring tool if you’re so inclined.


5. When laying out graphics prior to painting, I recommend the following items:

A. easy release or automotive masking tape,

B. chalk box for snapping lines,

C. geometric templates to create accurate curves and contours,

D. 2” square and 2 ½ “angular paint brushes,

E. liquid spray mask for covering non-painted areas,

F. 4” low nap roller frame/cover.


6. Let’s say you want to create a horizontal 6-stripe pattern. Transfer measurements from diagram to wall surface marking the width and length of the stripes. Mask off lines 1,3, and 5.


7. Paint spaces in an alternate type configuration. Going back to the 6-stripe pattern.

A. Paint lines 1, 3, and 5. Let dry overnight.

B. Mask off lines 2, 4, and 6. Be sure to press down edges of tape.

C. Paint lines 2, 4, and 6.


TIP: When you have a design with shared border lines, paint shapes that do not touch each other. It’s common sense stuff, and helps ensure straight lines.


TIP: When painting graphics always allow the proper drying time for each phase.


Creating graphics using  paint opens an astounding panorama of choices. As breathtaking and awesome as a sunset in motion!


Look for: Designing with Graphics Using Wallcoverings.



Have a great October 31, folks!  And, thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob.”


Copyright 2015.  Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

Painting It: Classic Marbleizing

Marble Faux Finished Lamp Table

The Marble finish represents the finest decorative application that can be achieved. In the 18th century, the artist guilds throughout Europe studied and simulated the wide varieties of quarried stone for the purpose of interior design.


Today, faux marble has been recognized as the most creative style to master. It is one of the most fascinating decorative forms to learn and apply.


Here are some recommended fundamental skills and tools of the trade to use for marbleizing.



  1. Ability to perceive depth in three dimensions.
  2. Sensitive flexible touch.
  3. Sense of applying realism to a simulated form.
  4. Ability to combine random transparent textures.
  5. Ability to apply a variety of finishes using a variety of application methods.



  1. Badger Hair blending brush, 3 or 4 inch          7. Sea sponges, small and larg
  2. Bright brush, # 7 or # 8                                        8. Goose feather
  3. Chiqueteur brush (special/optional)                  9. Cheesecloth
  4. Filbert brush, #1 and #2                                       10. Newspaper
  5. Flat brush, #10 or #12                                           11. Tack rags (2+)
  6. Spalter brush, 3 or 4 inch




Marbleizing simply means a “simulation of marble.” And, it is done by replicating the same elements of composition, which are found inside the actual Marble itself.


You see it with your eyes, visualize it and reproduce it on the surface you have selected.




  1. The surface needs to be smooth and blemish free. Sand and patch accordingly – #120, then #220.
  2. Apply a suitable primer, using a low nap roller cover. When dry, sand surface smooth.
  3. Apply a basecoat, which has the appropriate background color of the genuine Marble.
  4. Sand the surface smooth with #320, then #400 sandpaper.
  5. Apply the first glaze color with a sponge, creating a wide criss-cross pattern. Blend into the surrounding basecoat, leaving random darkened areas.
  6. Apply the second glaze color with a sponge, overlapping the first application. Blend randomly. Leave some areas more heavily textured and other areas less textured.
  7. Mix the glaze color for the veins. Use a Sable Liner brush to create veins in random vertical and  irregular horizontal configuration. Blend edges of veins randomly.
  8. Mix a dark color glaze. Use a small and stiff Flat brush – eg. #8 or #10 – to finely splatter the surface in random locations.
  9. Apply a clear coat varnish or polyurethane to the surface, using a Spalter brush or a low nap roller. When dry, sand the surface with #400 sandpaper.
  10. Tack rag, and reapply a finish coat.


Note: The steps and tools to be used vary, depending on the type of Marble that you are trying to simulate.




  1. Glazes can be applied using either latex or oil based products.
  2. Keep tools and brushes clean.
  3. Always maintain a flexible approach and view when applying a decorative finish.
  4. Sand surfaces between each coat, when an ultra smooth surface is desired.
  5. Mask and cover all areas not to be finished.


SKILLS TIP:  When in doubt about your skills, test them. Make up several sample boards.


DECORATING TIP: Think creatively, and perceptively.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

SPRING into action. MARBLEIZE something!   Thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Copyright 2015. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

Painting It: Skylights

As a natural source of light, a skylight is often overlooked as an area to be maintained and painted. Parts of it are exposed to the elements. Thus, keeping it weather tight is a priority in order to prevent damage to interior surfaces.


The skylight is also an element of design and a diverse use for color. “How is that,” you ask?


I once worked in a single level office building, where skylights were used to provide most of the interior light. My role was to paint these areas using a combination of hues to give the skylights an optical colored shading effect. Also, from different angles, the colors appeared to change. This occurred due to the changing intensity of the light.


Encorporating this effect into your own home is a possibility as well. Once again it will be your creativity that will be your guide.


Before you begin to paint, make certain that the following guidelines are observed:


  1. Make sure the skylight is sealed properly. Caulk if necessary.
  2. Clean the surface, removing any mold.
  3. Repair any cracks or loose paint.
  4. Use stain blocking primer to seal in the areas.
  5. Sand the entire surface for finish painting.
  6. Select either latex or oil based paint as your finish.
  7. Exposure to higher temperatures may require a more durable finish.


To paint a skylight, here are several options:


  1. Apply a color and sheen, which “matches” the surrounding ceiling area.
  2. Apply a color and sheen, which “differs from the surrounding ceiling area.
  3. Apply a bright color and glossy sheen, which “attracts” one’s attention.
  4. If the skylight is sizeable, apply multiple colors and sheens to create a “decorative” design.


Painting a skylight can be basic. You can match the white of your ceiling. Or, it can be a creative project. When it is completed, it complements any living space or an office.


Remember, a skylight can show off more than just the light. It can show off the colors in the area.


It can accentuate the appearance and function of the area. It can enhance the amenities of the hotel, hospital, or business.


And, it can lift the spirit of everyone that passes underneath its “spell. Something that natural light – sunlight – tends to do for persons of all ages. Our pets, too!


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Thank you for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

Hospital Painting and Decorating: Questions and Answers

1. What are three appealing, yet low cost, ways to revitalize the front lobby of the hospital?

A. Clean all surfaces.

B. On clear-finished wood surfaces, apply a new coat of varnish, or polyurethane finish.

C. Create small areas using accent paint of contrasting colors.

2. Keeping the walls in a very active pediatrics wing/area looking great can be a big challenge for the staff painter(s). Any surface treating suggestions?

If the walls are not tiled, I would suggest applying a high gloss enamel or epoxy for durability, and increased brightness.

3. What paint products hold up best on surfaces frequently exposed to cart and gurney slams, crashes, scrapes, etc.?

There really are no “best” paint products to use. Even a hardened urethane finish will not withstand the contact with moving metal objects. A clear plastic laminate is suggestion, however.

4. The general patient rooms in our small hospital need a facelift, and we can’t afford it right now. What can we do?

One easy and inexpensive method is to apply a painted border to the walls of each room, or to one accent wall. Multi-colors can be used to create a fresh look, and to blend one area/space with an adjacent one (eg. corridor).

5. Keeping the surfaces of public areas – eg. restrooms – neat in low-budget hospitals and clinics can be a major challenge. Any suggestions?

Many areas are tiled. So, this limits what can be done. Sometimes, the only thing that can be done is to clean, then paint the ceiling. Preferably with a high gloss finish with greater washability.

6. Graffiti has become a problem with certain, less used exterior areas on our hospital campus. Any ideas?

There is little deterrence for delinquency. As it occurs, if it is a hard surface, it can be sandblasted, or removed with paint remover. In many instances, the graffiti-area can be touched up with paint which correctly matches the immediate and surrounding surfaces.

7. The front desk areas in many departments look unappealing – to employees, patients, doctors, etc. People-wise, it’s a “must do.” Budget-wise, it’s a “How can we afford to do this?”

You can afford to do this if you look first at what’s already available to use. It might be time to clean out the paint shop-related storeroom(s). You’ll be amazed by what you find there. Also, this is a great time to employ the creativity of a few interested staff members.

8. Places like the doctors’ lounge need an upgrade. Is there any cost-effective way to get this done? How do we keep our doctors happy – and stay within our budget? 

A. I would ask the doctors for any ideas they have.

B. Then, choose what’s most affordable, and time-sensitive.

C. A repaint is easy. It’s less expensive than wallcovering, which can be very decorative.

D. A wallpaper border or stenciling can be applied over the finish-painted walls.

 9. Our nurses’ stations are a let down. What can our staff painter(s) do to “face lift” these areas, and “uplift” our nurses’ moral?

Including desks and cabinets, there’s not a whole lot that can be done. Whatever space is available, consider a finish product and effect that is decorative – eg. sponge or colored texture.

10. Some of the hospital’s lifeblood work areas could use a little lift, to show support for the employees that work so hard there, behind the scenes. Any creative and cost-effective ideas for our painter(s)?

Usually, painters are not the ones who are given the choice to utilize their creativity in decorating such areas. Even though their suggestions tend to be both professional and simpatico. Many scientific studies have been conducted about hospital décor and color choices. Forget most of these. Ask the people who actually work in these areas. They’ll appreciate the gesture.

11. Re: What patient room bathroom colors and hues stay looking good, and are both soothing and pleasing to the eyes of ill persons, often under a lot of stress – and fear?

Light color earthtones with pastel accent are the easiest on the eyes. Neutral colors alone, especially of one hue or shade, can be boring. Try using one bright color to create an accent wall.

12. What wallcoverings hold up, and are still relatively affordable?

A. The most durable wallcoverings are also the most expensive.

B. There are select wallpapers which have a clear plastic coating on them. This finish increases product lifespan and wearability. And, these products are quite affordable.

C. Generally, wallpapers, which cost less, will not hold up to light effects, repeated cleanings, and multiple repairs. Also, they can turn slightly yellow over time.

D. You will get the most out of your money with a commercial grade vinyl. That’s why they are used predominantly in business construction applications. And, yes, it carries a higher price tag.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Thank you for visiting. I hope that your projects run smoothly – and safely.

Tag Cloud