For the past few weeks I have been working on a large scale project, helping to transform some rooms in a turn-of-the-century mill building into workable photography suites for Boston Studio Photography West. Using primarily cast-offs, craigslist and antique shop finds-including some “barn finds”, we have been slowly transforming rooms filled with pieces of furniture that will be used as photography props.
Dressing a set for photography is much different than designing a room in a home. The design principles are the same: you define the style of the space, like the victorian parlor above, then you paint the walls, add furnishings and draperies and accessorize. In this case, we are sort of working backwards, using available furniture pieces as the inspiration and designing around them.
Each suite is being styled in a different genre and era based mainly on the furniture available to us, so we are pairing together, then transforming chairs, tables, beds and lamps so that they work harmoniously to achieve an overall “look”. Perfection doesn’t matter to a photographer-photoshop takes care of that. Illusion is what we are after. This powder room chair before: red and yellow floral brocade with a blonde wood frame that had an almost plastic appearance.
For the frame, I mixed artist’s gold metallic acrylic paint with some darker gold craft paint along with some metallic spray paint in my tray, but didn’t blend it completely.
Brushed it on, heavily in some areas and more sparingly in others. The effect I was going for was glam but worn. For the cushions, I used regular black acrylic craft paint (2 for $1 at AC Moore : ), mixed with Plaid Enterprises Textile Medium.
This is a thinner that helps the paint absorb into the fabric rather than just sitting on top, so the fabric texture remains soft to the touch. The piece is transformed, not only to the eye, but for the camera as well. Perfect for our new powder room installation. Will keep you posted on the changes as we move along. Have a SUPER SUNDAY everyone- and since the Pats are not playing…go 49’ers!!! Susan