Brushstrokes of genius
I am sitting in another favourite place, with a view of great beauty from the window, looking out over the lake at the Nature Discovery Centre in Thatcham for tomorrow’s Green Halloween. A wonderful variety of wildlife all living within yards of the lorry. How lucky am I? A warm log fire, food in the fridge and a good satellite signal for the tv for the Rugby World Cup final. Just back from a walk around the lake with the dogs and a moment to write about the newly finished painting on the lorry side.
I met Rob through a friend and we were instant friends. He is intelligent, funny and easy-going with a quiet, courteous manner. Just my sort of person. And a real genius with the paintbrush. At the beginning of the season he had completed about a dozen bricks on the left hand side of the lorry and various things conspired against him completing the job until last week. As the work then developed I could see what a great joy the end product was going to be. Rob is a extremely talented and has not only completely captured the brief but he has also enhanced it to such a great extent. I wanted the side to look like the back of the mansion town house my readers will know already graces the right hand side of the lorry. Except I wanted it to be the back of a run-down tenement, so the whole lorry would be a little visual joke that onlookers would only see by walking all around it.
Rob has achieved that and more. His trompe l’oeil painting of a brick built tenement with all sorts of wonderful things hanging off and living on the walls is a superb visual delight. He has also painted the rear of the lorry where the two pictures meet and whether you look from the posh or the down side there is no conflict. It is clever and funny and I am so happy with the result. It is popular art of a very high calibre.
I have included a photo of it from the new side.
He has also added a range of creatures to the picture. In total
· A tortoise
· A hedgehog
· A rat
· Two snails
· A spider
· A butterfly
· A worm and
· Seven ladybirds
adorn the ivy and the planting. So I have a lovely challenge to children (and the child in the adults) who visit. Find the Fifteen Fabulous Fauna.
A tin bath and scrubbing brush, dripping tap, a doorbell and postbox complete the whole picture, all of which look completely real. The bathroom window has steamed up with a message to passers-by and my real lace curtain falls seamlessly into its painted partner, so from any distance you wouldn’t know it wasn’t a real building. The wisteria is always in bloom around the bay window.
The whole looks even better when the trailer is travelling behind. My arrival in motorway service stations in the middle of the night brings a flurry of admiring glances. People who I overtake and then overtake me are treated to the complete picture. I love it.
I can’t wait till you see it for real.
All the best from a road near you,