Sat, Feb 28th, 2015 I met Reiko & Phil in 2011 at an art show in Dunedin, FL. They loved my work, but their home was still being renovated. I saw them each year for a few years and then I received an email - we are renovating our bathroom and we want a piece from you!
So I visited them at their Tampa home and we discussed 2 projects. A bamboo mural for their Japanese style bath and a larger dimensional mural for their home. That was in November, 2014. After the holiday season, the real work began.
Phil & Reiko purchased a bamboo piece for their beautiful bathroom... and commissioned me to create a larger piece for their home. I offered to make 2 murals the size they wanted and they could pick the one that fit best.
Here's a glimpse of the process. This 30" by 63" wall art is planned to go over their bedroom headboard but after creating it, they decided to put it in a main room in their home.
First, we work on a few compositions. This one has a pebble river feel with a large sun cutout to the left. Sea grasses and pampas grasses adorn the right to left view.
The second mural will have more active carving on the waterway with pebbles scattered throughout. The soft, undulating landscape and loose botanicals will be the same. Enjoy!
Ok, so I got so busy I forgot to take some pictures along the way. But here's mural #1 glazed and framed. Mural #2, with more of a carved river surface, was framed yesterday and is hanging on my 'photo wall' today. That wall, by the way, is a bamboo wall. The mural is NOT framed in bamboo. This has confused many a viewer.
I went to Phil & Reiko's home for the delivery and the selection was made. Mural #2 with the flowing river and blue sky was the one for them. They knew it right away. I installed the piece with the help of Phil. They decided to put it on a wall at the landing of the second floor. The mural is visible from their 2nd floor bedroom, the 3rd floor loft and as you enter the home, you get a glimpse of the red sun, pulling you up the stairs. It looks beautiful!
AS AN EXTRA SPECIAL TREAT.... While Phil and I installed the artwork, Reiko, who was born outside of Tokyo, was in the kitchen busily preparing a 'traditional' Japanese meal as a celebration of our project together. Wow. The meal was a real show stopper. A fish soup with a delicious broth, filled with vegetables, shrimp, octopus, squid, scallops and a ton of other delicious goodies were in this light and delicate meal. We began the celebration dinnerl with a collection of small dishes filled with pickled cucumber, tuna sashiimi, brown rice and so many other delights I cannot remember.
We ended with a bit of 'sweetness'. Phil prepared blueberries and strawberries soaked in ginger & vinegar over a scoop of green tea ice cream. I was so overwhelmed by the love and attention put to the meal, the wonderful conversation and the delicious flavors and fragrances crossing my path that I forgot to take one photograph. I suppose that means I was truly in the NOW with my friends Reiko and Phil. Thank you both so much. This is just another example where clients become friends. What a joy and an honor. To hear Phil & Reiko's version of our experience, read their TESTIMONIAL.