Tooting Our Own Horn
So, what do you think of that catchy title? Actually, “tooting our own horn” has little to do with bragging and a lot to do with decorative surfaces. It has to do with unusual thought processes, looking at things differently and thinking out of the box. The creative mind is always looking at things differently. What can I do with this old box of sheet music? How can I use this old wooden pallet in a creative way? (By the way, did you see Thistlewood Farm’s cool and creative pallet top desk? You have to check it out. It’s very cool.) Is it possible to turn this old map into something artistic? You know how it is. We look at every object as an opportunity to flex our creative muscle.
As some of you know, I have been a music teacher for almost 30 years. Several years ago we came across some instruments that were ordered from a new manufacturer. We received the instruments to find that they were built incorrectly, would never play in tune and that the finish was peeling. In other words, they had no function as a musical instrument. The company immediately replaced them with usable instruments but the originals were never collected. We looked into melting them down….long story but it wouldn’t work. So, we were instructed to dispose of them. I couldn’t bring myself to do it so one of them sat in my shed for years. Then, it was time to clean and purge junk. Under piles of old tools, broken lawn chairs and other STUFF was this old instrument. The second I saw it I looked past the flaws and saw a lovely, curvulinear shape that screamed PAINTING SURFACE. And, off I went.
I decided to base this in green blue and do a very loose, alla prima floral design on it. It took about three hours to paint and we have used it in so many decorative situations. Cathy displays it at Christmas as part of a centerpiece. We also have used it in photographs of our home and as a decorative piece on our mantle. We are always looking for ways to restage our house – always a challenge.
Of course, this starts the creative wheels turning. Throw nothing out! Find a way to reuse those old instruments that don’t function anymore. Imagine a collection of old instruments in displays around your home. Painted or unpainted these lovely, curvy objects provide a wonderful opportunity for artistic expression.
So, of course, our kids get in on the action. They know that we are always looking for the unusual. They have been taught to think out of the box and that an old tackle box can be a wonderful decorative item, an old suitcase can be an end table. You know how families work. Anyhow, our youngest daughter sent us a really excited text. “Mom, Dad, you are going to love me. You won’t believe what surprise I got for you.”
See, she is a college music student and in one of her classes they discovered an old instrument that could not be fixed. It was cracked at the back of the neck and could not be played. After a class discussion the teacher said, “Just throw it in the dumpster”. But our daughter knows better. “No, I’ll take it”. The teacher replied, “It won’t ever play again”. “I don’t mind,” our smart daughter responded, “I want it”. And this is what she presented to us.
You can believe that this will be a future post. We are already brainstorming the possibilites and the Creative Couple negotiation has begun. We are both tossing out ideas, narrowing the focus and deciding how we would like our old, broken down Cello to function. There are lots of places on the Internet that feature other painted Cellos but we have our own style. Even so, we are always looking for suggestions. We would love to hear from you. What would you do with this curvy, lovely, old, broken down beauty? Time for a good old Internet brainstorming session. Join in and let us know what you think.
Until next time,
PaulPosted by admin | 29 comments