Friday, January 29, 2010

Revisiting the Cupboard Under the Stairs

Yesterday I took Kate and Andy and drove out to Port Orchard to see Sylvia and the Cupboard Under the Stairs, which I painted over the course of about fourteen months, off and on. I hadn't been out there since I finished it, almost four years ago. (The finishing-up pictures are here, or if you want to see more you can click here and then scroll down past this post.)

It was fun to see Sylvia again. She said they often have people (friends of friends) knocking on the door and saying, "Can we see your closet?"

I borrowed Larry Golden's wide-angle lens to get some pictures. The closet is small and the hall is narrow, so with my 50mm lens I can't get far enough away to get the whole thing in at once. It was a bit of a trade-off, though--that lens only goes to f/4, so I had the ISO all the way up to 1600 to get enough light. (I didn't have my flash-bouncer with me.) Hence the grainy photos.

The halogen light in the ceiling, pointed at the moon, is what makes it glow like that. It does look pretty cool in person, but for some reason it's even more impressive in photos.

Here's what they did in bottom end of the closet. I hadn't seen this part at all. (Had to use my flash for this one.) Sylvia said they did have all the Harry Potter books in here, too, but she relocated them recently when there was a bit of rambunctiousness going on in the closet and she didn't want them to get damaged.

Doesn't this look like a fun place to play?

I got some great pictures of Kate on Sylvia's window seat, so I wanted to try some with both kids. We were losing light by then, though, and I only got one kid in focus.

Kate enjoyed playing with this gear toy for a while.

Andy thought it was pretty cool, too!

It's a forty-minute (ish) drive out there. Quite a long way to go back and forth. I still remembered the way!


Helen in Australia said...

That mural is absolutely stunning. Wow.

One of the advantages of blog-sized photos is that they can hide the flaws that YOU might notice but which become invisible when scaled down ... or observed by folk who can see that they're good photos anyway!

Susan said...

It's beautiful. I love the photo of Andy in his triumphant pose--yay!

Wingnut said...

I'm not sure how I've never seen anything about this one before :) Talk about amazing!!

Kathey said...

It was really great to see this. I was wondering what made it glow like that. Spectacular. ^-^

MamaBug said...

What fun to be able to share this with your kiddos, who are getting to see it for the first time (or the first time in a very long time :D ).

Heather T. said...

Wow, that's just amazing, Helena!!! We just finished the 6th movie tonight, so I'm especially attuned to it--magnificent!

Mindy Hanson said...

The mural is spectacular!!!! Amazing talent, girl!

scrapper al said...

The mural is as amazing as ever! It is fun to see your kids enjoying it.

Laura Call said...

I can't believe that was already 4 years ago... I remember when you were working on that. I remember when I first saw pictures of it, I called Tyler in to look at them too and we both just stared at your work in amazement. It's truly incredible! How neat to take your kids back there now and show them... especially Kate.

Why am I here??? said...

WOWSERS!!!!!! At first I thought it was wall paper. I can't believe how good this is!