"Mr. Rogers" Chair Transforms!

View From Start to Finish the Twenty-Five Club of Magee Women's Hospital Charity Auction "Mr. Rogers" Chair

"Mr. Rogers" chair donated to the Twenty-Five Club of Magee Women's Hospital UPMC, Pittsburgh

"Mr. Rogers" chair donated to the Twenty-Five Club of Magee Women's Hospital UPMC, Pittsburgh

Today I will be showing the exciting transformation of my "Mr. Rogers" chair that I have completed! I was first approached by a Magee Women's board member in May who asked if I would like to complete a piece for a charity event held each year by the "The Twenty-Five Club." Since 1939, The Twenty-Five Club has supported infant research at Magee Women's Hospital of UPMC. The Club's donations have supported and provided for the state-of-the-art recent renovations in the neonatal intensive care unit. 

The event itself is called "The Cradle Will Rock," which is an event for which artists are asked to paint on stools, chairs and/or rocking horses for a charity auction benefiting Magee Women's hospital. Each piece is hand-painted by an artist and then donated and auctioned off at the "The Cradle Will Rock" event itself. This year, the event is also celebrating the Twenty- Five Club's 75th Anniversary! This fundraiser helps to support funding for the technology and expertise needed for the successful recovery of infants who require neonatal care, while offering a more intimate environment for the babies' families during their recovery. I was so grateful and so excited about the opportunity that I didn't want to paint just one piece to be donated. So, I volunteered to paint two!  Check out the photos below to learn about the painting transformation step by step!

To learn more about The Twenty Five Club of Magee Women's Hospital and to find a way to help or donate, please go to http://www.mwrif.org/56/women-s-auxiliaries.

Photo 1.  I didn't know how I wanted to approach painting a wooden chair for the first time. I knew I wanted the final result to be with oil paint so, going out on a limb, I decided to prime the seat with acrylic paint. To be honest, I didn't know if it would work or the paint would not stick and just chip right off. I first cleaned and primed the seat and head of the chair with the acrylic paint. Then, I drew the design I wanted using reference photos I liked. I also had to be very careful drawing the design onto the seat because the surface is not completely flat like a canvas. There's a dip in the seat for where you sit down, so I had to draw the design with the dip of the chair. If i didn't draw all of the design at the exact angle I knew the entire face could look  completely distorted when viewed at certain angles. To be safe, I drew the entire design looking straight down at a birds eye view drawing with the dip in the seat. You'll notice reddish marks all over the chair. When I started painting the acrylic onto the chair, the chairs wood finish started to bleed through. Needless to say, I was pretty nervous the chair was going to continue to bleed through the finished oil paint and that maybe my acrylic paint primer idea wasn't a good idea after all.      

Photo 1.  I didn't know how I wanted to approach painting a wooden chair for the first time. I knew I wanted the final result to be with oil paint so, going out on a limb, I decided to prime the seat with acrylic paint. To be honest, I didn't know if it would work or the paint would not stick and just chip right off. I first cleaned and primed the seat and head of the chair with the acrylic paint. Then, I drew the design I wanted using reference photos I liked. I also had to be very careful drawing the design onto the seat because the surface is not completely flat like a canvas. There's a dip in the seat for where you sit down, so I had to draw the design with the dip of the chair. If i didn't draw all of the design at the exact angle I knew the entire face could look  completely distorted when viewed at certain angles. To be safe, I drew the entire design looking straight down at a birds eye view drawing with the dip in the seat. You'll notice reddish marks all over the chair. When I started painting the acrylic onto the chair, the chairs wood finish started to bleed through. Needless to say, I was pretty nervous the chair was going to continue to bleed through the finished oil paint and that maybe my acrylic paint primer idea wasn't a good idea after all.

 

 

 

Photo 2. Luckily after I put a layer of oil paint and color block the entire chair, the chairs finish does not bleed through. I also  painted a quick blue sky with clouds on the top of the chair where I later write the famous Fred Rogers quote " Anyone who does anything to help a child in his life is a hero to me." I thought that quote was nothing short of perfect for the theme of "The Cradle Will Rock" event and it goes gracefully with the theme of the chair. An absolutely spot on quote in every way that its too fitting. Side note (As you can tell, I was painting the chair in my living room which was completely taken over by paint and brushes for the duration of time).

Photo 2. Luckily after I put a layer of oil paint and color block the entire chair, the chairs finish does not bleed through. I also  painted a quick blue sky with clouds on the top of the chair where I later write the famous Fred Rogers quote " Anyone who does anything to help a child in his life is a hero to me." I thought that quote was nothing short of perfect for the theme of "The Cradle Will Rock" event and it goes gracefully with the theme of the chair. An absolutely spot on quote in every way that its too fitting. Side note (As you can tell, I was painting the chair in my living room which was completely taken over by paint and brushes for the duration of time).

Photo 3. By this point I have completed X the Owl and Daniel Tiger and work my way to the trolley next.

Photo 3. By this point I have completed X the Owl and Daniel Tiger and work my way to the trolley next.

Photo 4. By now my knees having been hurting from sitting and painting on the floor but I've finished Trolley and started working my way onto Mr. Rogers neck and chin. You also might be able to notice when I take a photo of the chair in the natural light and when I was painting with a lamp which gives off a yellow color. This concerned me that my colors would be off from the original picture when I saw it the next morning in the natural light.

Photo 4. By now my knees having been hurting from sitting and painting on the floor but I've finished Trolley and started working my way onto Mr. Rogers neck and chin. You also might be able to notice when I take a photo of the chair in the natural light and when I was painting with a lamp which gives off a yellow color. This concerned me that my colors would be off from the original picture when I saw it the next morning in the natural light.

Photo 5. I've finished Mr. Rogers face and I still need to work on his hair and adjust his white shirt collar and sweater. I notice that the design is still pushing  your eye to the right and I need to add more things to the left of the chair to balance everything out for a more eye pleasing composition.

Photo 5. I've finished Mr. Rogers face and I still need to work on his hair and adjust his white shirt collar and sweater. I notice that the design is still pushing  your eye to the right and I need to add more things to the left of the chair to balance everything out for a more eye pleasing composition.

Photo 6. At the last minute I decide to add King Fridays's castle. I originally wanted King Friday and Lady Elaine in the chair design but I drew Mr. Rogers and X the Owl too big for my original plan. Just a few more highlights to Mr. Rogers hair and tweaks here and there. Almost done!

Photo 6. At the last minute I decide to add King Fridays's castle. I originally wanted King Friday and Lady Elaine in the chair design but I drew Mr. Rogers and X the Owl too big for my original plan. Just a few more highlights to Mr. Rogers hair and tweaks here and there. Almost done!

Finished Chair! I loved the way the chair turned out I could almost cry. This is the raw image taken with my    iPhone. I hope the chair raises a lot of money for The 25 Club of Magee Women's Hospital and brings back some of Mr. Roger's legacy!

Finished Chair! I loved the way the chair turned out I could almost cry. This is the raw image taken with my    iPhone. I hope the chair raises a lot of money for The 25 Club of Magee Women's Hospital and brings back some of Mr. Roger's legacy!

Closer picture with Mr. Roger's and Daniel Tiger

Closer picture with Mr. Roger's and Daniel Tiger