Friday, November 14, 2008

Site of the Week on "Your Neighbor's Place"

I always love to get exposure out there in the internet world. Once again Surfaces with Paint has been written about on a great new site called "Your Neighbor's Place".

"I'd like to showcase the website of one of our members ....Dawn..... Surfaces With Paint, where she has shown off her incredible murals. She's done quite a few murals in plenty of categories - nautical, fairy tale, trees, jungles, animals, tropical and more. Take a look if you are thinking about painting a mural for a nursery or any other room in your home."

Click Here to read more.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Taking a Break - New Baby is Here!!

Jaden Cliff Papandea-Khan was born on October 23rd. He was 6lbs. 10ozs.

I know that it has been quite a while since I last posted. But I had to take a break due to my pregnancy and now that the cutie is here, I will be taking a couple more months off from painting.

I have several clients patiently waiting for me, so once we get on a better sleep schedule - I will be back in full swing.

Boy do I miss painting!!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

"Talent of a Muralist" by Paint Your Space

I am happy to announce yet another opportunity for Surfaces with Paint to gain exposure on the internet. Check out this post called "Talent of a Muralist"

Paint Your Space offers a simple and affordable approach to choosing paint color in your home or business. Leslie David of Leslie David Designs offers online color consultations to help people choose the perfect paint color combinations for their walls. All you have to do is upload a few pictures and she will do all of the work for you.

Leslie has recently spotlighted me and some of my work, so I also wanted to take this opportunity to share that with you and also say a public thank you to Leslie for what I call "linkin' love".

Click here to see the post.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Vote for my Nursery Murals Blog!

I need your votes!! I just signed my Nursery Murals and More Blog up on They are offering free prizes to the blogs that get the most votes.

Can you click on the link below and vote for me? I would really appreciate it!!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Painter Mommy Update

As most of you know, I am very pregnant with only a few short weeks to go. I am taking a few months off from painting, though I am missing it terribly.

Here is a picture of my baby belly taken 2 months ago, so you can imagine how much bigger I am now.

I also have 2 little ones at home, so they have been keeping me pretty busy. They can't wait to meet their baby brother.

In the meantime, I have been working hard on keeping my blogs updated. I hope that you will take the time to check them out and subscribe via email so you can get email updates each time I post something new. I have found some great inspirational mural ideas that I am sure you would love.

Here are the links:

I will keep you all updated with pictures once the baby comes. I can't wait to get back to painting again!!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

"Eight Great Children's Mural Painters" and I am one of them!!

I am proud to announce that I was recently included in an online article called "Eight Great Children's Mural Painters" on, a social resource site which includes everything from Family, Arts & Culture, to Travel and Beauty.

Here is a blurb from their site that better describes who they are:

"We created Spire to provide a unique and much-needed resource for busy people like us—people with refined taste and no time to waste. We listened...and listened, and learned that it was not another social network people wanted, but an upscale, insightful lifestyle resource to live life well."

Here is what they wrote about me:

Surfaces with Paint
Mahopac, New York

"Artist and decorative painter Dawn Papandrea-Khan takes so many things into consideration when planning children's murals—colors, room lighting, furniture and accessories, adjoining rooms, style, taste and budget—it's no surprise she considers herself a perfectionist. A former elementary art and decorative painting teacher, and the mother of two young children, Dawn launched the company in 2001 and works mainly in the tri-state area of NY. She does all the work herself from start to finish, covering every detail from paint type to faux finishes. Prices vary from mural to mural, ranging from $500 to $5,000 and more. Themes cover fairytales, nursery rhymes, animals, marine life, boats and flowers, among many others, and you can work with her to dream up a personalized creation." | Phone: +1 845 669 9093
PO Box 575 | Mahopac, NY 10541 United States
Geography: Other, New York

Thank you Spire!!!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Geometric Frottage Finish

My client had the book Decorative Paint & Faux Finishes by Sunset and she loved the finish that was presented in the book. So, we picked colors that matched the walls in the book and we went from there.

This was the same client that I did the Crackle Finish Kitchen for several years ago. She enjoys bold paint finishes that stand out. She likes to take risks and loves to WOW her family and friends. This bathroom frottage finish definitely does the trick.

I chose to have the trim and doors painted with the base color that I used in the faux finish on the walls. It also matches the beige white color in the sink, counter top, tub, and toilet. The walls pop against the warm tones in the tile floor as well as the dark cherry vanity.

I look forward to taking more pictures when the room is complete. They still need to add the plumbing and lighting fixtures as well as put up the shower curtain, towels, and accessories. That will tie it all together nicely.

I recently posted on my Murals and Faux Blog step by step instructions on how to do the Geometric Frottage Finish. Be sure to check it out.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Nautical Themed Border

This hand painted nautical themed border was done for my client's 2 yr old son's bedroom. We worked together and came up with a plan that fit her taste and style of the room. We chose 4 symbols - an anchor, a life preserver, a boat steering wheel, and a sailboat. Each is connected by a gold nautical rope. The hardest part was doing the measuring and making sure that the symbols were evenly spaced on each wall.

We did have one unexpected situation, that I learned my lesson from - the ceiling was painted with flat paint. I did not realize this until the job was done and noticed, in one spot, that my eraser marks were showing. A mural should never be painted on top of flat paint, because any scratch, flaw, or marks will show. So, for those of you Do It Yourselfer's out there - make sure you base paint with an eggshell, pearl, or satin finish paint FIRST. I now have to go back and touch up the areas where the marks are showing. Thank God my client was very patient and cooperative.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Nursery Mural Ideas - New Site

I am happy to announce another new site that I will be hosting - Nursery Murals- Inspirational Pictures & Ideas. I will use this site to feature great mural pictures, nursery decorating tips, nursery mural theme ideas, and much more. If you are interested, please subscribe by adding your email address in the blog and we will send you email updates as we post.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Fairytale Mural

This was my second mural for this client. Remember the nautical theme mural for the triplet boy's room? Well, this room was done for their 3 month old baby sister (her soon to be nursery).

I enjoyed doing this mural from start to finish. We started with a few mural pictures that I had printed out from the internet. I had the client pick and choose elements that they liked from each picture. They wanted a castle, unicorn, flowers, and fairies. They also wanted a beautiful colorful sky.

My favorite part of the mural is the castle and the stone walls.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Setting Time Limits for Painting Murals

I recently was emailed this question:

Hi Dawn!
I am really inspired by your spirit and talent!

My question is, do you set time
lines for a job? I am currently working on a mural in a pet store, and the owner stands behind me and rushes me. I explain that i can't speed up the process that takes it's course in details.

I have my 5 year old son who accompanies me
on this job while daddy is in Iraq. he sits and paints paper while I paint walls.

Should there be a time line? How should I manage the time? Has a client
ever told you it must be done within "their" limits of time, or do you set the time "you" need and let that be the clock? How do I stand strong when a client is breathing down my neck?

Thank you, Iris

Hi Iris, I would be happy to answer your question for you. Time limits can definitely be difficult when doing work for a business. I do set time limits for myself when doing a job. Yes, I have had clients need me to finish within their time limits. It is only fair, because you are working for them. If they need the job done by a certain date, make sure it is feasible for you before accepting the job.

Because I have several years experience, I can pretty much guess how long a mural will take me. I give my client a general idea of how many days or weeks and try to stay within that time, unless there are things that come up that are out of my control.

If your client is "breathing down your neck" - that is a problem that needs to be addressed. As an artist, you need your space. You can kindly let the person know that it is difficult to focus when being watched all the time.

It is good to discuss these things before you start a project, especially for a running business. The owner may be rushing you because they don't want your painting to hinder their sales, etc. Also, did you ask permission to have your child join you on the job? This may be an issue as well, because it can be very unprofessional in the eyes of your client. They may think that it is cutting in on the time that they are paying you for to paint.

These are just a few thoughts and suggestions. I hope that you are able to talk with your client and get your job done in a timely manner.

I would LOVE to see pictures when your project is all done! DAWN "the painter"

Here are a few great resources for you to check out:

Also, check out my new blog:

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Small Bathroom - Old World Plaster

Even though this bathroom was small - the awesome part was - it was empty! No sink, no toilet, completely empty. So, I was able to get the job done quickly and without having to reach over anything.

I know you can't tell in this picture, but I am actually 5 1/2 months pregnant. I am still trying to keep painting as long as I can or until I can't get up and down my ladder anymore.

The finish came out beautiful. I am actually working on a picture / video tutorial on how to do this finish, so stay tuned. We will be offering it on my buddy's site:

Monday, June 9, 2008

Two Trees - Nursery Mural

This was a nice one day mural job. I enjoyed getting a break today, from my little ones at home, to be able to paint. This was done for a client in White Plains, NY - for her 4 month old daughter's nursery / bedroom. She wanted the trees to be a bit whimsical and not as realistic as my usual trees.

What a difference a couple simple trees can make in a room. They frame the window that faces the real trees in their yard outside. What a great way to bring the outdoors in.

I can't wait to see the room after the furniture is in and it is decorated.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

My New Murals & Faux Blog

I decided to start a new Murals & Faux Finishing Blog focusing on Great Tips, Resources, and Painting Ideas. You can subscribe to the blog separately if you would like to get an email every time new posts are added. Check it out and let me know what you think so far. I always love to read your comments.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Created a New Website for Artist Friend in Phoenix

Sheila Eastman of Eastman Art & Painting, LLC is a muralist & faux finisher out of Phoenix, Arizona. She contacted me through an international painter's forum, that we are both involved in, about possibly re-doing her website. I welcomed the challenge and for the past couple weeks we have been working together by phone and email and have come up with a great website that fits the needs of her business.

Please let me know what you think! I may consider doing this on the side, especially now that I have a 3rd baby on the way (and it is something I can do it home). I started this interest, by creating my own website about a year ago. Feel free to check it out.

Feel free to contact me through my website for a quote on re-doing your art or painting related website.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Stippling in Contemporary Kitchen

Stippling is a very soft finish that can be done in any color. Picking the right colors was quite a challenge because of all the neutral tones already in this room. The cabinets had a pink hue. The tile back splash & floor had taupes, beiges, and even tans. We went through several faux finish samples before we came up with something that would compliment the room instead of compete.

I use a wonderful stippling brush called the Leon Neon. I brush the glaze on with a 2 inch brush and then pat the glaze with the stipple brush, being careful to maintain and even and blended finish. Click here for more info on our main website.

Click here to order the Leon Neon Stippling Brush

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Nautical Themed Mural

This was done for a nursery, occupied by 16 month old triplet boys. It was nice listening to all the action while I was painting. The client wanted a mural that the boys could grow with and enjoy for years to come. She was very pleased with the outcome.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

We made changes to our website

We added a new Custom Paint Finishes page to our website. This page has many different options for Faux Paint Finishes, which include: explanation of the finishes, pictures of work that we have done under each category, and a Do It Yourself section with great resources and tips. Click Here to check it out.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Ocean Paradise Mural

I had the wonderful privilege of painting another mural for the Westchester ARC. They are a wonderful organization that takes care of the severely physically and mentally handicapped. They have several residential homes in Westchester County, NY where these individuals live and are cared for 24 hours a day. I was so blessed to be able to paint a mural for the living room of their Pound Ridge home. A mural adds so much life to a room. What a great place for these disabled individuals to go and relax.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Green Bathroom



I used several different faux finish techniques in this room. I used a dragging / strie' finish with the lighter green going in the direction of the woodwork. I used a stippling technique on the darkest green within the frames. I also did some antiquing to give it an overall aged feel. The walls were finished with a subtle golden beige stippling effect, which you cannot see in the pictures. The entire room is gorgeous in person. This took me almost 2 weeks to complete.