Thursday, February 11, 2016

I'm Amie Denman, and I'm a painter

When I tell people I love to paint, I have the impression they think of impressionism. Monet. Renoir. Cassatt. Painters like that.

I love those artists, but when I say I'm a painter I mean something different. I paint walls. And houses.

We'll start with the walls. See this color chart? This was a gift from my husband, and it's one of the most beautiful and personal gifts he's ever given me. It says he truly loves and accepts me.


And that's not easy. I have a habit of walking into a room, looking thoughtfully around, and declaring something like this: "This room wants to be yellow!" I have painted and repainted every room in my house multiple times. One year, I repainted my living room seven times--did I mention my living room is 15' x 30'? It's a large room. Right now it wants to be a lovely soft brown called Latte. But I'm not sure how much longer that will last. My dining room was "Optimistic Yellow" for quite some time. Until I realized it wanted to be "Naval Blue." My sewing room was "Hydrangea" until it wanted to be "Snowball."

I think this mania is contagious. My sons are only teenagers, but their rooms have been at least four different colors in their relatively short lives. All it takes is a weekend and a ladder!

Here's another photo of my personal stash of paint cards. Don't you just want to start rolling it on?


Three summers ago, I looked at my 102-year-old house and noticed it wanted to be repainted. My husband lowered his eyes and reserved comment when I declared I would paint the exterior of our house all by myself. Our Ohio home is an "American Four-Square" and quite tall. With a full basement, two stories with high ceilings, and a full walk-up attic, you can imagine how high those attic dormers are. Luckily, I have no fear of heights and I consider climbing a ladder with a bucket of paint excellent exercise.

I set up ladders and planks, scraped the entire house, primed it, and brushed on two coats of paint. It took 25 gallons of paint and two months, but it's immensely satisfying to pull in my driveway and see the fruits of my labor. I also saved thousands of dollars doing it myself!

Sure, my neighbors thought I was crazy. Cars slowed down as they passed by while I was perched way high on a ladder serenely brushing on paint. My parents worried I'd hurt myself, but a close call with an ugly spider was my only scare.

Can you believe I painted my house white? I toyed with other colors, believe me. But conformity won out, much to the relief of my husband and neighbors. One of these days, I truly believe my house will want to be "Lilac" or "Picnic Green." I'm sure my neighbors will understand.

I hope you'll visit me at www.amiedenman.com to see my other
creative works: romance novels.

I'm so glad Under the Boardwalk is available, and the second in the series now has a name: Carousel Nights. Can't wait to share it with you this summer!

Amie


14 comments:

  1. I respect you even more now, Amie. I bet your house looks beautiful, inside and out!

    Congratulations on the release of your Heartwarming debut. Do you have a release date yet for the second book?

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  2. You are fantastic. My last paint project was a lovely peanut butter brown with white trim. I’d seen it at a friend’s place and thought it was so fabulous. But I don't share the love of painting that you have. To me it's work.

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  3. Amie, what I really want is for you to visit me and ask my walls what color they want to be--then stay long enough to climb those ladders to the highest parts of the living room walls. My walls are still the color they were when I moved in, blah beige. I can't wait to get your book.

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  4. Amie, Wow. That is a lot of painting. I enjoy painting, too, but every few years seems to be the best I can manage. And I really admire you for taking on the outside of your house! Congratulations on your book successes! I adore the title Carousel Nights.

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  5. Can you please come to my house? I have lots of rooms that need painting! My husband swears he'll get to it ... but I'm starting to think he's lying. I don't have the patience for painting. I certainly can't imagine painting the entire outside of a house. Kudos to you!

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  6. I was going to ask the same question Amy did. :) I'm so impressed, Amie...the outside, WOW!
    Does painting help you to create new story ideas?

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  7. I'm a wall painter, too, but I like both feet on the ground. I'm so impressed that you painted a two-story house, with a brush no less. Wow.

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  8. If I give you my address, will you come??? As one who has had to be the one at the top of the ladder, I'm impressed that you eagerly did that!

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  9. I'll add to the "Please come to my house and paint." Mine needs it inside and out. I'm currently reading your book. Great story!

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  10. I love to paint too, but I've only done the interior. The outside of my current house and the one before were sided with vinyl siding, so it didn't need painting. I have painted my interior bedrooms and halls, all but one, my bedroom. I'll be getting to that soon. I love the satisfaction of seeing the finished product and knowing it had my hands on it.

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  11. Amie! I, too, have an American Four Square built in 1906. You must have the bigger style because I have two stories and a full basement, but the only access to the attic is through a hole in the bathroom ceiling and you have to be the Hunchback of Notre Dame to walk around in it. I like to paint, but inside. Even at 71, I'm comfortable on top of a ladder (my natural father had a painting/wall papering business - must have inherited something from him) But I like the idea that if I fall I'll hit carpet and not concrete! But how cool that you saved thousands! Last time we repainted it was over 7,000. Love the looks of your book! Congratulations on your book birthing!

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  12. Thanks to everyone for stopping by to say hello and sharing your paint stories! One of these days, I'm seriously thinking of having a heroine who has a house-painting business. Imagine that one! Perhaps a series based upon women with nontraditional or unusual occupations. Now I'm thinking...

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  13. Amie, if you'll come and spend the summer with me, I'll feed you really well and stay out of your way while you listen to what my rooms tell you. I'll buy the paint and sigh blissfully about what I'm not having to do... This is so cool!

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  14. I love this post! I too, am a painter. Not an artist, but rather, a painter. There is nothing more calming to me then walking into the store and picking out the perfect color. I wish that I had a house to paint! I have a brick home and won't paint those beautiful bricks white.

    Glad to see a fellow painter in this world!

    Cecilia Hammond @ Pro Active Residential

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