This door is to disguise an access panel and the power going in to the house. A simple piece of plywood is where it starts, cut to size and sanded with a belt sander.
It was specially sized to fit over the electrical box, protecting it from weather, and also still allowing the meter itself to be viewed by the meter reader.
With smart meters, sometimes they can be read from a vehicle, the guy doesn't even have to get out!
Mike is the carpenter of the family and doesn't mind using power tools.
A coat of black acrylic exterior latex gives a seal, and a base for the fun part. I have a liking right now for camouflage, and making things look as though they have twigs covering them is one of my designs.
The black paint is brushed onto both sides of the plywood, and before it dries I'm making the first parts of the tree and twig design. They can be very rudimentary for the first layer, because in real life, these would be the furthest away from the viewer.
Second and third coats are done to make the perspective appear to be with the nearer trees and twigs in much more detail, with boles, holes and twigs, and the texture of the bark.
Each coat is left to completely dry, which can take several hours, depending on how thick the paint is put on, and also the humidity and temperature.
Most of this water based acrylic paint dries quickly - making it important to not go back and touch it up because this will pull the dried top later, making a mess of the whole layer. It's best to just keep moving and don't look back!
The final coat or two is transparent water based urethane to completely seal the painting. I've used this before and it lasts for years, even in full sun and in the weather.
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