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Decorative Artisan of the Month
Decorative Artist of the Month Archived
Decorative Painting Finishing School Mark Tillman
Decorative Painting Finishing School Donna Mock
Decorative Painting Finishing School Carmen Vergara
Decorative Painting Finishing School Lessandra Martins Melo
Decorative Painting Finishing School Anita Yeh
Decorative Painting Finishing School Sarah Hines and Mets Schilstra
Decorative Painting Finishing School Eulojio Ortega
Decorative Painting Finishing School Alison Ubert
Decorative Painting Finishing School Diane Kessler
Decorative Painting Finishing School Donna Flecchia
Decorative Painting Finishing School Joanne Ledbetter
Decorative Painting Finishing School Rachel Sejas
Decorative Painting Finishing School Cheryl Phan
Decorative Painting Finishing School Carrie Chimenti
Decorative Painting Finishing School Ann Simpson
Decorative Painting Finishing School Natalie Gorden
Decorative Painting Finishing School Marlene Mancilla
Decorative Painting Finishing School Diane LaLonde Hasso
Decorative Painting Finishing School Kim Bouy
Decorative Painting Finishing School Kathy Anders
Decorative Painting Finishing School Alyse and Amy Leventhal
Decorative Painting Finishing School Laurie Schrader
Decorative Painting Finishing School Carey Seven
Decorative Painting Finishing School Bryan King
Decorative Painting Finishing School Patricia Presto
Decorative Painting Finishing School Kass Wilson
Decorative Painting Finishing School Heidi Cinker
Decorative Painting Finishing School Shari Fry
Decorative Painting Finishing School Leigh Jones
Decorative Painting Finishing School Diane Beard
Decorative Painting Finishing School Ruth Giovannetti
Decorative Painting Finishing School Collen Drew
Decorative Painting Finishing School Melissa Loutos
Decorative Painting Finishing School Nathalie Nielsen
Decorative Painting Finishing School Susan Giugliano
Decorative Painting Finishing School Sarah Beth Cohen
Decorative Painting Finishing School Tracy Taylor
Decorative Painting Finishing School Janelle Tague
Decorative Painting Finishing School Kari Campbell
Decorative Painting Finishing School Ed Gonet
Decorative Painting Finishing School Bonnie Norling Wakeman
Decorative Painting Finishing School Kelly Weik
Decorative Painting Finishing School Janelle Tague
Decorative Painting Finishing School Gracie Reed
Decorative Painting Finishing School Allyce Lees
Decorative Painting Finishing School Terry Gavigan
Decorative Painting Finishing School Kate Perret
Decorative Painting Finishing School Jo-Marie Frigo
Decorative Painting Finishing School Deb Spertus
Decorative Painting Finishing School David Ryan
Decorative Painting Finishing School Clint Dunning
Decorative Painting Finishing School Roseann Bode
Decorative Painting Finishing School Wendy Digel
Decorative Painting Finishing School Lisa Butts
Decorative Painting Finishing School Catherine Coy
Decorative Painting Finishing School Pamela Coslet
Decorative Painting Finishing School Emily Quinn
Decorative Painting Finishing School Gary Riley
Decorative Painting Finishing School Bill Fisher
Decorative Painting Finishing School John Micheals
Decorative Painting Finishing School Faux Maison
Decorative Painting Finishing School Herb Shropshire
Decorative Painting Finishing School Gus Kyriakopoulos
Decorative Painting Finishing School Paul Minnihan
Decorative Painting Finishing School Jenna DeFalco
Decorative Painting Finishing School Sherri Grupe
Decorative Painting Finishing School Debbie Brown
Decorative Painting Finishing School Cynthia Davis
Decorative Artisan Dawn Bray
Decorative Faux Finisher Christine McIntyre-Hannon
Faux Finisher Faux Finishing School Anna and Scott Sadler
Faux Finisher Faux Finishing School Darryl Grant
Faux Finisher Faux Finishing School B. Juliana Leo
Faux Finisher Faux Finishing School Leslie Nesbitt
Faux Finisher Faux Finishing School Signature Mural & Finish, Inc.
Faux Finisher Faux Finishing School Joanne Voll
Faux Finisher Faux Finishing School Barb Runyard
Faux Finisher Faux Finishing School Nathan Giffin
Faux Finisher Faux Finishing School Patty Henning
Faux Finisher Faux Finishing School Emma Wright
Faux Finisher Faux Finishing School Joseph Freer
Faux Finisher Faux Finishing School Dawn Rundle
August 2006 Simona Clinge
August 2006 Ron Bledsoe
August 2006 Sharon Taglienti
August 2006 Martin Riding
August 2006 Tomas Kyrgiakos /
Iowanna Azar
August 2006 Jenna DeFalco
August 2006 Alissa Murnane
August 2006 Rhonda Barber
August 2006 Laura Ross
August 2006 Nancy Schnell
August 2006 John Michaels
August 2006 Debi Vaninger
August 2006 Marsh Danner
August 2006 Beth Haynes
August 2006 Cassy Weddel
August 2006 Bruce Thalman
August 2006 Melanie & Stuart Kershner
August 2006 Lorie Wolff
Doug Diekman
Lori Tselikis
Joanne Voll
Linda Wetsch
Jennifer Rongaus
Natalie White
Dan Gangler
Sharon Damisch
Kay Reyes
Mary Johnson
Ed Hartfiel
Estelle Leptich
Laurie Ebert

 

Artisan of the Month
John Michaels
John Michaels Decorating
North Riverside, Illinois

John Michaels originally set out for a career in marketing, but after working in retail management he realized that it was not what he was looking for.  In 1989 John started working part-time for a friend’s painting business, while also establishing his own business, John Michaels Decorating.  During this time he learned the trade and honed his painting skills through his membership with the PDCA(Painting and Decorating Contractors of America).  In the mid 1990’s he discovered faux while working on a showcase home for charity and his passion for faux was born.

His desire to learn how to produce the beautiful finishes that he had seen in the showcase home took him to the Art Institute of Chicago.  While taking a class at the Institute, he met another student who told him of Kathy Carroll’s faux finishing classes that she was offering.  From there, John went on building his portfolio while still performing straight painting jobs.  By 2005, about 60 percent of the jobs that he was retaining were for faux finishes.

John Michaels Decorating can provide any service to meet your painting and finishing needs.  Although John’s focus is on faux finish, they are equipped to perform services from straight painting to light carpentry and tiling.  With John Michaels Decorating, there is no need to hire multiple contractors when redecorating your home.   This helps his clients to save both time and money in their decorating project.

John’s talent for carpentry and eye for color serves him well on his jobs.  On a recent job for a client in Brookfield, Illinois both were called into play when he came upon a stair tread that had been badly damaged.  Knowing that with the age of the wood it would be difficult to find a replacement tread to match, he set out for a different solution.  He molded epoxy to the shape of the broken tread and then went on to match the wood color and grain with a faux wood grain.  The results he achieved are stunning, and the repair is undetectable.   Proving his assertion that “faux is for more than just walls.”

John also made use of his faux wood graining skill in a home he worked on in Chicago’s Hyde Park neighborhood.  The home had beautiful hardwood flooring; unfortunately it also had large and unsightly metal floor vents.  Upon observing the vents, John had an idea to finish the vents with the same floorboard pattern as the hardwood.  He presented the suggestion to his client and set off to work making the vents disappear into the floor.  Even with this addition to the project, he was still able to finish the job on time.

Another of John’s customers wanted to use faux to make her ceilings the centerpiece of her décor.  Originally he was just hired to finish her master bedroom walls and ceiling, however, upon seeing the impact that the finished ceiling, or “the fifth wall” as John likes to call it, had on the room she was stunned.  Impressed by John’s attention to detail and color, she hired John Michaels Decorating to finish other ceilings throughout her home. 

When asked about his favorite finishes John answered “I don’t have any ‘real’ favorites.  It’s like trying to pick a favorite child.” Among his many favorites he lists, faux leather (as shown in the fireplace pictured), glazes, Venetian plasters, and wood graining.  He also commented that the number of people requesting cabinet re-finishing has gone up as people realize that it is less expensive to refinish their cabinets than to replace them.  Ideas for reusing existing cabinets range from simply painting the cabinets to adding faux finishes.  John adds that many faux finishes work well on cabinetry.  He also shares that painting or faux finishing existing cabinets is superior to using laminate cabinet re-facing because overtime laminate can pull away, whereas the paint becomes one with the cabinet.

One of John’s favorite products that he purchases through Kathy Carroll is Bella Fresco Glaze.  He enjoys working with the glaze because “it dries very quickly, allowing you to do multiple layers in a single day.”  This came in handy when he was working on finishing the floor vents with a wood grain look.  He comments “each vent had 4 or 5 faux boards, and with this product I could faux 2 boards onto the vent, then mask over those freshly fauxed boards after only a few hours and go on to complete the others on that same vent.”  John also adds that it is very economical and a great product for striping.

John routinely sets aside 1 to 2 weeks each year for continuing education.  When asked why he thinks this is important he says “it helps me to stay motivated, keep my portfolio fresh, and learn about new products.  It’s important to keep investing in yourself and your business, as well as maintaining relationships with others in the field.” He has already taken Kathy Carroll’s Professional Update twice, and plans on taking it again.  He enjoys taking the course because it is geared toward those with an advanced skill level and goes at a faster pace.  He describes it as a “faux class on steroids.”  In addition to taking courses, John also finds his memberships with IDAL (International Decorative Artisans League) and PDCA important to his career because of the unique educational and networking opportunities that they offer to their members.

When asked about Kathy Carroll he comments that “she has a willingness to help, and she really stands behind what she teaches and sells.  We were doing a faux leather finish in Chicago, and Kathy called to see how the job was going.  It impressed me because the call was completely unsolicited.”  He also went on to say that she has always been there to help him find solutions if he has run into problems, adding that she has even given him her cell number in case he needs it.  He finishes by saying of Kathy that “she is a good teacher and very business oriented.  She’s smart and knows the industry.”

For more information about John Michaels Decorating visit their website at johnmichaelsdecorating.com, Facebook page, or contact John via email at john@johnmichaelsdecorating.com or by phone at 708-447-9500.

 

Before
light construction and wood graining decorative painting John Michaels Decorating North Riverside, Illinois
After
light construction and wood graining decorative painting John Michaels Decorating Chicago, Illinois

Before
before metalic ceiling decorative painting John Michaels Decorating North Riverside, Illinois

After
metalic ceiling decorative painting John Michaels Decorating North Riverside, Illinois

Before
Wood graining decorative painting John Michaels Decorating North Riverside, Illinois
Wood graining decorative painting John Michaels Decorating North Riverside, Illinois
After
Wood graining decorative painting John Michaels Decorating North Riverside, Illinois

 

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