Bathroom Wall Panels

Bathroom wall panels are water proof panels which are generally manufactured using thermoplastics, better known as UPVC, although some panels may be manufactured from Medite Exterior grade medium density fibreboard, which is more commonly known as MDF. This MDF board is then covered on the outer face with a high pressure laminate, and a balancing laminate is applied to the back to prevent distortion of the panel, this also improves the waterproof qualities of the panel.

Most UPVC bathroom wall panels are manufactured with two outer walls ( front & back ) and a honeycombed interior, which is necessary for good rigidity and keeping the panel flat. They are joined together using a tongue and groove system, depending on the style of panels, and this ensures each panel is locked together, thus making a more watertight and rigid joint. The joint between the panels can then be made more secure by applying a bead of silicone, and this is recommended particularly if a power shower or high pressure shower is installed.

Because the panels are manufactured using either UPVC or Laminated MDF, they are very easy to keep clean, and whilst they are extremely resistant to most chemical cleaners such as bleach products, it is recommended and indeed only necessary to use a wet soapy soft cloth, as this will be sufficient for most cleaning requirements.

All bathroom wall panels are totally waterproof are very hygienic and make a great alternative to the more conventional wall tiles, which are prone to certain strains of fungi particularly on the tiles grouting, which can produce a mouldy appearance.

They are available in many different styles and colours, which will suit any bathroom improvement requirements, and some of these styles can include:

  • Woodgrain effect
  • Marble effect
  • Mosaic effect
  • Plain colours

These wall panels can also be complimented with ceiling panels, and help to give that extra finished look.

UPVC and laminated wall panels are quick and easy to install. Installation can be applied in several ways, some of which are:

  • Screw fixed
  • Adhesive
  • Self adhesive

Installation can be carried out by the purchaser, or may be supplied and fitted by the supplier, and all installed panels can be finished with a matching trim on the top and bottom edges. For a more quality installation suppliers will usually stock the appropriate matching coving, which adds to the overall appearance and produce a very stylish bathroom. Many panel systems are available in kit form, and an accomplished DIY enthusiast should have no problem with the installation. Most bathroom panels or panel systems will usually come with a 10 to 15 year guarantee, although this depends on the quality and system purchased and may vary.

Home Theatre Design Basics

If you have an extra room in the house or have a special area in the basement you are not using, you may want to consider using the space for a home theater setup. Having a home theater can be expensive but overtime you will see the savings you are getting by being able to watch your favorite movie without having to go to a movie theater. This alone can save you a hundred dollars or so each month.

Before you do your this there is one important thing that you need to do. You need to decide where to place the screen, which could be in the corner of the room, against one wall, or even in the center of the room. It all depends on how large the area is and how many seats you have in the room. You should also make sure that the wires are hidden to avoid anyone tripping over them. For snacks and drinks you could have a small refrigerator and microwave in the room.

Here are some other basics you need to consider when doing a home theater design.

Seating arrangement

This is a very important aspect of the design because they can change the complete style and look of the room along with where the screen will be placed. For the seats you can choose individual chairs, sofas, or a combination of both. Where you place them also matters because you can have seats or sofas that are against the wall or you can also have chairs that recline.

Quality of sound

With your home theater setup you need to check the sound quality or sound system you will be using. The speakers are what makes the difference when listening to the movie. If you want a good quality sound make sure that your acoustics are fixed into place. You cannot enjoy the movie if you have poor sound quality. Make sure that you have good quality speakers. One thing that works well with a home theater is using a surround sound system. This type of system can make you feel as if you are in the middle of the action.

Lighting

This is an integral part of the home theater design. It is better if you opt for dimmed light and while watching the movie you could switch off some of the lights to enhance the colors of the movie. If the lights are off you will be able to see even the minutest details. The room should also not have many windows because the light can penetrate through the windows which can take away from the movie. This is why a basement area makes a good place for a home theater setup.

6 Types Of Puppet Stages

Just like there are different kinds of puppets, there are different kinds of puppet stages. This article talks about 6 different types of puppet stages.

Papier-mâché

One church we ministered at had formed chicken wire in the shape of a tree which they covered with papier-mâché to give it a textured look. The tree had several large knotholes for puppets to appear in and also had a large branch that puppets could come up behind. This was a permanent stage, and was well done.

Doorway Theater

Use a tight fitting curtain rod or pipe with rubber stoppers at the ends in a doorway. (An adjustable tension curtain rod works well for this.) You can place a blanket or sheet over the rod once it is in place or thread a curtain on the rod before putting it up. One nice advantage in this type of theater is you can easily adjust it to the height of your puppeteer.

There are a couple of disadvantages to this type of stage, though. You are limited by the size of the doorway. If it is a standard 36″ door, you might squeeze two puppeteers in, but it will be tight. Another disadvantage is that the door might not be in a good place in the room and you may need to add a plain colored piece of material behind it to block out what’s in the next room. Also, if it is the only entrance to the room, it could cause problems if someone wanted to get in or needed to get out of the room during the play.

Strong Cardboard Box

This works for a temporary theater but isn’t durable enough for a permanent one unless you have a good supply and can replace pieces as needed. We used this as an extension of our normal theater when doing a Christmas play. The scene was a toy store and we used cardboard boxes covered with wrapping paper as shelves for the toys. Several toys were puppets that “came to life” when the owners left.

A Wooden Theater

You can build several different styles of wood theaters. A camp near us designed a set using a western theme. They had a bunkhouse on one side, a wooden fence in the middle, and a ranch house on the other side. Puppets could appear over the fence or in the windows or doorways of either house.

At a church we attended, we built a puppet house. It consisted of a wall across the width of the room, out about three feet from one end. We built it so it looked like the side of a house with a large window on one side, a door in the middle, and a small window on the other side. To give it the effect of the side of a house, we used 1″ X 6″ Novelty Siding. We also added a roof using cedar shingles. To the right of the door was a 36″ TV and our sound system. We also had it set so we could place a white dry-erase board over the doorway.

Wood Frame Theater

When our team consisted of more than eight members, our old theater wasn’t large enough. We also did some outdoor programs and found the wind caused problems with our regular theater; so we decided to build a new, sturdier theater.

We first constructed several wood frames using 1″ X 3″ boards. The frames were a little over 4′ high and 2′ wide and held together using L-shape brackets and screws. We then stretched fabric over the frames and stapled it in the back. Hinges with removable pins were attached to the back so the pieces could be hooked together. The frames were then attached together forming a half-circle.

Next we used 1″ X 3″ boards to make a frame 6′ long by 3′ wide and covered it with cloth like the smaller frames. Then we used 1″ X 3″ X 6′ for the back uprights and bolted the frame crosswise across the top to make the backdrop for the theater. The upright boards were bolted to the end frames. The effect was similar to a PVC pipe theater.

PVC Pipe Frame Theater

This is our most often used theater which has 2″ X 6″ wood bases and a frame constructed out of 1 ½” PVC pipe that can be purchased at most hardware stores. Curtains are threaded over the pipes for the final look. There are many advantages to using this type of theater. They are durable, lightweight and portable, easy to assemble or disassemble, sturdy, easy to maintain, fairly inexpensive, and are not too difficult to make.

There are 6 different types of stages. Choose the one that best fits your needs, add some imagination and creativity, and see what happens.

A Look Back As NME Cancels Print Format Of Its Magazine

Yet another once popular magazine has taken victim to the Internet, as the New Musical Express will very soon exist in only an online form. The NME has published weekly since 1976, but its last print issue will be circulated on Friday March 16, 2018.

Because of that announcement inspired music columnist Bob Tannenbaum paid tribute to NME in Saturday’s edition of The News York Times, discussing his favorite acts who made the cover of the magazine during its forty year tenure. Oasis, the Stone Roses, the Strokes, Manic Street Preachers, and Mansun were the five acts he identified, but he had plenty of more to choose from.

For example, he could have mentioned David Bowie, the artist who appeared on more covers of NME than any other act. Some of the most memorable of those showed Bowie in his Ziggy Stardust incarnation, another with Iggy Pop and a third issue dedicated as an anniversary special.

Some of the most memorable covers are of people who only made the front of NNE on just one occasion, including tenured bands such as 10cc or short-lived talents like Secret Affair and the Housemartins. There is also an unusual non-musical personality among my favorites, the cover featuring famous film director Alfred Hitchcock.

Here are ten great recording acts who have appeared on numerous covers of NME, which has served kind of like a British version of Rolling Stone.

Morrissey

Moz made the front almost as much as Bowie, when you consider his appearances both as a solo artist as well as a member of the Smiths.

Elvis Costello

One of the greatest song writers of all time found himself on NME on nearly a dozen occasions, which is not surprising since he has been recording consistently for forty years.

John Lennon

Although he was assassinated just a few years after the magazine adopted its weekly format, Lennon’s image appeared frequently either by himself of with The Beatles.

The Clash

Joe Strummer made it several times as a solo act, but his punk band from the British New Wave appeared much more frequently.

The White Stripes

Seven times either the band or Jack White himself donned the front, an appropriate number for the nan who wrote Seven Nation Army.

Franz Ferdinand

In the year 2004 alone, these alt rockers made the cover four times.

Blur

The Gallagher brothers of Oasis would be happy to learn that this British rival group appeared few times, but Damon Alborn’s quartet enjoyed a lot less controversy during their Nineties heyday.

Bob Dylan

Rolling Stone featured this American icon on its cover twice as much, but NME still paid fair tribute to Dylan.

Beck

Alt rocker Beck appeared twice in one month, gracing the covers for two different weeks in November of 1998.

Arctic Monkeys

This British alt rock act has never really gotten its due in the United States, but its numerous front features on NME indicates its popularity in the United Kingdom.

4 Steps to Buying Modern Art

Step1

First you have to familiarize yourself with the major modern art movements. The major art moments are Art Deco, Impressionism, Fauvism, Expressionism, Art Deco , Art Nouveau, Cubism, Surrealism, Pop Art and Op Art. Knowing these movements will help you decide what you’re looking for and will direct you towards which artwork to purchase. A simple internet search will give you a vast amount of information for each of the movements and photo examples.

Step2

The second step it to identify which art movements you like best. Each modern art movement has its famous or brand artists. For example, some of the big names and their movements are Dali in Surrealism, Fauvism includes Matisse, Art Nouveau has Picasso and Impressionism has Monet. Knowing which art movement most interest you will help you narrow your art buying selection.

Step3

If you’re looking for art that will have a return on investment its best to stick with a well known modern artist. Many of these artists have pieces that will come up for sale at auction. An internet search will give you a good baseline of how much the works of your favorite artists are currently going for.

Step4

If you’re on a limited budget its best to purchase original modern paintings from talented emerging artists. The selection is readily available and he price difference is enormous. A good source of original modern artwork is contempogallery.com.

In conclusion, do your homework. A little legwork now will pay off big in the future. When it comes to researching your potential artists, the internet is your friend. Know what you like and know your artists.

Framed Art

By displaying framed art in your home or office, you are complimenting any room you place them in. The best aspect of framed art is that it is quick, easy and relatively inexpensive. Framed art is typically purchased to match décor in a person’s home. With such a huge selection available these days you are bound to find some that both interests you and will go perfect in your home.

One very common thing is for the artists to allow their work to be transferred into framed prints. Although this is not a new thing, many modern artists go unannounced to the world and this gives them the opportunity to be known. Pablo Picasso, Vincent Van Gogh, Claude Monet, and many other classic artists will live on through their artwork forever. Paintings tend to be more expensive than framed prints.

Building an appreciation for art helps a person to grow. Finding art pieces that you like will come more natural once you have starting looking at art. By appreciating the works that artists create you will start seeing the cultural aspect of life. Showing your admiration through buying of framed artwork can be both delightful and fulfilling.

Purchasing framed art for your home or office is a novel way to decorate. Framed prints are available of nearly every famous painting or photograph. But what piece do you buy? You can start with a neutral wall paint and then add color by placing framed art on the wall and then add some matching throw cushions to your couch. Framed art is relatively inexpensive, giving you the opportunity to change the look whenever you choose to. So consider buying framed artwork for every season or special event.

Framed art is a quick and easy solution to redecorating a room, for two reasons. One – because the selection of artists and prints is enormous. Two – framed art can be a copy of any type of artwork, including paintings, photographs, anything. Framed art is affordable and looks great when they are framed. Art Prints, can come either framed or unframed which can be an advantage when you do not like a frame that one piece of art is in. You can choose to make your framed art any way you wish.

How to Design Your New Garage

Many people spend years collecting the perfect pieces that add personal touches to their home. While the interior of your house might look like a Better Homes and Gardens cover, the garage often emulates the aftermath of a natural disaster. Reducing the clutter in your garage is essential, but imagine having a space that is inviting and functional at the same time. Follow these simple tips to create the garage of your dreams:

Consider Your Style

Are you a 1950s era buff? Love classic cars? Football fan? Or, do you crave the modern industrial look? These are all things to consider when determining what type of garage you want. Choosing a theme will help you decide what type of flooring, organization, cabinetry and accessories you want to add to your space.

Start With the Floor

There are literally tons of different garage flooring options. Between tile and epoxy floor coverings, versatility is king. Popular options are a black and white checkered tile floor for classic car or 1950s themes whereas something as simple as a high gloss epoxy that pops works well with modern and football themes. You can even mix and match if you’d like or add different textures to the floor. Get creative!

The Walls

Decorating your garage walls can be a lot of fun. Throw out all conventions when choosing the perfect paint color or design. Consider painting murals or if your style is a little less dramatic, try using different colored paints or geometric shapes. Your walls will really set the tone of your garage so think long and hard about the feeling you want to create.

Put the FUN Back in Functional

What good is this fabulous new garage if it’s simply an art piece? Part of making this space awesome is the ability to utilize it to its fullest. You’ll want to consider all your options for garage organization. Use numerous wall mounted racks to organize your tools and other miscellaneous items you have lying around. There are tons of styles to choose from and they are incredibly functional.

You’ll also need to determine the possibility of additional storage. Everything from bike racks to custom cabinetry is available to you so consider your needs and weigh them against your theme to choose the perfect addition to the area. For even more flare with your shelving, choose a custom finish that fits your style.

Accessorize

There’s nothing wrong with adding personal trinkets or memorabilia to your garage. Just because it’s not your living room doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be comfortable and inviting. Don’t be afraid to hang a picture or put up a poster as it’ll make you appreciate the space that much more.

Creating a garage you love is as simple as decorating any other room. You’ll want to look at paint and floor samples and get creative with your theme as well as accessories. Have fun with it and you’ll design a functional garage you’ll love to show-off.

Apartment Decor Ideas

Apartment Decorating Ideas

Whether you are in a temporary rental space or in your apartment home, just because you have a landlord doesn’t mean you can’t make it look like your own. Obviously you won’t be knocking down walls and remodeling but you can get creative with your furniture and home decor.

Create a theme or focal point

Often an apartment comes with very little charm and quite often not much of a view. White or beige walls can seem a bit boring but with some imagination you can fix that right up. I find that Photography is very effective in apartment living. Because we need a focal point and we don’t have a great view, I like to use a piece of Landscape Photography to set the mood. You can mount a large photograph of a nature scene, beach scene or cityscape in the middle of your living room and turn your apartment into a destination. An amazing photo of a luscious landscape full of color will make any apartment come alive. Like the city? Display a picture of the New York City Skyline at night.

The possibilities are endless.

Color

You usually can’t paint the walls when you are renting an apartment, so you have to get your color somewhere else. Window treatments such as curtains can be a great source of color for any room. You don’t have to spend an arm and a leg either. If you are using hand me down furniture or don’t have the budget for new, you can always color your couch with a cover or use colored fabrics on an end table to match and compliment the colors between curtain, couch and table.

Another reason Photographs are so great is that you can easily match a landscape scene or cityscape to any of the colors and accessories you already have. It’s not like finding a painting that doesn’t go with anything you own and have to build the room around it from scratch to make it work. You can find a photo on any topic in a range of colors.

I would also recommend the 3 panel triptych photo format because it tends to blend better with the room. The three equal sized frameless panels display more like a collection of pictures and have a softer effect in the room than a large framed piece of art which can be over powering.

Space

A big problem with apartment living is space or more accurately the lack of space. I think that there is a tendency to use more decorative items in a small space to make it seem warmer when less really is the answer. Well placed furniture, wall art and decor items with complimentary colors will make a room feel much larger and more elegant than a bunch of clutter any day.

So remember, Create a Focal Point – Choose your colors – Less is More

5 Things to Consider When Choosing an Animation Studio

Looking for a killer animated video for your company? You’re not the only one. There are many like you who must be adopting a strategy or following an effective way to create a high quality animated video. Lacking skills and experience may not allow you to do so. What are supposed to do now? Choose an animation studio that can give you a professional product for your business. It’s as simple as that!

But there are a lot of important things that you need to keep in mind when choosing the best studio for animation. Don’t you forget choosing the right studio can make you feel overwhelmed as there are plenty out there? Of course, you’re looking for a company that can understand what you’re looking for. Moreover, it should offer you feasible solutions and be able to create a high-quality video.

Here’s a list of five things to be considered when choosing an animation studio:

1. Portfolio – The most important thing you should consider is their portfolio. You need to ask yourself “Is their work effective enough so that it attracts the audience instantly?” We understand that it’s easy to get tempted by the show that animation studios put up on their website. You must avoid taking that as a complete, convincing factor.

You must ask a professional studio to show you their work portfolio. A good studio would have projects or portfolios they’ve handled in the past. These portfolios help people like you to review what all work has been handled by the experts with a reputable studio.

2. Testimonials – Want to cross-check authenticity of the animation studio you’re likely to hire? Make sure you check the reviews, ratings, and recommendations. By doing so, you’ll get an idea about the genuineness of the animation studio.

Don’t forget to check the testimonials as they play a very important role. Verifying testimonials will help you make a decision whether or not to hire the company for your short animated video.

3. Reasonable Costs – A professional animation studio should charge a reasonable amount for the services they’re serving their customers with. If you come across a studio with unusually low prices, it’s an indication of a red flag for a non-professional studio that provides inferior quality videos.

4. The Story – An animated video should be able to create a strong and an effective bond between the brand and the viewer. Considering this, it’s important for every character to be alive. You must pay attention to the details as you continue watching the samples. If you’re able to get the hidden message in the video, it shows the story was communicated in a proper way.

5. Contract – A reputable animation studio will require a contract that talks about specific terms for the project. These terms include project details, copyright issues, and payment terms.

Final Words

Choosing a professional animation studio is not a child’s play, but these things when considered will help you choose the best one with confidence. Need we say more?

Contemporary Ghanaian Performing Arts

Contemporary Ghanaian performing arts have been influenced by foreign culture, technology, and education. It is a synergy of the indigenous performing arts with the Western cultural forms of performing arts. There are three main forms of performing arts practiced by the Ghanaians today. These are music, dance, and drama.

Music

Ghanaian contemporary music has been influenced by foreign music styles and concepts though there is not a total eradication of the indigenous music styles. Some contemporary Ghanaian musicians blend the indigenous and foreign music styles in composing their songs. The foreign music styles that have influenced Ghanaian music today include jazz, pop music, Blues, Rock and Roll, Reggae, Ragga, R&B, Indian and Arabic songs. Contemporary Ghanaian music includes highlife which has more of the indigenous music elements, the hip-life which fuses slow lyric choruses with Ragga or rap music. Currently, there is the hip-pop music that is an exact rendition of the Western style of music though the lyrics and language are mostly Ghanaian in nature. There is also the church or choral music, brass band music, regimental or military music as well as the classical music.

Several foreign musical instruments are used hand in hand with the indigenous musical instruments. These include guitars, pianos, trumpets like the saxophone, foreign drums, cymbals etc. Unlike indigenous Ghanaian music, contemporary Ghanaian music is recorded in high technological recording studios where other artificial elements are added to the originally composed music to bring it to foreign standards. They are then copied on Compact Disks, DVD’S, VCD’S, EVD’S etc.

Contemporary Ghanaian music is played at theatres, church services, parties, concerts, dance halls, and parks. They are played during religious services to enhance praises and worship. They are also played during social functions like marriage feasts, sporting activities and the like to entertain those in attendance. During workshops, talks, and seminars, music is played to relieve stress and boredom during intermissions of the program. They are played to boost the morale of competitors in various forms of competitions. Others are played to educate us on morality, patriotism and nationalism. There are various music contest and competitions held in Ghana to promote music. These include TV3 Mentor, X-Factor, etc.

Popular contemporary Ghanaian music stars include Dr. Ephraim Amu who composed various Coral songs for the Ghanaian community. Others include Agya Koo Nimo, Cindy Thompson, Yaw Sarpong, Daddy Lumba, Kojo Antwi, Nana Acheampong, Obrafo, Sarkodie etc.

Dance

Contemporary Ghanaian dance, like music, has been influenced by foreign dance styles. Some of these foreign dance styles include cracking, electric boogie etc. Dance is performed to entertain people and to express their sentiments towards one another. Contemporary Ghanaian dance forms include quickstep, mambo, waltz, foxtrot, salsa, boogie, cha-cha-cha, robot movement, twist, break and now, Azonto. These dance styles are performed at various functions such as church, weddings, funerals, parties, durbars, and festivals etc. Several dance competitions are held today in Ghana to promote dancing such as the Malta Guinness Street Dance contest. Dancing is now a very lucrative enterprise in contemporary Ghana.

Drama

Contemporary Ghanaian drama is performed on a stage in a theatre. Unlike the indigenous Ghanaian drama where the audience sometimes interact with the audience while the performance is in season, contemporary Ghanaian drama is performed uninterrupted by the actors and actresses who play the various roles in the story depicted in the performance. The audience, however, participates by clapping, booing and shouting in a bid to express their sentiments towards the performance. Contemporary Ghanaian drama includes plays, comedies, operas, and cantatas.

Popular contemporary Ghanaian drama groups include the Abibigroma drama group, the National Dance Ensemble, Osofo Dadzie drama group, Adabraka drama Troupe and the Tsadidi drama group. Popular drama themes in contemporary Ghana include the ‘The Black African Slave Trade, by the National Dance Ensemble, ‘Ananse and the gun man’ by Joe deGraft, ‘The dilemma of a ghost’ by Ama Ataa Aidoo and the celebrated ‘Marriage of Anansewaa’ by Efua Sunderland.

Contemporary Ghanaian drama is staged in churches and mosques to illustrate some Christian themes to educate members about the Christian and Muslim doctrines and the relevance of leading a good moral life in line with the principles and regulations of God. During social gatherings, parties, and festivals, drama is performed to entertain those in attendance. Others are staged to educate the general public on social issues such as healthy living, personal hygiene, laws and norms of the land, patriotism and the like.