Tuesday, July 15, 2014

How Do You Pronounce Sarsaparilla?

This Sarsparilla poster was deemed a "shred" by its owner, but he sent it to us anyway hoping that we would be able to do something with it.

We love projects like this poster because it gives everyone a chance to flex their conservation and restoration muscles.We've seen and fixed posters in worse shape, but any chance to fix a piece with large areas missing and old, brittle paper is a challenge that we welcome.

The poster was linen backed first to stabilize the original paper and give our restoration artists a solid foundation on which to build.

The client opted to do full restoration, so we had to add paper onto the entire left side of the poster.

Although we have boxes of "throw away" vintage posters that we find or people give us, but it is rare to large sections of unprinted poster paper.  So for this patch job we made do with a several large patches instead of one long one. 

Seeing this, I do have to wonder what on earth is scrofula?! (It's an old name for tuberculosis, as it turns out!)
After prep comes masking and airbrushing. This is often one of the more dramatic stages of restoration. And one of the scariest for our clients to see, both in person and in pictures, because it often looks like we have covered their work in paint. To be fair, if we are airbrushing it, we have in fact covered certain areas in paint. But the hardest step to see is masking, which protects the areas of the poster that aren't going to be airbrushed. So, don't be alarmed by this next photo!

This is the only photo I managed to get, it was a busy day! However, it does demonstrate exactly why airbrushing is intimidating. The green background has been evenly sprayed over that area and the letters, including those that needed to be added back in, have been covered with acetate to protect them. Once the masking is removed, we have a seamless background color and a guide for adding the text back in.

After a few more rounds with the airbrush, the poster goes to detail in order to fix any small issues and add the final flourishes. And this was the end result:

The client was so thrilled with the finished piece that he emailed us to tell us this: " Hi. I received the sign and to say I'm overwhelmed is an understatement. Even knowing your reputation didn't prepare me for the job you did on that "shred" I sent you. You are truly highly skilled artisans. Some people I have shown it to even doubt its authenticity because of its pristine appearance and are convinced it is a reproduction. Please reassure me that the original piece I sent you is in there somewhere so I can confidently state that it is a restored original and not completely fabricated. I am sure I will do business with you wonderful people again."

Thank you so much for the support! And as you can see, while we did quite a lot of work on this old sign, most of the original was left to shine through with a little help from our restoration work!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Customer Thank you and Discount


Since our first days of service in 1996 we have restored well over 100,000 posters, fine art pieces, maps, newspapers, toy boxes, album covers and more.  We have created a legacy of precision, promptness, and professionalism that cannot be equaled.  Each piece we receive tells a story, a memory of loved ones passed, a time that reminds us of our youth, a city that we cherish and wear proudly on our sleeves.  Whatever your artwork means to you, it is equally as priceless to each one of us.  We are a restoration company, but more than that, we are here to help you tell your story to the next generation.   

 Let’s look over the past few years of your memories brought back to life.

 We would like to thank all of our clients for trusting us over the past 15 years with their memories.  We look to continue to do the incredible work we do with our all-star staff.  As a thank you, over the next 90 days (expires July 11, 2014), we want to offer our clients a 15% discount on all services for being so loyal and being a part of the Poster Mountain Family.

Please call us at 818.882.1214 or email us at postermount@aol.com if you have any questions.  
Please remember to like us on Facebook and share our blog.

Here is a sneak peek of our Next blog.  
Precision and Professionalism
Look for it in the next few weeks!

No task too small nor too dirty.  
We can do it.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Help! Wanted

 In July 1965, The Beatles released a song titled “Help!” with the ever so famous lines:

“Help me if you can, I'm feeling down
And I do appreciate you being round”

It was the fourth of six number 1 hits in a row for the English rock band.

Flash forward and take a leap of faith with me in that this song was written as foreshadow for Poster Mountain.  2014 quickly has become the year that John Davis needed just that, Help!
We now have four new employees that will be working to continue the great works of those before us in restoring and taking care of your precious posters and fine art.  Let’s quickly introduce you to them and talk about our first team project.

Pete –

Pete started working in graphics and art since the age of 20 and hails from Canada, eh?  Since starting in November, Pete has quickly acclimated to California and Poster Mountain where he is an integral part of the team because of his graphic design background and eye for artistic vision. 
To meet Pete and see his personal work, check out the link below.

Shelly – 

Shelly is born and raised in California and has been illustrating since she first picked up a pencil.  She graduated from California State University of Northridge with a bachelors in Design with an emphasis in illustration.  Over the past few years, she has incorporated new techniques which she is known for using in her artwork, much of which you can find in her blog, linked below.  As of March, Shelly has quickly found her place at Poster Mountain and brings great energy and quality workmanship to the company.

Julie – 

Julie is a restoration pro and is known for restoring anything and everything, from furniture to art.  She comes to us from previously working at an Art Gallery in Orange County where she has handled stretching, touch up, display, and much more.  She has been working in art for over 30 years and in January came over to Poster Mountain.  Julie says she completely understands the serious work in which we restore precious artwork and posters but absolutely loves the simple, pure, good natured energy of Poster Mountain and everyone that works here. 

Jason – 

To wrap up the list, it’s time to introduce myself.  I will be your narrator, asking you to join me in this journey as we restore and conserve artwork that range from artists such as Miro, Picasso, and Banksy to posters as old as the early 1900s and lithographs dating back to the 15th Century, treating them as our own with the utmost care.  I started my run at Poster Mountain as of April 1st and most people that come in know me as the “New Chelsea” (feel free to use that or Jason, I go by both)

I have a background in Business Management and since being employed here, I have truly realized how untalented I am by the incredible staff we have here at Poster Mountain.  I have background work in Photoshop and as a hobby/stress relief I love to sketch.  If there is anything you ever need, please let me know as I am here to assist.  

 This week, as a team, we took on remounting a 24 Sheet poster of The Beatles film, HELP! released in 1965.

We began the process by mounting a large canvas to the warehouse wall and applied a water soluble  adhesive with paint rollers.  During this process, John shared Poster Mountain's conservation guidelines which states that all projects and/or archived work have to reversible.

Quickly after applying the adhesive, we applied a linen backed paper to the canvas to further stabilize the poster once mounted.  

The linen paper is applied directly to the canvas and from there it becomes a race against drying.  Before the paper adheres to the canvas, we carefully push the paper from the center moving outward to remove any air bubbles and wrinkles.  This step is critical as the poster will be directly mounted to the paper and any flaws will be noticeable.

After carefully applying the linen paper we begin to treat the poster.  We will wash each sheet with a soap solution and water and remove any dirt, mold, or particles. 

In this photo, I am applying the soap solution and Robin is applying the adhesive to the back of the sheet.

I like to think that John is smiling because Help is officially here.

A difficult step in the process of mounting a 24 sheet is aligning each panel layering it with the previous.  John and Julie carefully place each sheet, one layered over the next so the artwork presents itself as one full panel.

Once this long process is completed, we let the poster dry.  This is when the communication channels open with our clients as to what further restoration work is needed and send photos of the progress

This is who we are and this is what we do.  We are very excited to be a part of the team and can not wait to get to working on your next project.  Contact us at postermount@aol.com if you need any restoration work and rest assured that it will be in the best of hands!