Evolution of a family room/home theater
Ok, made some significant changes to the space (see pics in first post above) and I'll post a few pics here of the changes. I had trouble getting a pic with the screen down and the lights off (which is really a good thing...it means the space is darker). I think there are pics above showing the screen down before I made these changes.
The changes I've made are an attempt to split the difference between a dedicated theater and a multi-use family room. I'm pretty happy so far, but I still need to get rid of the ratty old off white carpet the house came with and install a nice medium brown wood floor.
1. I painted the ceiling a dark blue-green which goes with the darker tones in the mural.
2. I bought an inexpensive electric HC Gray screen which works well with some ambient light.
3. I installed a box to hide the screen housing and put a bamboo forest scene along it. The image is surrounded by 1/8" glow in the dark gaffers tape, 1/2" of blue green masking tape, and an inch of black felt tape (top and bottom of the mounting board. The glow in the dark tape is subtle but when I first turn the lights off, lower the screen, and turn the projector on it provides a nice light frame around the pic which you can just barely see in the dimming light.
4. I had an old bamboo screen that I wasn't using so I painted that blue green and mounted it to the right of the screen to hide the screen's power cord and control unit. It also serves to add a larger dark area the the right of the screen when it is down, improving the perceived projected image.