Star Ceilings... Painted or Fiber optics? - Page 37 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1081 of 1123 Old 01-13-2016, 07:29 PM - Thread Starter
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Taking pictures in the dark

Nice job on capturing the mural.

I need to learn how to get the flash to shoot at the end of the long exposure to get the room. I've been taking pics in the light and dark and then doing a composite. This seems much easier to do.

Maybe I should hang out here a little more (if I ever had a second)... it might make some of what I do easier.

Looks great!

Jeff



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Originally Posted by damelon View Post
That's what I did. Turn the lights on, focused on other objects around the ceiling, turn the lights off. It ended up being a long exposure but did a flash at the end so the theater itself was visible, and the light from the stars was visible. That was with a Nikon D5300, Tripod, Aperture Mode @ F8, Default ISO, Slow Flash. I even left my soffit lights on at low.

Tripod is a MUST. I wanted to try some longer exposures without the lights, but I had to get a manual timer to do that. I haven't tried it yet though.

Here is a link to more of the same picture group as below : The "Bacon Race" Theater / Patio / Bar Project


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post #1082 of 1123 Old 01-13-2016, 10:27 PM
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The stencil is really only accurate if you want to put the constellations in their correct locations. The background stars, what gives the murals the 3D look are the important stars in the mural... and that's where I think the stencils really shine.

But, if you still want to freehand it... then try dipping your Q-tip into the paint (not the entire head... maybe 3/4), press it against the surface where you'd like it to go and then rotate the Q-tip. That will get the paint onto the ceiling and then you can put your Q-tip back into the paint and swirl it around a little until it's the size that you want it to be.

I'd suggest a toothpick for the smaller stars.

Hope that helps.

Jeff
yes it does, thank you. i was actually planning on toothpicks for background, and q-tips for the close/big ones. but when i did my test, the q-tip almost seemed too small! i think i was being too frugal with the paint, or the cheap q-tips aren't 'fluffy' enough to soak up any paint.

i'm curious about the stencil comment though. i assumed it was more about getting 'accurate' placement for constellations, and helping with getting the 'density' of stars in a certain area right so it doesn't look empty or crowded. but it sounds like you're saying it'll be difficult to distinguish between close and distant stars without it? do the stencils help with dot size? i'm just not understanding how they would affect the 3d effect.

sounds like i need to do more research maybe

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post #1083 of 1123 Old 01-14-2016, 01:33 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by fierce_gt View Post
yes it does, thank you. i was actually planning on toothpicks for background, and q-tips for the close/big ones. but when i did my test, the q-tip almost seemed too small! i think i was being too frugal with the paint, or the cheap q-tips aren't 'fluffy' enough to soak up any paint.
Yep, you've got it right. Those should work just fine. You can always look around for something similar (tooth paste, cold cream, etc) to use to practice with. Yes, the paints can get expensive when really good pigments are used. Then, once you think that you have it down the way you want... then you can start in with the glow paint.



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Originally Posted by fierce_gt View Post
i'm curious about the stencil comment though. i assumed it was more about getting 'accurate' placement for constellations, and helping with getting the 'density' of stars in a certain area right so it doesn't look empty or crowded. but it sounds like you're saying it'll be difficult to distinguish between close and distant stars without it? do the stencils help with dot size? i'm just not understanding how they would affect the 3d effect.
The constellation sheets are good to help you get the constellations right, and also have them close to the correct size. The other sheets (for the background stars) are there to help you get the stars placed in a way that the stars don't look like they were painted in a grid pattern, and so that they look natural. It really is more difficult to freehand them and get them to look natural, than you'd think. So, the background stars sheets are for that... to get them in the correct locations to look natural.

No, the stencils for the background stars will not help you get the sizes of the stars right... Getting the sizes of the smaller stars to work right is a combination of the tools, the paint, and the instructions on using them both together. Every person paints differently, even with the instructions I hope they will follow... but usually that only translates into some using more paint, while others use less. Still, the stars usually come out great for everyone.

Email me if you would like more info on the stencil. If you decide to go ahead and freehand it... good luck, use those tools that we discussed and take your time. Paint, lay on the floor, look at the ceiling. Get up and paint some more, lay on the floor, look at what you've done and then continue. It can be done, by the brave at heart... the stencil is only there in case you don't want to try it alone, and/or you want to do it just once.

Good luck.

Jeff
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post #1084 of 1123 Old 01-14-2016, 05:36 AM
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Sorry, I saw your post on my phone last night and came here today to reply (from the computer)... but you beat me to it. Yep, they are black lights. They are good lights. Just be sure to check them when they arrive.

I've had more than a few people tell me that some of the lights that they bought through SlimFluorescents didn't work when they arrived. As long as you let them know right away they have seemed to make good on them.

One customer wasn't ready to install them at the time of arrival, so he stuck them in a back room for a few months. Then, when he went to install them, about half weren't working... nor would they replace them. I understand why, but just make sure you check.

Once you get all lights that work... you should be fine.

If, on the other hand, you don't want to hassle with having new lights sent out, and you don't mind paying double the price... you can always get them from WildFireFX

Glad you found out the info!

Jeff

Thanks for the info! I'm going to order the lights today. What's the maximum spacing between lights? I have a 12' side (thinking two 4', do I need a 24" in between?) , I have 2 16' sides (3 -4' lights per side). They add up fast so I'd like to order as few as possible but I don't want the output to suffer.
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post #1085 of 1123 Old 01-14-2016, 08:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NightSkyMurals View Post
Nice job on capturing the mural.

I need to learn how to get the flash to shoot at the end of the long exposure to get the room. I've been taking pics in the light and dark and then doing a composite. This seems much easier to do.

Maybe I should hang out here a little more (if I ever had a second)... it might make some of what I do easier.

Looks great!

Jeff
Thanks! Trust me it was a pain. Originally I kept trying to do long exposures with no flash at all and had horrible luck getting the light to capture. I had to keep the black light from the floor on during the photos, and that really helped capture the star-light in the photo. It is really hard to express how something looks in a photo compared to what you see in person. I'm horrible at photography, I basically have only ever taken photos using the AUTO setting, so this was my first attempt at something. I didn't even want the slow flash at the end, I just couldn't figure out how to get the flash off on this camera during the long exposure. Fortunately, it turned out the way I wanted. The black light is why you see some purple tinting on some of the red paint areas around the lights. I did do some post-photo editing on things like sharpness, brightness, contrast to get it to look right and it really helped.
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post #1086 of 1123 Old 01-14-2016, 05:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NightSkyMurals View Post
Yep, you've got it right. Those should work just fine. You can always look around for something similar (tooth paste, cold cream, etc) to use to practice with. Yes, the paints can get expensive when really good pigments are used. Then, once you think that you have it down the way you want... then you can start in with the glow paint.





The constellation sheets are good to help you get the constellations right, and also have them close to the correct size. The other sheets (for the background stars) are there to help you get the stars placed in a way that the stars don't look like they were painted in a grid pattern, and so that they look natural. It really is more difficult to freehand them and get them to look natural, than you'd think. So, the background stars sheets are for that... to get them in the correct locations to look natural.

No, the stencils for the background stars will not help you get the sizes of the stars right... Getting the sizes of the smaller stars to work right is a combination of the tools, the paint, and the instructions on using them both together. Every person paints differently, even with the instructions I hope they will follow... but usually that only translates into some using more paint, while others use less. Still, the stars usually come out great for everyone.

Email me if you would like more info on the stencil. If you decide to go ahead and freehand it... good luck, use those tools that we discussed and take your time. Paint, lay on the floor, look at the ceiling. Get up and paint some more, lay on the floor, look at what you've done and then continue. It can be done, by the brave at heart... the stencil is only there in case you don't want to try it alone, and/or you want to do it just once.

Good luck.

Jeff
thanks a bunch. you're a good man to provide all this info to help me not use your product, haha. i'll see how it goes on a small patch, then maybe we'll talk about stencils

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post #1087 of 1123 Old 01-14-2016, 05:52 PM
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Think florescent painted mural and black lights. A local restaurant did this in their bar and it looks like you are having cocktails outside on a summer night. It is amazing.

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post #1088 of 1123 Old 01-15-2016, 11:04 AM - Thread Starter
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Lights for charging a Night Sky Mural

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Originally Posted by cdy2179 View Post
Thanks for the info! I'm going to order the lights today. What's the maximum spacing between lights? I have a 12' side (thinking two 4', do I need a 24" in between?) , I have 2 16' sides (3 -4' lights per side). They add up fast so I'd like to order as few as possible but I don't want the output to suffer.

If you haven't ordered the lights yet... please let them know that you were referred by Night Sky Murals. They change people over there (a lot it seems) and I want them to know the name... so that when others are referred there, they'll take special care of them. And, ask for the 10-15% discount that the first guy used to give my customers.

I would suggest putting a 2' light on all your walls... not so much for charging purposes, but for a cleaner, more unbroken look when you have the black lights on. Not only are they great for charging the paint, but they also create a nice look in the room. So, go for those, if possible. If not... I doubt that the charging of the paint will suffer. If you see patches of very charged up paint (right above the lights) and what looks like not-so-charged-up-paint where there are no lights... just wait about 10-15 minutes and the paint will all even out.

Good luck!

Jeff
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post #1089 of 1123 Old 01-15-2016, 11:07 AM - Thread Starter
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Well, I love the pictures and so glad that you've shared them. And, your non-ability to shut that flash off has got me wanting to try that too. Thanks again!!!

Jeff



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Originally Posted by damelon View Post
Thanks! Trust me it was a pain. Originally I kept trying to do long exposures with no flash at all and had horrible luck getting the light to capture. I had to keep the black light from the floor on during the photos, and that really helped capture the star-light in the photo. It is really hard to express how something looks in a photo compared to what you see in person. I'm horrible at photography, I basically have only ever taken photos using the AUTO setting, so this was my first attempt at something. I didn't even want the slow flash at the end, I just couldn't figure out how to get the flash off on this camera during the long exposure. Fortunately, it turned out the way I wanted. The black light is why you see some purple tinting on some of the red paint areas around the lights. I did do some post-photo editing on things like sharpness, brightness, contrast to get it to look right and it really helped.
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post #1090 of 1123 Old 01-15-2016, 11:08 AM - Thread Starter
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Taking pictures of a Night Sky Mural - Not easy!

Well, I love the pictures and so glad that you've shared them. And, your non-ability to shut that flash off has got me wanting to try that too. Thanks again!!!

Jeff



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Originally Posted by damelon View Post
Thanks! Trust me it was a pain. Originally I kept trying to do long exposures with no flash at all and had horrible luck getting the light to capture. I had to keep the black light from the floor on during the photos, and that really helped capture the star-light in the photo. It is really hard to express how something looks in a photo compared to what you see in person. I'm horrible at photography, I basically have only ever taken photos using the AUTO setting, so this was my first attempt at something. I didn't even want the slow flash at the end, I just couldn't figure out how to get the flash off on this camera during the long exposure. Fortunately, it turned out the way I wanted. The black light is why you see some purple tinting on some of the red paint areas around the lights. I did do some post-photo editing on things like sharpness, brightness, contrast to get it to look right and it really helped.
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post #1091 of 1123 Old 01-15-2016, 11:15 AM - Thread Starter
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thanks a bunch. you're a good man to provide all this info to help me not use your product, haha. i'll see how it goes on a small patch, then maybe we'll talk about stencils

I enjoy helping out, even if it means I won't make a sale. It all works out in the end, and if the only way for someone toconcider getting a night sky on their ceiling is to do it themselves... then that works for me too. I just think that everyone should have a night sky to look at whenever they want, not just when they are far out in the country. So, I help.

Good luck, and shot me an email with questions, or if you make it through... with pictures.

Jeff
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post #1092 of 1123 Old 01-15-2016, 11:18 AM - Thread Starter
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Fluorescent paint vs Glow paint for mural

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Originally Posted by Pacodutaco View Post
Think florescent painted mural and black lights. A local restaurant did this in their bar and it looks like you are having cocktails outside on a summer night. It is amazing.
That sounds awesome! I get asked all the time about painting in that type of situation, but a bar would usually have too much light for my mural to work out well, if at all... so I try talking them out of having me paint for them. But, fluorescent paints are perfect in that situation, and I've seen some amazing work by real artists (that's not me).

Jeff
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post #1093 of 1123 Old 01-15-2016, 12:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NightSkyMurals View Post
If you haven't ordered the lights yet... please let them know that you were referred by Night Sky Murals. They change people over there (a lot it seems) and I want them to know the name... so that when others are referred there, they'll take special care of them. And, ask for the 10-15% discount that the first guy used to give my customers.

I would suggest putting a 2' light on all your walls... not so much for charging purposes, but for a cleaner, more unbroken look when you have the black lights on. Not only are they great for charging the paint, but they also create a nice look in the room. So, go for those, if possible. If not... I doubt that the charging of the paint will suffer. If you see patches of very charged up paint (right above the lights) and what looks like not-so-charged-up-paint where there are no lights... just wait about 10-15 minutes and the paint will all even out.

Good luck!

Jeff
I wanted to have the lights on at times and felt an almost continuous light (kinda like rope lights) would look better. I ended up with 8- 4' lights, 3 -32" lights and 2 -2' lights. It wasn't cheap to say the least... I asked if they could give me a discount and they said none were available.


I should be able to the charge the paint in no time..
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post #1094 of 1123 Old 01-15-2016, 12:21 PM - Thread Starter
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OK, good. Yep... you should have the paint charged up in no time. Too bad about the discount. They were offering one to NSM customers, but then I heard some crotchety person took over and it stopped. So, I'll see if I can find a third company to recommend. And, yes, the rope lights will be good for a continuous look.

Jeff


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Originally Posted by cdy2179 View Post
I wanted to have the lights on at times and felt an almost continuous light (kinda like rope lights) would look better. I ended up with 8- 4' lights, 3 -32" lights and 2 -2' lights. It wasn't cheap to say the least... I asked if they could give me a discount and they said none were available.


I should be able to the charge the paint in no time..
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post #1095 of 1123 Old 01-15-2016, 12:30 PM
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OK, good. Yep... you should have the paint charged up in no time. Too bad about the discount. They were offering one to NSM customers, but then I heard some crotchety person took over and it stopped. So, I'll see if I can find a third company to recommend. And, yes, the rope lights will be good for a continuous look.

Jeff
I wont have any rope lights just enough UV lights to look like it...being pretty continuous. When I googled the slimflourescent website I read tons of bad reviews from employees. Looks like those in charge over there don't treat the employees very well. Still the price is actually really good compared to wildfire... basically half.

The hardest part was finding a light thin enough to sit into the crown and not be visible. 3/4"x1-3/4" is perfect. The slim ones at blacklight.com are way too big at 2"x2.25".
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post #1096 of 1123 Old 01-15-2016, 12:46 PM - Thread Starter
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Well, that kind of goes with what I've heard from other customers too. I don't know anything first hand, and my first contact with them was fine... but from the sound of it, it's not a great thing. That's one reason that I've pretty much stopped promoting them too. But, as long as you get all your lights checked out and they work... you should be fine. And, while the price isn't cheap... it is better than other options.

Still working on tracking down a good supplier for LED, UV strip lights that give off a 365nm light.

Thanks for the info!

Jeff




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I wont have any rope lights just enough UV lights to look like it...being pretty continuous. When I googled the slimflourescent website I read tons of bad reviews from employees. Looks like those in charge over there don't treat the employees very well. Still the price is actually really good compared to wildfire... basically half.

The hardest part was finding a light thin enough to sit into the crown and not be visible. 3/4"x1-3/4" is perfect. The slim ones at blacklight.com are way too big at 2"x2.25".
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post #1097 of 1123 Old 01-15-2016, 01:03 PM
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Well, that kind of goes with what I've heard from other customers too. I don't know anything first hand, and my first contact with them was fine... but from the sound of it, it's not a great thing. That's one reason that I've pretty much stopped promoting them too. But, as long as you get all your lights checked out and they work... you should be fine. And, while the price isn't cheap... it is better than other options.

Still working on tracking down a good supplier for LED, UV strip lights that give off a 365nm light.

Thanks for the info!

Jeff
They did confirm that they will replace any broke fixtures with no charge to me. Over the phone they seemed very nice and were helpful (I called 3 times with various questions) and had $4.95 shipping.
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post #1098 of 1123 Old 01-16-2016, 03:18 PM
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I'm currently planning the soffit/light tray for my dedicated theater. I plan to have a rope light and UV lights in the tray. I ran wiring for 1 switchable outlet in the tray for the rope lights. Should I also add an additional switched outlet for the black lights ?

I have been admiring Jeff's work and hope I can get him out to the Northwest sometime in the future to paint me a mural .

Mike
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post #1099 of 1123 Old 01-17-2016, 12:30 AM
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I'm currently planning the soffit/light tray for my dedicated theater. I plan to have a rope light and UV lights in the tray. I ran wiring for 1 switchable outlet in the tray for the rope lights. Should I also add an additional switched outlet for the black lights ?

I have been admiring Jeff's work and hope I can get him out to the Northwest sometime in the future to paint me a mural .

Mike
i definitely would. it's going to be a lot easier to do it now than later, and there will probably be times when you only want one or the other on. and if not, it's only a few bux in materials you 'wasted'
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post #1100 of 1123 Old 01-17-2016, 03:25 PM
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Thanks fierce-gt. I will add an additional switched receptacle for the black lights. I looked at wildfirefx.com and it looks like you can daisy chain their black lights from just 1 receptacle around the perimeter of your light tray.
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post #1101 of 1123 Old 01-17-2016, 06:46 PM
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Hey guys, I'm about to order a kit for my new HT room. The ceiling will be black or at least close. What color are most of you using? Black, dark blue etc???
I must have missed the site/link where you bought the star ceiling kit? Thanks a bunch.
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post #1102 of 1123 Old 01-17-2016, 08:25 PM
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I must have missed the site/link where you bought the star ceiling kit? Thanks a bunch.
Night sky murals. I actually will have it lit up this week when the lights come in, everything is done and just waiting on the lights. I took pics along the way including a shelf the lights will sit on inside the crown. I'll post all of this within the week.
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post #1103 of 1123 Old 01-20-2016, 12:11 PM - Thread Starter
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They did confirm that they will replace any broke fixtures with no charge to me. Over the phone they seemed very nice and were helpful (I called 3 times with various questions) and had $4.95 shipping.

OK, great! Glad they took care of you. Just remember to check the lights when they arrive.

Jeff
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post #1104 of 1123 Old 01-20-2016, 12:17 PM - Thread Starter
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YES! As fierce_gt mentioned already, yes... it's easy to do now, only costs a few extra $$$ and you will be mucho happy that you did it.

You can then put your rope lights on a dimmer switch and the black lights on an On/Off switch (you don't want your black lights on a dimmer).

I added only one outlet to my office soffit (which I then split to work on two outlets). Don't do that. I wish that I'd have added two outlets that went to each switch... just to have more options. I actually wanted that, but my "contractor" didn't see the value in it and chose to ignore that request. Grrrrrrr!!!

Remember that with the WildFire lights... you can connect up to 10 lights, so depending on how many lights you are putting up there, you might need to take that into consideration too.

Good luck!

Jeff




Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptCrunch View Post
I'm currently planning the soffit/light tray for my dedicated theater. I plan to have a rope light and UV lights in the tray. I ran wiring for 1 switchable outlet in the tray for the rope lights. Should I also add an additional switched outlet for the black lights ?

I have been admiring Jeff's work and hope I can get him out to the Northwest sometime in the future to paint me a mural .

Mike
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post #1105 of 1123 Old 01-20-2016, 12:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Night Sky Murals DIY stencil kit

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Originally Posted by jumarapol View Post
I must have missed the site/link where you bought the star ceiling kit? Thanks a bunch.

Yep... I offer one for the DIY'er.

Jeff
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post #1106 of 1123 Old 01-21-2016, 12:45 PM
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Re: Kit

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Originally Posted by NightSkyMurals View Post
Yep... I offer one for the DIY'er.

Jeff

Hi Jeff,

How much is the kit?

Jumar
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post #1107 of 1123 Old 01-21-2016, 01:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jumarapol View Post
Hi Jeff,

How much is the kit?

Jumar
Try the Stencil Info link ^
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Is it solipsistic in here, or is it just me?
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post #1108 of 1123 Old 01-21-2016, 01:24 PM - Thread Starter
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DIY Night Sky Murals stencil kit

Hi Jumar... Bill already posted a link (Thanks Bill) which will take you to a simple page that goes over the kit in a little more detail, plus has pricing info. So, you can click the link that he provided, or just go to www.NightSkyStencils.com

Jeff


Quote:
Originally Posted by jumarapol View Post
Hi Jeff,

How much is the kit?

Jumar
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post #1109 of 1123 Old 01-21-2016, 01:53 PM
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Going to give this a shot
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post #1110 of 1123 Old 01-21-2016, 03:20 PM - Thread Starter
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For anyone looking into getting black lights to charge up their mural, or for any other reason... I just hear back from WildFireFX, letting me know that they will give NSM customers a 10% discount on the lights. Savio Lighting (SlimFluorescents) won't offer any discount at all.

I get nothing when anyone orders lights... I just wanted to see if I could get these companies to offer a discount, since so many of my customers are getting the black lights.

The only stipulation (from WildFire) is that the order needs to be over $1000. So, it won't work for everyone, but for some of you guys.

If they don't know what you're talking about.. ask for Amanda. She's the girl who got the OK to offer the discount.

Jeff
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