Every piece of art starts with some type of inspiration. Whether it be something from nature, another artist’s work, or even thematic pieces, we draw ideas from all around us. And sometimes things are made very easy when a client wants something as specific as the image above!

The Lord of the Rings imagery is very unique and we were excited to do this piece – a hanging planter box featuring The Tree of Gondor. We cut it with our CNC plasma table from 16 gauge steel, then tig welded a trough on the bottom to hold plants, and finished the metal by sand blasting it before being doused in several applications of Sculpt Nouveau Black Magic patina. Lastly, a piece of opaque white acrylic was laid behind the cutout to finish the piece and make the image really pop. The final element that completed the vibe was the plants, because nothing says Lord of the Rings like some moss and vines! There is a sub layer in the trough to create drainage for the plants too, but the planter is sealed on the bottom so it won’t leak on our customer’s floor.

We love using patinas on pieces because there is so much that can be achieved. For this piece in particular, an old weathered and streaky finish was desirable, so we simply poured the patina over, let it sit and then used a sponge the create soaking wet lines to run down the surface. Then we applied around 4 coats of matte clear coat to seal in the finish and prevent discoloration and rusting. Being able to take a new-looking piece of steel and turn it into something with a genuine antique, rustic look is always great. Adding that extra touch can take a piece of art from looking generic and rather flat, to deep with texture and character.

The outcome of this project was a complete success. Our customer was absolutely ecstatic, and that’s exactly what we look to make happen each time we deliver work. And this functional piece of art will only get better with time as the plants grow and the vines creep around the sides and up the panel, truly enhancing the Lord of the Rings vibe!