06-1635_0002It’s all about that light…

Whereas at RPD we discuss with our customers the dynamics of how paint color and sheen reacts depending on lighting, sometimes the reality is a surprise.  Here’s a guide to how lighting will affect paint colors.

Realize these two points:

  1. Light absorbs objects: Black absorbs all colors; white absorbs none; blue absorbs red.
  2. Light sources: Natural light (sunlight) changes throughout the day and is affected by the room’s location. Artificial light changes with the type of bulb you use.

Sunlight Affects Colors

North-facing roomsLight in these rooms is cool and bluish. Bolder colors show up better than muted colors; lighter colors will look subdued.

South-facing roomsLots of high-in-the-sky light brings out the best in cool and warm colors. Dark colors will look brighter; lighter colors will virtually glow.

East-facing rooms: East light is warm and yellowy before noon, then turns bluer later in the day. These are great rooms for reds, oranges and yellows.

West-facing rooms: Evening light in these rooms is beautiful and warm, while scant morning light can produce shadows and make colors look dull.

Light Bulbs Affect Color

IncandescentsThe warm, yellow-amber light of these bulbs will make reds, oranges, and yellows more vivid, while muting blues and greens.

Fluorescents: This flat and cool light enriches blues and greens.

Halogens: These white lights resemble natural light and make all colors look more vivid. Using halogens would make the shift from daylight to artificial light less jarring.

Compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) CFLs can produce either a warm white, neutral, or bluish-white light.

Light-emitting diodes (LEDs):  You can buy warmer or cooler LEDs, and even “smart” LED bulbs whose color you can control wirelessly.

Tips for Achieving the Color You Want

  1. Paint squares of primed drywall with samples of the colors you’re considering, and then move them around the room during the day.
  2. Get a color approximation by placing a bulb you’ll be using in a floor or desk lamp.
  3. Remember that natural and artificial light will work together during certain times of day, especially in summer when dusk lasts a long time. Turn on artificial lights even during daylight to see what your colors will look like.
  4. Paint sheen also affects color. Glossy finishes will reflect light and change the way the color looks, whereas flat finishes are less reflective and allow colors to look truer under bright light.
  5. Light-colored walls can reflect the colors of bold carpets or outdoor greenery: A bright blue rug, for instance, can cast a bluish tone on a white wall.

Resources:  and



House Resuscitation

You know you may have waited too long to paint the exterior of your home when the paint on wood and stucco surfaces not only fades from sun exposure, but also becomes chalky  as paint fails with age.

During the preparation phase of this house, we found a lot of wood damage behind the gutters.  The carpenter and painters worked diligently on restoring the exterior; transforming it to looking like new again while updating the color.

Materials used on this home were Sherwin Williams Duration paint for the wood surfaces and Luxon High Build  paint for the stucco.  With the combination of these paints the homeowner should not have to worry about painting again for 10-12 years. (You can save money by  painting about every ten years rather than waiting till extensive wood damage occurs.)

5 Tips for Accent Wall Painting

We all look for that special something that can help our homes “pop” in a special way: taking it from drab to interesting.  Painting accent walls can help make this happen when it’s done right.  You can take an all-white living room or all that neutral beige to new heights.  However, making this happen isn’t quite as simple as slapping a coat of paint on one randomly chosen wall or ceiling.

1.  Find the ‘natural focal point’: Before you start make sure you’ve selected  the right statement-making accent wall. Figure out where the natural focal point in the room is  so you can make it more dramatic by painting the wall in a different color.

2.  Take accent wall inspiration from your room: from your inspiration piece, choose the color that stands out to you the most. Integrating how you’re painting your accent wall into the room’s color scheme will make it feel like one cohesive space, preventing the sometimes-jarring effect of accent walls.

3.  Select a muted tone when painting accent walls: You don’t want to go too bold when painting these walls. Nowadays muted tones are more desirable.

4.  Choose the right accent wall: Sometimes it’s a challenge picking a wall when there isn’t an obvious focus.  Some suggestions: In an oblong room, the best wall to accentuate is the farthest short (in width) wall.

Generally, the perfect accent wall should also have no windows or doors and be no more than one story tall

5.  Don’t get too matchy-matchy: Sure, you want your wall to work with your color scheme—but avoid matching too well

Need help in ideas and choosing walls/colors? Give RPD a call and we’ll assist you in the decision-making  process.


4 Factors that Shout: Your House Needs to be Painted!

It’s inevitable, exterior painted surfaces will either have to be repaired and/or repainted, depending on the age, construction, and frequency of homeowner maintenance.  Typically, new construction homes need to be painted sooner than one might think.  6-7 years is the usual rule due to poor materials used during the construction phase.  However, most individuals appear to wait too long between paint cycles creating opportunities for wood rot and water damage.

A good way to inspect your home is to examine it with a pair of binoculars or telephoto lens. Here are some tips on what to look for when determining whether your home needs painting/repairs:

  1. Signs of fading and discoloration of the painted surfaces.
  2. Wood damage determined by rippling effect on exterior surfaces or actual damage.  The wood becomes spongy.
  3. Opening of caulk lines at joints and trim work.
  4. For stucco surfaces be aware of hairline or larger cracks.  This allows water in and makes stucco surface look splotchy, especially noticeable after it rains.

Remember the longer you wait and allow damage to set in the more expensive it will be to repair it.  It’s better to have the painting done as soon as you notice the first signs of fading and discoloration, that way you avoid expensive repairs.

We put together a video showcasing repairs we made to a house that waited too long and required extensive wood replacements.  In the end, we made it look beautiful as well as optimally protected with expertly applied quality products.

4 Phases for this Showcase Home Remodel and Painting

This gallery contains 15 photos.

Our “showcase home” is about new homeowners who loved moving to Encino Park in San Antonio, TX, however they knew that this home needed updating and improvements before it could become their “dream home.” After hearing positive reviews of our company from friends and neighbors, they choose Renovate Paint and Design to help make this happen.