The Painter And Decorator of Cheltenham
Known as the Prince of the English Decorating School, Philip Garnham was a respected figure in his time. He is best known for his notable and influential work as a decorator and painter, but he was also an accomplished architect and engineer. His services to the British Army was legendary. He was often called upon to design entire battlefield post offices, painted to impress, as well as being an important force in the development of the engineering world.
Philip Garnham was born in 1840 in Cheltenham, in what was then the West Country. He spent much of his early life working in the mining fields of his day, including running a saw mill. It was there that he would begin to paint and decorate, often using methods and techniques that are now widely used today. He also learned to weld and made glass work. These skills would make him an important and useful man in his later years.
Philip worked for many years in the London Road area of Cheltenham, where he was highly regarded for his painter and decorator work. He was also particularly talented as a carver and sculptor. He was always open to new ideas and new styles, and he designed many beautiful dwellings and commercial buildings during his lifetime.
He had a unique style of mixed media, including painting large scale landscape paintings in full color, along with carving exquisite monuments and works of art.
One of his most famous pieces is the Lady Barn on Horse Bridge at Porth Wen, found in the River Calder. Although this famous piece has been preserved, other smaller works have also been produced in his lifetime.
Philip Garnham’s reputation for his creative work did not end with his death. He was posthumously appointed a Protectorate of Bath and Wells, and is today recognized as one of the greatest craftsmen of the period. He was also a worthy recipient of the Order of the British empire from Queen Victoria. Many people admire his illustrations for Dressing Room and The Surveyor’s Map, which both were produced soon after his death.
Philip’s son, John took charge of the business when Philip passed away in 1849. He continued in the family trade until the company’s death, and even remained in England long after his death. While selling off his possessions and the family business, he kept his faith in the Cheltenham method and continued to work until he was eighty-one years of age. He died at the age of eighty-four.
Known as a great decorator in Cheltenham, his work is widely appreciated in all walks of life. A special feature of his is that he never used outdated methods to decorate his homes.
Instead, he worked on innovative and stylish designs, which are still being carried out today.
His elegant style remains popular today, although more modern decorators have succeeded in imitating his achievements.
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