Wednesday, December 11, 2013

The Chinese pharmacy

That was a big challenge as the project had only started with pictures of old buildings I had photographed in old Chinatown in Bangkok. 

Today the interior of the shop is almost finished. This is what it looked like, an empty box.

 To get the "aged" feeling, I sprayed different shades of grey on the walls and the floor to get the aspect I wanted.

When the paint was dry, I used black shoe polish with a shoe brush. After a while, it started to look like old cement

I sprayed black paint on the different pieces of furniture, but now the cabinets looked like furniture from Ikea, LOL

As my intention was to create an old pharmacy, I looked for a way to age the different parts. 

For facades, I use different layers of acrylic with a sponge but I felt it wouldn't work here. 

And I had this idea, I wanted  dusty cabinets, so I used brown foundation powder with a soft brush and it worked. 

Now the cabinets look old and dusty. It's just perfect, it looks like dust but it's not!

It took me a while to fill all the miniature glass jars with different powders I found in the kitchen. Now salt, sugar, flour, pepper, herbs have become Chinese medicines. I also noticed Chinese pharmacy were filled with packets wrapped in brown paper. They must contain herbs and strange powders. I have to make another thirty brown packets to fill the shelves.

As you can see, I didn't have enough drawers pulls ( I needed 100!) but luckily Rosa  from Taiwan contacted the factory which makes them and I should receive the missing ones this week!

I didn't forget a representation of Buddha on its altar. Everyday, the owner will offer fruits and incense to their God.

Another characteristic of shops in Asia are the pictures of the King, Rama 4 here and of the ancestors of the owner that are always displayed in the shops

Unlike our pharmacies, Chinese pharmacy are quite dusty and messy with bags and trays with plants for sale everywhere. I'll'll have to add more. But the smell is already there with the odour of cloves (though it reminds me of the dentist's clinic)and herbs.

The counter is covered with things you really see in pharmacies. each prescription is prepared on white paper. The paper is then folded and given to the patient. I need to find a proper scale and an abacus of course. Any ideas?

By the way, the mortar is far too big and it is not the right shape or texture,. They are carved in grey granite. This one is to make sumtam or papaya salad (one of my favourite Thai dishes)
 I need to make a smaller one with clay when I have time and this mortar will go in the kitchen corner in the room above.

The wall outside is showing now Thai old posters but I haven't worked too much on that side of the building yet.

Now this is what the building looks like.
 Felix, the new cat (the 4th stray I adopt) is very proud of it and always try to get inside!

When night falls, the Chinese lanterns give another dimension to the building

Next, the room above...
Thank you for reading my post and wish you all the best.

Patrick in Lopburi, Thailand


  1. Bonjour Patrick ,

    Je suis désolée d'avoir supprimé un commentaire sur votre précédente page . Je n'avais pas vu que j' écrivais avec la page traduite avec Google et celui ci a traduit mon texte écris en français ...en français Google , hihi , le message était devenu suréaliste . Je ne pouvais pas laisser le résultat . Et je n'ai pas eu le temps de recommencer .
    J'aime votre pharmacie . Je trouve les meubles supers . Comment avez vous fait ? Ils sont très élégants et fins . Le rendu est parfait . La poussière aussi , et c'est pas facile . C'est un ensemble magnifique . Les lanternes chinoises me plaisent . Quand l'ensemble est éclairé , c'est magique ! Bienvenue au 4 eme adopté . Il n'a pas l'air trop malheureux . Merci pour les verres et les carafes . J'aime savoir qu' ils viennent de si loin . Ils sont pourtant si français . Haha !
    Dans le post supprimé , je vous disais qu'il fallait un tapis pour finir votre salle à manger . Obligatoire avec de tels rideaux . L'absence de tapis serait une faute de goût terrible .
    Bonne continuation ,


  2. Hello Patrick,
    Absolutely fantastic work! the ageing techniques you used are terrific. the finished are beautiful and very realistic. Every item is just perfect and the pictures look like a real life picture, not miniature. Amazing work! Your attention to detail is remarkable!
    big hug,

  3. très sympa , il a bien de la chance ce 4ème chat d'être adopté .

  4. Hi Patrick! Lovely work and thank you for telling the story and history behind these shops. I't very easy to feel the atmosphere...You've done a fantastic job so it's no wonder that Felix is very proud! Take care!

  5. Your pharmacy is perfect! I like every detail. And what to say about the lights.....
    You are a master in creating atmospheres!


  6. Patrick, it's absolutely incredible! I'm totally blown away by your work. Great job!

  7. Bonjour Patrick
    Votre pharmacie est fantastique, j'aime tous les détails aussi bien dans l'intérieur que l'extérieur. Très belle atmosphère général. Patricia

  8. Patrick you've outdone yourself I love how you put a little Kitty in your scene, it's fantastic :)
    I can't wait to see what you do upstairs

    Marisa :)

  9. C'est vraiment extraordinaire, quel talent! Je me demande bien ce qu'il va y avoir à l'étage.

  10. Thank you for sharing and explaining this wonderful Chinese pharmacy. It's stunning!
    Hugs, Drora

  11. Bravo! C'est magnifique. On a l'impression Ue le pharmacien va arriver d'un instant à l'autre. L'effet vieilli est très bien réalisé et j'adore l'atmosphère qui se dégage.

  12. Es impresionante!!! Has logrado un realismo absoluto,tanto en la construcción como en la atmósfera que rodea el interior de la farmacia!!!

  13. This is phenomenol work, I could spend a day looking at this pharmacy and imagining all of the history and stories it could tell. Beautiful!

  14. Bonjour Patrick,
    Ta pharmacie est très bien réussie. J'aime beaucoup. Comment as-tu fais tous les petits pots de verre?
    A bientôt.

  15. It is so beautiful Patrick! With the lights on it really does emphasize its beauty, I can only imagine how enchanting it is looking at it in real life at night... The pharmacy itself turned out great, I love it, it is so realistic, and you've paid great attention to detail! Another succesful project (saw your article in Dolls House Magazine UK by the way, very nice to read about you!), and there will be many more I'm sure!

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