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Sharpie Marker Pens are usually employed in the humble design area of cartooning, poster design and autographs. Some have even coloured a few wigs with it, however, now it seems it has been taken to a whole new level. A man from the city of Lexington in Kentucky decided to design his basement walls with a Sharpie-drawn mural. Just ten dollars worth of the popular pen were needed to complete his epic endeavour.

Charlie Kratzer, 53, the associate general counsel for Lexmark, started working on the project when he was faced with rather insipid cream walls that did little for the aesthetic ambience. Rather than coating the walls with white paint, he set about using his natural creativity to first improve a small section of the room, and later, with the artistic juices flowing, the rest.

“People are amazed that with something as simple and inexpensive as a Sharpie, you can decorate a whole basement.” says Kratzer. “You can do a lot with it.”

The main theme of the mural is a replica of his upstairs library with added notable figures from history. These include Sir Winston Churchill in conversation with George Bernard Shaw; fictional detectives Hercule Poirot and Sherlock Holmes; the TV squirrel Rocky and his moose friend Bullwinkle; and also William Shakespeare. Poking their heads around a corner are the Marx Brothers whilst Joan Crawford rests in a chair.

At the doorway to the basement is a drawn image of the Impressionist artist Claude Monet, a figure of admiration for Kratzer who sees his own art work as a tribute to the great painter.

Pablo Picasso is another influence on the Kentucky lawyer, with one entire wall of the basement given over to a scene from a gathering at Picasso’s Paris salon in 1919. Also present on that wall are musical, cinematic and literary greats including Jean Cocteau, Erik Satie, Clive Bell and Olga Picasso.

Kratzer’s wife Deb is as equally enthusiastic saying, “I have the coolest husband. He’s so bright, and artistic on top of it.”

To see another Sharpie artist visit the website of Justine Ashbee.