Tim and I painted and prepared the wood with an ultra smooth finish, laying on about 5 coats of paint to very precise instructions, each coat being a different type of paint and smoothing down each layer to a mirror-smooth finish before the next one was applied.
This work prepared the base for the trompe l'oeil painter who created a realistic marble top that matches the original hidden underneath the box, and now she is applying a design that will match the surrounding wall panels, which you can see at the back.
It looks great! I tweaked the contrast a bit to emphasise the shadows, but you can already see the realistic effect emerging on the flat surface.
See other "At work in Ham House scenes" in posts # 10, 12, 33, 49, 296, 08/06, 08/73, 08/78, 08/158, 08/167, 08/259, 08/265.