26,304 screws and six months later unique Marilyn Monroe portrait is ready for Sunderland display
A Sunderland artist has completed his labour of love and is to display it in the city centre during December.
As a tribute to his dad, Billy Timby, Darren Timby from Roker has created a portrait with a difference of film icon Marilyn Monroe.
The 6ft by 4ft picture is made from 26,304 screws which have been used as pixels. Each screw is 8mm in diameter and coloured black, red, grey or silver. The piece weighs over 13 stone and the screws would measure a kilometre if laid out end to end.
Billy was a huge fan of Marilyn’s and Darren says “He taught me everything I know”. Sadly, Billy succumbed to heart failure in January aged 77. To help deal with the grief, Darren threw himself into his art – and also became one of B & Q’s best customers.
Darren, 39, who runs a canvas print design company, found himself with more time to complete the work during lockdown, although it still took him six painstaking months.
The piece has already been a hit on social media any many viewers are looking forward to seeing it ‘in person’. A video of the final touches being added was posted on Friday, October 2 and received almost 9,000 views in just the first three days, with hundreds of comments and shares.
Although Darren is delighted with the final product, he’s also glad the work is over. But he is still thinking about the next project.
He said: “I’m having some time off from it now. There’s always Elvis to do. My dad was a big fan.
“But I’m tempted by a few thoughts of my own; like Freddie Mercury, David Bowie, Jim Morrison and the Gallaghers.
Darren lives with his partner Sarah Garside, 30. He has a son, Luke, 14 and daughter Belle, three. Although Darren did the bulk of the work, the picture was a genuine family effort.
He added: “Luke was over my shoulder a lot and always a great support. He’s artistic too. Belle helped by giving Marilyn a kiss.
“Sarah’s a permanent makeup artist and gave some great advice; especially with the eyebrows.”
The ingenious portrait will be on display in the Frederick Street Art Gallery, based in The Bridges shopping centre, throughout December.