Before Paint (south side looking west)
Main room looking west.
I like the open joist space from an access standpoint, but the visual noise of the ceiling was distracting. I'd recently seen other basements with their exposed joists painted black and was impressed with how nicely it made things disappear - I decided to follow that course. I also (briefly) considered something on the white end of the color spectrum, but decided against it since lighter colors would be more likely to show dirt creeping through the sub-floor and other detritus. The very few examples I've seen that were painted white or sky-blue were more distracting and seemed contrived.