Why I am not a painter

Sunday 5 December 2004

West Space is holding its annual A4 fundraiser show this coming week. Opens Thursday 9 December, 6-9 pm, and stays open Friday Saturday Sunday. Details here. Yes, I’ve put some artwork in it which I am pleased to think might sell by appealing to the punters’ sense of chairty, if not their aesthetics. They also have good art for sale.

My last attempt to make a painting was not entirely happy. Having promised to paint something for an exhibition due the next day, I found an old box of cheap Chinese foil tubes of oil paints. Most of them had partly or completely dried out, and split open when I tried to squeeze some paint out of them. At least I got blue and yellow, two thirds of the primary colours. Also, I found a brush, which was useful. It was sufficiently frayed at both ends to make me spend a few seconds figuring out which was designed for applying paint. When I started painting I remembered that (a) oil paint needs thinner and (b) I don’t have any thinner. It was a very thickly-textured painting, and may still be drying to this day. The next revelation was that when you need to change colours, the brush has to be rinsed out (cf. points a and b, above). A solution of Sard Wonder Soap does the job nicely, but don’t expect it to improve the consistency of your paint.

Having admitted all this, it’s good to know that I’m still an artist. I have the survey letter from Macquarie University’s Economics Department that proves it.