top of page
  • Writer's pictureMadeleina Kay

Read the fucking paint tube labels - they're there for a reason, idiot.

Updated: Feb 21

An important lesson has been learnt - if you paint whilst drunk, it's going to end in a mess.



Since I got my attic "studio" back, I decided to have one of my "thoughtlessly-throwing-paint-at-a-canvas" sessions last week, but made the mistake of doing it whilst slightly drunk (which usually makes it more fun, but a lot messier). The process goes something like this:

  • Squeeze paint out of tubes directly onto canvas.

  • Smear paint with large brushes.

  • Squeeze more paint out of tubes into a palette.

  • Use smaller brushes to throw paint at canvas.

  • Clear up mess.



It had been my intention to make this painting in acrylics, since I have recently been making abstract paintings with oil paints focusing on layers and texture - and this time I wanted to focus on colours. Also, because I have run out of white spirit. However, I realised when I went to clean my brushes in the kitchen sink, that the blue was not coming off because I had in fact used a tube of blue oil paint like an absolute idiot who doesn't know how / can't be bothered to read labels. I think my mistake was assuming that I am more orgnaised than I actually am - as I keep my acrylic and oil paints in seperate boxes but clearly some tubes had gone awry (I sorted through the box of acrylic paint after this incident and found several more oil paints in there). The oil paint was also all over my hands and I had no white spirit to clean it off with. To make matters worse, the closest shop where I usually buy white spirit from, had conveniently run out... So, I still haven't managed to clean the brushes. And irritaingly the painting will take a lot longer to dry than originally intended... At least the blue section will.



To me, colours (and musical chords for that matter) are associated with specific emotions. And I had a vague idea with this painting, that I wanted to use the sections of colour to convery transitions between the array of emotions. I'm not sure how effectively I did this, the painting to me looks like an explosion of emotional disregulation. I also think that aesthetically I preferred the painting before I added the splatters... So, maybe I will try it without them next time. I think Jackson Pollock said the key to his abstract paintings was knowing when to stop.



So, what did I learn from making this mess?

1) Read the paint tube labels.

2) Organise your paints better.

3) Always have a supply of white spirit in your studio.

4) Don't paint whilst drunk (not going to happen).

5) Sometimes, less is more.

I was struggling to think of a title for this painting, maybe because I'm not too happy with how it turned out. So, I asked my social media followers for suggestions... A few people said they could see a yellow "Trojan" horse in the painting and another person (Jinpa, one of my Brexiles) suggested the title 'Horse Play'. This felt like an apporpriate title for the piece.

7 views0 comments

Comments


bottom of page