I can’t paint!

Sometimes I have the urge to stand in front of a blank wall and start throwing paint at it.
You know, just go crazy and smear, roll, and spatter paint on that blank wall till it’s a massive amazing masterpiece of personal expression, whereby I would fall on the floor, spent and artistically unburdened of all demons.
We’re renting, so that wouldn’t be good.

There have been times I have been so driven by this urge that I’ve purchased a canvas, in order to relieve my notion of this particular fantasy.
The most exciting part is that blank canvas. The “promise” of what it could bring.
Unfortunately it all turns into a giant mess and becomes this disgusting smear of … puce.
Always…when you mix all colours around in frustration, it ends up a piece of puce.

I can’t paint. I just can’t.
As soon as a paintbrush is in my hand I transform into a three year old.
I have a friend who once wrote a song called “I can’t paint.”Interesting song.
He sings, then begins to scream “I can’t PAINT!” for the entire song. That’s practically the whole lyric, if not the entire lyric.
My heart goes out to him. I know the feeling well.

My father can paint. It’s not fair, I’m really annoyed at him for failing to pass that bit of the gene pool down to me.
What does he give me instead? Premature greying hair and restless legs.
Thanks dad!

I consider myself a very CREATIVE person. In fact I have to create – something, every day. If I don’t I become irritable and depressed.
Being a parent has only increased this creative flair. How do you think I managed to whip up costumes all those times the children came to me at 8 pm and said “Oh mum, by the way…I need to look like a book character TOMORROW!”
Children force you to become creative and to THINK creatively.
I realized this one day when I tied the hairbrush to the bathroom cabinet with a piece of string so it wouldn’t go missing.
Children are vastly more creative than adults though. They simply stole the brush part out of the hairbrush and left the empty handle part dangling on the string.
I once found my husband, who is not creative at ALL, on his hands and knees on the floor cutting up a multi-paged fax with a pair of garden shears – because the scissors were missing.
Desperation also forces creativity.

I dislike saying that I make “crafts” because that sounds like what little children do. Make binoculars out of toilet rolls and things, you know? Or like old ladies who crochet doilies or lap blankets… That’s craft.

Obviously, I’m not “artistic” either, not if I can’t paint.
So what am I then?
I like the term “creative”. It’s kind of all-encompassing don’t you think?
“She creates”…rather than “she makes crafts.”
Sounds more sophisticated somehow.
I mean, you don’t create a work of craft, do you?
It’s bloody biased.
Why do artists get to create works of ART?
Snobby bloody lot they are.

You can pick them a mile away, noses in their air, hair up in a superb looking messy bun, clothes all artfully mismatched in that way of theirs that says “ even the clothes in my wardrobe fell artfully on my body this morning. I didn’t even have to TRY.”
They make me sick, especially the way artist women can wrap a soft scarf so beautifully and ARTFULLY around their necks.
I’d like to strangle them with it.
Sheesh! I didn’t think I harboured such animosity towards….”artists”.
Bit of deep seated hidden issues going on here?

My sixteen year old daughter is like me, very creative, but she can’t paint either.
We both have a problem wrapping scarves around our necks – artfully.
My sister is an expert artistic scarf wrapper. Makes me sick. SHE has inherited the arty gene from my father. I’m jealous.

My daughter, who is having a hard time at the moment in art, was telling me the other day about this girl at school who is the teachers favourite because her and the teacher are both into abstract paintings.
She was studying the teacher’s pet the other day (when they had a full day of art) and described the agonizing experience to me.

She watched as this girl sat in front of the blank canvas for half an hour, just staring at it.
She would gaze at the coloured blobs of paint for another half an hour….then go back to staring at the blank canvas.
Eventually, after much deep angst ridden thought, she dipped the paintbrush in, dabbed a bit on the canvas, and then sat back and very thoughtfully examined that for another hour.
My daughter said she found this mind numbing “process” strangely fascinating, but terribly frustrating, but was compelled to keep watching, in-between getting her own work done.

The girl then mixed some water and thinned out the paint and then tentatively dabbed a bit on and watched with exquisite scrutiny as the colour began to dribble down the canvas.
Then she sat back again, folded her arms and stared for another half an hour at the canvas.
It was about at this point that my daughter said she felt like setting the girls canvas on fire!

It seemed to me that it was all about posturing and playing the part of being the introspective “artiste” pouring her heart and soul out into those few dribs and dabs.
I wasn’t even there, but *I* feel like slapping her. (woah…there’s that deep seated issue thing again?)

I don’t know. I don’t get it?
Neither does my daughter, but we somehow feel inferior, because we can’t PAINT!
I mean….I know, art is all about what “speaks to you” but seriously, some of the rubbish out there just says “bullshit” to me. Slap paint on your bum and press it on canvas?….Hey that might be kinky but it’s about as ‘arty” as the way a cow pat falls from a cows arse onto the grass.
If it looks to me like the average two year old could have painted it then I’m sorry, it just doesn’t impress me.

I was thinking about all this while I was cooking dinner actually.
I came to the conclusion that this is why I am not a good cook – because to cook you are supposed to have “method”, put your heart and soul into it…. and follow recipes, and I’m just not good at that.
Probably why I’m not a good gardener either, because there too you are supposed to follow rules – like “you mustn’t forget to water the plants!”

I bet artists are fantastic cooks. (Probably have wonderful gardens too.)
I can guarantee their dinners fall onto the plate as artfully as the scarves around their necks, unlike my cooking, which looks like someone puked on the plate.
“Eat it darling….even vomit can taste delicious!”

There used to be a very eccentric “artist” we would see at some of the Art and Craft markets we did up in the Blue mountains.
See, there again, there’s this segregation!
Wonderfully talented artists…lowly crafters.
You can sense it when they walk into the room past your crowded with everything little craft stall.
They walk in with three paintings, spend an hour setting them up, and sit there with their perfectly poufed hair and artistically wrapped scarf, nose in the air, and look all hoity toity.

The very first time I saw this eccentric artist, I thought “Cat in a hat!” – I do this all the time, in my mind.
I see people and immediately give them a character. I can’t help it. Just as well we don’t all verbalize every thought we have hey – I’d be in serious trouble.
But seriously this guy IS the human version of the cat in the hat! His face looks JUST like the cats and he wears this weird looking hat and a long black coat….It’s almost as if he is TRYING to look like the cat in the hat character. He paints, of course, and sticks his nose in the air.
Then there was this woman who made the most amazing cloth dolls with intricately hand painted faces and I swear she looked like a little old lady doll herself! Weird!

I think artists just LOOK strange, don’t you…in an artful way, OF COURSE.
I suppose I just look strange in a daggy way.
Because I can’t PAINT!

Damn it…I need to find that song of my friends.
I need to feel like I “belong”, with all the other un artistic, paintbrush disabled people out there.

Maybe I’ll just hang a blank canvas on the wall in my house and when people ask what it is I’ll stick my nose in the air and say..
“Ahh, this piece is titled -The intergalactic space between hope and promise in a futuristic world devoid of puce. It speaks to me.”

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About Tracy Lundgren

I am a people watcher,life observer, nature lover, spiritual seeker loving this crazy wild ride that life is taking me on. I am still a blank piece of paper waiting to be filled and that is good.
This entry was posted in Art, Children, Craft, Creativity, Humour, I can't paint, I don't fit in, Life, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to I can’t paint!

  1. Dan says:

    “I can’t paint”.

    Yes we know you like to exagerate, but who are you trying to kid?
    What a bunch of bollocks.

    What? with a paintbrush? Leave that to your husband.
    And maybe he deserves to be the cook too.

    But your use of colour, (did I spell that correctly?) your understanding of shading,
    the way you can reflect about life in a song’s lyric, the way you embellish a phrase,
    the grace of you voice, (at least when your singing and not perhaps when you’re asking your husband to throw out the garbage) the images that you convey from your melodies,
    the design in your harmonies, not to mention the way that you use your eyes to capture scenes in your videos, all help to paint a lovely musically vivid picture about life.

    You can’t paint. Pfffftttt !!!
    B#!! Sh!+

    Oh, and thanks Dad. 🙂
    😉

  2. desertrose7 says:

    Thank you Dan. I’m grateful I can do something creative, truly I am.
    But damn it, I WOULD like to be able to paint! 😉

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