Exterior of Addison on Amelia

Painting as Therapy

February 15th, 2011 by theAddison

When you own a wooden house in Florida, especially one that is 130 years old, there is always something to paint.  In the winter when it is “cold” outside I paint the interior.  When it warms up outside I paint the exterior.  My first project this season is the courtyard deck railings.   

Painting is all in the preparation.  For me, the hardest part of painting a room is removing that first light switch cover.  After that comes the detail work.  Remove all hardware (door knobs, towel bars, light fixtures…), mask door hinges, strip window treatments, pile all of the furniture up in the middle of the room and cover everything with drop cloths.  It takes a couple of days to prep a room and trim out all of the edges.  I don’t tape edges anymore, I just use a keen eye and a steady hand.  After a few days of prep work comes the gravy work.  Bring out the roller and in a matter of minutes the painting is finished.

I find painting to be relaxing work, almost therapeutic.  There is a start and an end with a series of well defined steps in between.  Part of cutting in edges without taping is the breathing.  Concentrate on your breathing and your hand steadies and the corners look nice.

It is a good thing that I like painting because when Shannon and I lived in Virginia we painted our dining room 11 times in one year.  The neighbors would joke that the room was becoming smaller.

Although I enjoy painting as a pleasant task there are those that paint for pleasure.  Our neighborhood was recently over-run by a painter’s workshop.  Students were from all over the eastern states with Alabama and Wisconsin being well represented.  Our neighborhood has several Victorian homes that made good subjects for the workshop painters. 

The painter shown here is Renee, all the way from Montgomery, Alabama.  She is doing an oil painting of our 7th Street fountain. 

There are enough of these painters in the neighborhood and some of them are already painting my house.  I wonder if I could pull a Tom Sawyer on them and get them to paint these deck railings?      

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