I know, it’s bit of a cliche. But painting really can be quite meditative, I think. Today I painted an old Victorian bamboo chest.  (Sacrilege? Is it really? Sorry, I think painting it white looks much nicer than natural).

While painting I sorted out a lot of stuff. I planned the rearranging of furniture in a few rooms, visualised a veggie garden, organised my week, got an idea for the lamb chops for supper, and remembered where I’d put a pile of super-NB documents. I also zoned out for a short spell and arrived back on earth feeling like I’d had a whole weekend already.

When you paint, you can’t multi-task. You can only stand (or if possible, sit) in one place, stay in the moment, and enjoy the feel of the brush dragging that magical change-making stuff onto whatever thing you’re painting. If you try to rush it or decide halfway through that you hate it, I promise you this. That thing that you’re painting will look ugly. Painting and resentment aren’t good together.

And painting gives you time to think. Today I thought about Kelvin, our house-painter who passed away last year. Kelvin was a proper painter. He painted so beautifully, you could see and feel the peace in his work. I loved watching him paint. I also thought of Mogamet, who made magic tricks happen with plaster type finishes. Another old pro, gone too soon.

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