Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Why the high cost of paints doesn't matter

This morning, I did my quick sneaky perusal of Facebook to see how much greater my family's and friends' lives are than mine, and I came across a post that made me think a lot about why I paint.  It was a photo of a few tubes of paint, and the poster was complaining about their price, which paint prices can be quite steep.  I almost never comment on Facebook, but this time I had to say a little something.  I said something along the lines of "Think of all the wonderful paintings you can do with these tubes of paint; then they don't seem so expensive."  That made me think about why I paint at all.  There are many other "careers" I could still have, but I'm somehow driven to paint.  And the cost of the materials is relatively irrelevant.

Well, I still don't know why I paint exactly, but I can give a bit of insight into it.  I paint because I am internally driven to do so.  Maybe there's a kind of personality that causes some people to push themselves to excel at something, not to compete with others but for the sheer satisfaction of knowing they're doing their best.

I have two main activities that I pursue in this way:  One, of course, is painting.  Painting is as necessary to me as eating or breathing.  I don't think I'm a very good painter -- better than many and worse than many, many more -- but I truly don't compare myself to others.  But to myself I'm not good enough yet.  Maybe that's what drives me to keep trying and trying, that I don't think I'm YET a very good painter.  I want to be the best painter that I personally can be, and I think I can be better.

I also have this overwhelming drive to master another language, in my case, French.  Unfortunately, I don't know anybody well who even speaks French, so this pursuit is for the most part unknown to those outside my family -- whom I drive mad with my constantly speaking to them in French.  (I am teaching my little granddaughter to speak French, though!)  But I think the same drive I have to paint is what motivates me to continue to improve my ability to speak French -- even if it's for the most part something I do "in a vacuum."

So, yes, the cost of the paints and all the other materials necessary to create paintings is high, but the personal rewards far outweigh the costs.  Plus, on a more practical note:  A tube of paint can go a long, long way in creating many paintings.

1 comment:

Jax1 said...

Hi!I just bought six gorgeous pots of paint and some mixing palettes and pots and a creative bag to carry stuff in outdoors for my daughter. Then I realized I really want them for me!!Totally agree that it is worth the cost as creativity is magical and these paints just inspired me as they were just gorgeous in their pots! Now I just need to decide what to paint!!