MY PAINTING TRAGEDIES – The many mistakes I made when I was teaching myself to Paint.

Besides smudging oil paint everywhere and getting it all over my clothes and stuff, I had a lot of other issues with oil painting. I couldn’t really paint much since I spent a month in Bangalore, back at my parents place. And then came leave. Pascal and I spent a while in Bangalore and then in Goa.

You would think I should be happy about marrying a Goan because of the holiday prospects. My friends so often kindly remind me ‘oooh, you’re so lucky; you’re married to a Goan which means every holiday you’re in Goa.’ Well, it’s not all it’s cracked up to be. It is just like dessert, you eat too much and you get sick of it or get zits all over your face. I wouldn’t say I’m sick of Goa, but the novelty has worn off. At least once a year I go there, spend all day everyday on Calangute beach; my in-laws own a business there. I go to Goa now only to visit my in-laws and to see the pure joy on Pascal’s face when he sits on a chair in front of D’Silva’s Shack facing the sea and enjoying his time away from all his work and of course I love listening to the waves.

Back again from leave I was in a new place now in J&K, the winter was unbelievably brutal. I made a heart painting. This one I made for myself. I wanted to hang it in my living room. I kept the painting in my spare bedroom to dry. A week passed and it wasn’t dry yet. I didn’t think that weather would have anything to do with the drying of oil paint. Two days later I checked again and I saw a thin layer of fungus over the surface of the painting. It was the end of winter and it was starting to get warmer, so I treated the painting like anything else that would get fungus. I put it out in the sun. The fungus disappeared after a day. I decided to put it out in the sun in my balcony every day until the painting dried. What I didn’t realize was that our quarter’s outer walls were being painted or whitewashed. Bam! Whitewash all over my beautiful heart.


I was so heartbroken. My first destroyed painting!

Just so you know, Oil Paint dries through the chemical process of curing and not through evaporation like most things do. The paint develops a skin of dry surface initially but the paint itself takes weeks or months to dry completely. I would also suggest painting in layers and not all at once when you are working with oil paint.

We took leave for a couple of days and visited the saffron fields in Kashmir; the only place in India where saffron grows. The saffron flower is beautiful. Fact: You only get three strands of saffron from a single flower.


I finally painted this saffron flower over the whitewashed heart. Unfortunately I do not have the photo of the painting.

My next blog post will be about the worst part of my life and the challenges I’ve had to face.