Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The Story of Paint

I don't know about the rest of the illustrators in the world, but I get very attached to my paint. I've used the same brand for the last 13 years and I love it. I know how it will mix and blend and dry.

So, I got very upset when my local art store stopped carrying it. Worse yet, I couldn't order it, couldn't find it online...nothing! Had I imagined Turner Design Gouache into existence? Finally, after hours of searching I found a phone number and address of the manufacturing company, located in NYC.

Which began a series of somewhat sketchy phone calls. Yes, they could sell me the paint, a woman with a strong accent Asian accent said to me. I could send her an e-mail, but she wouldn't be able to reply because she didn't have Internet access (?). It would be best if I came to pick the paint up in person. I could leave the payment with the guy in front and he'd give me the package. Oh, and could I pay in cash?

What was this, drugs? I was going to NYC anyway, so even though I thought it was odd, I said yes to all of her requests. Even with fears of some sort of random police paint bust.

The truth was, I didn't care. I wanted my paint. I needed it. Okay, maybe this paint IS some kind of drug...

But I got it. The actual exchange turned out to be fairly anti-climatic, the woman was actually a quite friendly Thai artist living in a nice condo building. The only unexpected thing was that my paint weighed about 20 pounds. I had been so worried about the paint's future availability that perhaps I overbought a bit. Oh well, at least I know it will be a while before I have to go through this again!


Tricia said...

Hi Grace,
I did a little searching and found a few sites online that carry it. You may not need paint for a while, but when you do, you won't need to lug 20 lbs of paint around NYC! (Although, it sounds like it was quite an adventure!)

ASW Express

Jerry's Artarama

The search terms I used in Google were:
"Turner Design Gouache" +"art supply"

Anonymous said...

Hi Grace,

I do a similar thing... whenever I learn about a particular paint, brush, paper, or pen nib that one of my favorite illustrators uses, I have to run out and buy it THAT DAY, with the childish hope that I can magically be just as good as they are if I only had their tools!

As an example, a few years ago, I found out that Emma Chichester Clark only uses Dr. Ph. Martin's Concentrated Watercolors, so of course I now own an entire set for myself. I used them on Eat Your Peas, Ivy Louise! and Space Boy.

I think it goes back to when I was a kid, and thought that if I only had the certain sneakers of my favorite baseball player, I could run as fast as he could.