Wednesday, July 15, 2009

What do you wear when you’re working?

This question might be aimed more at oil and acrylic painters rather than watercolor painters. Do you have specific clothes set aside that you don’t mind getting paint on?

In years past when I tended to get paint on everything, I had specific old clothes set aside just for painting in. These old clothes would get covered with drips, spots, and splashes, which became stiff with dried paint – not so much fun to wear. I’m not as messy or drippy as I used to be. These days I tend to wear regular clothing that’s comfortable, although not anything new or expensive just in case something spills or drips. Sometimes I remember to put an oversized old shirt on top Certainly I don’t look as dapper as Monet or Picasso do in these old photographs.

What do you wear when you’re working? Do you wear old clothes? Do you wear a protective layer like a smock or coveralls?


Beth said...

HI Katherine,
I love these volcano sketches. You have really captured their overwhelming strength and beauty. On the gloves...I purchase mine at Costco. Don't know if that is an option for you, but they are inexpensive and pretty handy to have around. And your post today..I used to wear "paint clothes" but have evolved to wearing a sleeveless short pocketed apron over my clothes. It has a lot of pattern so the paint doesn't show up. It was a wedding shower gift 29 years ago. I keep thinking I will copy the pattern and make more it is perfect.
I can't wait to see what you are working on or finishing up. Take care.

Jean Spitzer said...

Lately, when I'm painting, I'm wearing whatever I was sleeping in--I'm painting mostly first thing in the morning. Later, I will probably change into something comfortable for the day, but I no longer seem to need a painting shirt. (I have a few, with rather unlovely splotches and smears; same thing for pants.) Like you, I've gone from getting the paint on my clothes to getting in on the support, mostly. Also, like you, I try not to wear my nicest things for painting, just in case.

Melissa said...

I wear older comfortable clothes a well, I don't care if they get paint on them. I wear an apron too, that helps.
I am generally a pretty neat painter, But I have ruined a top or two by just walking into the studio and brushing up against something -- not painting.
I buy my gloves at a pharmacy (CVS) am I missing out on Amazon?

Vickie said...

I do have clothing that is for painting and gardening. It isn't that I am that messy as a painter, i just use my hands alot, and rub them off on my clothes. I have lately started wearing an apron, but it's been so hot lately! I oftentimes keep the door to my studio (basement) open and use my fence to hang my work on. You know - I have got to start wearing the gloves though!

Anonymous said...

Interesting question, Katherine! One of the advantages of working in pastel is that my clothes seem to come through the process unscathed. Not so sure about my lungs, though I do not blow pastel dust around. I find that the advantage of pastel is that I can enter the studio at anytime during the day and work for 20 minutes to a couple of hours. So what I am wearing at the moment can be just about anything.

When I teach, I tend to wear an apron, just because I am helping students at their easels and anything goes when the setup is not your own.

Palmer said...

I tend to wear my "at home" clothes, but I'm wearing those anyway!!

Katherine Kean said...

Beth, I think the pocket on the apron would come in handy. I might want to try something like that. And - glad you liked the volcano sketches, thank you.

Jean, That's wonderful. I love painting first thing in the morning. If I wasn't in the habit of walking in the morning first I might paint in my pajamas.

Melissa, Getting gloves from Amazon works for me because I use the Prime service. Plus there's no sales tax - at least for now.

Vickie, I think it's great that your fence serves at times as a gallery wall!

Marianne, Being able to pick up and work at any time is a great advantage to have! It probably helps to have the apron when you teach to help distinguish you from your students - like a doctor's lab coat.

Palmer, That works! I'm glad that you're painting again too.

Anne M Bray said...

Oh, I LOVE this topic -- especially since I'm packing up for a stint @ art camp up in Idyllwild!
I have a special painting wardrobe... I'm a real slob and an apron is not enough protection. I HATE getting paint on my good clothes -- I abandoned the paint-splattered artist look in the 70s. When I was in school for Fashion, we had one day of live model drawing (chalk pastel) so I wore my painting outfits -- I still have one of the Tshirts and get fond memories when I wear it.
I'll post some pix of me in my art gear -- oh wait -- I've got some from my last Idyllwild adventure:

Gabrielle said...

What a great question!

I used to be kind of a catch-as-catch-can painter, so when I was struck with inspiration I just started painting. I ruined many a work outfit that way and have since smartened up and set aside old, stained or torn clothes to change into when the painting mood strikes me now.

Katherine Kean said...

Anne, Thanks for the link - I loved looking at the photos. Have a great time at Idyllwilde!

Gabrielle, That sounds like a good plan. Just as I was feeling proud of myself for not getting paint on my clothes I dripped some on my trousers. Luckily most of it came out in the wash - this time.

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