- what kind of writer am I, anyway?
- have I squandered all or just most of my opportunities?
- will I ever make anything worthwhile?
etcetera, questions I think we can agree are not particularly productive when asked in an after-the-retreat blue period.
So I did the sensible thing: I carried out a crafts-imperative. And no, I am not speaking of my writing craft, I am speaking of going to Michael's to buy gesso, acrylic paints, and a fixative so that I could turn a pair of uninspiring loafers into gold loafers. As in: I painted my shoes.
I bought the shoes below online. They are perfect in every way except the color which I somehow thought would be creamier, more delicious, more go-with-everything. Instead they were simultaneously mobster-in-Miami and grungy:
Practically, this means that I almost never wore these shoes. Yet I hesitated to give them away. They were--and this is meaningful in my shoe wardrobe--comfortable. Would the color grow on me? Would I fall in love with them over time? Could I somehow change their color? Could I paint them?
I looked it up on the internet, after having inquired of my daughter (who had spray painted some pumpkins in a brilliant and very shiny fashion at Halloween) as to whether she advised spray paint for shoes. She said I should look it up on the internet, which I did (see above). I found these instructions, which is what sent me up to Michael's.
Before I started, though, the historian called me out to see this in the front garden:
"I think it might be safer in the other flower bed," he said.
"I don't know if I like being married to a snake handler," I said, as he picked the snake up and put it in the ivy, where it flipped its tail in an insouciant manner as it disappeared.
Back to the shoes:
These (above) are gessoed. Gesso prepares the surface so it will take the paint.
I was going for a rose gold thing, so I bought bronze paint (iridescent) and some pink paint. No dice. This led to a dull bronze color. Lovely, but not quite gleam-y enough. So I added another coat of bronze:
I let it dry. Then I sprayed it with a fixative:
I know. I had mobster-in-Miami, now I have whatever this is. Which I am, honestly, in love with. Gold shoes! The best!
After the retreat, I think wearing gold shoes will put me in a better position for considering my artistic future.