Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Our First 'paid' gig

Tonight Lucy and I did our first paid gig for the opening of some pop up spaces in The Rocks. We set up our pitch next to the kitchen and after Lucy had prepared our instruments I began to work the room. It was strange working indoors without natural acoustics, without a sky to stare at between announcing the minutes, hooking the crowd and keeping Lucy in line. And it was strange to be paid a fee.

The lady who ran the kitchen gave us food and commiserated with us. She wants us to pitch at her cafe and gave us some useful advice on how to swindle customers.

My bottom is on the mend so I'll suggest Lu and I get on the road soon...Perhaps to Broken Hill or Quebec...

A selection from May 25, 2011

An observant reader will noticed that nearly two years passed between our first 'paid' gig and the next portrait-painting session.  That reader might further discern the fact we did five sessions in a couple of weeks.  I think we overdid it.  Painting portraits in words is first and foremost a business venture, but it also has a kind of spiritual quality, where Stella has to channel all the spruikers who ever came before her, and I have to tap into the great reservoir of how to describe faces.  We can certainly flog our wares, but we can't flog them too often, or our fonts will dry up.

Our 'paid' gig also had some fatal flaws - people were all dressed up in their art-opening clothes, and art-opening manners, and art-opening make-up, and when they sat down in front of me, wreathed in their social smiles, I wanted to snap at them: "Can you just be real for five minutes!"  It wasn't a situation conducive to still and natural faces, and a pall of resentment slowly crept over me.


I've put Amanda's up here as it is the most uninspired and scraping-the-bottom-of-the-imagination portrait I've done.  No fault of Amanda's.  I was having portrait-painter's burn-out.




John and Bill