the ‘art’ of a disaster

Blog 2 …. thought I’d have the book written at this stage!

For me the second hardest thing in painting is deciding what I want to paint and what I want to paint it on – the hardest thing is ‘starting’! I’m not entirely sure if that’s all down to indecision, procrastination or simply due to the time it takes for a few of my brain cells to crank up and approve an idea presented by the team in the ‘concepts’ department? Another factor relative to this blog is a DIY ‘rush’ I get ‘sticking things together’, I’ve always been like that even as a child – I suspect ‘Blue Peter’ was to blame! The final factor is my tendency to avoid the ‘recommended’ route….yup canvas is fine but what if I stuck that to this and then I could see if….you get my drift! I spend more time working out the construction logistics  than I would doing an entire painting. For example; on one memorable occasion I wanted to build a 3D head merging into a background, so I decided to make a wooden base (successful), a wire frame (successful) wrap it in paper mache (if only I’d let it dry…!) and fill it with an expandable insulation foam that was on a shelf in my garage for years (total disaster). I pointed the nozzle at the allocated gap and because I only had the canister and not the device to deploy it – I improvised (not clever) by sticking a thin screwdriver up the nozzle……holy shit!!! The foam came out like a raging genie out of its lamp! Then, as God had intended for it, it expanded as it went into the hole and as quickly blew apart my paper mache when it ran out of space…it then totally engulfed my 3D model. As this happened in a couple of seconds my natural reaction was to pull it away however the screwdriver  had obviously delivered a fatal incision because the thing ‘exploded’ everywhere and immediately started to expand and set. In an effort to save my ‘art’ i started to smooth the goo with my bare hands however it kept bloating out through the wire mesh – I gave up when it resembled the Fantastic Four’s ‘Thing’. The other more serious problem was that my hands were becoming ‘Thing’ like, both hands were coated in an inch of gluey gloop plus i had it on my face and in my hair – four hours later having soaked, scrubbed and scoured I was left with one layer of skin and no trace of fingerprints – lesson learned?…..probably not! I must dig the remains out of the garage and take a shot of it and show it to you – oh yeah…I hoard crap too!


About Neil Condron

Nationality: Irish Occupation: Artist & Design consultant Studio: Enniskerry, Co Wicklow As a Designer: I’m an experienced design professional with demonstrated managerial success in evaluating, designing, developing and delivering corporate and product branding projects. I have Thirty-five years experience in the advertising and graphic design industries as a design practitioner and twenty three of those years as owner/manager of one of Ireland’s leading brand design companies Xmi design (formerly Marketing Image) employing, directing and training over 150 staff within that period. Proven creative skills in brand intuition, devising creative strategy, concept generation, design technologies, photographic direction and digital/print management. Proven management skills as managing director of xmi, in leadership, financial management, operations management, new business development, key client management, projects management, process and operational procedures development, needs analysis and training evaluation. Proven interpersonal skills as mentor, minder, motivator and confessor and always letting the client take the credit for a good idea. Proven track record having worked with the best in Irish business over three decades alongside some of our best creative talent - with industry accolades to prove it. As an Artist: My first recollection of my interest in painting was at the age of 10 when I won a prize for designing and painting a Christmas card in school. I loved both the art and the accolade - I was hooked. Regretfully I never made it to art college, instead I deployed my creativity in the commercial design world for over thirty years. Sporadically, as time would allow, I continued to paint and explore various mediums and styles. The great ‘epiphany’ occurred in 2008 when the arse fell out of my commercial world and the realisation that ‘tempus fugit’ is a reality. The need to paint became all-consuming – so I decided, much to the bewilderment of my worried family and the despair of my bank manager, to follow the dream. My philosophy - Life’s an adventure, what happens next is anyones guess, so enjoy the moment – without being a total idiot! View all posts by Neil Condron

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