Painting On My Own Time

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Old Glory Marines about 60% completed (right) with some Perry AWI figures remounting for Rebels and Patriots

Tuesday the June 24th was the end, period, it’s over.  I am an official free agent.  My time is my own.  Life is very good.

I always envisioned retirement as a mix of days when I would get together with Dave Demick, we’d hang out at his place playing White Bear, Red Moon (Chaosium Game, ca 1976), go out for awesomely bad pub grub, and the rest of the time I’d paint little men.

I’m not saying this isn’t what’s going to happen, it’s way too early to tell.  In fact a certain amount of it is already happening.  Dave, Tim Barela and I played some board games, ate terrible (meaning it really tastes good) pub food at Terry’s Office Tavern in the Proctor District, and had a generally good time.

I’m sure there are many more such occasions in my future, with far fewer obstacles to navigate around, and I’m truly looking forward to them.  I’m hoping to become involved with Tuesday night gaming with the Olympia guys, Truant games with the guys in Steilacoom, and of course my regular group of friends.

I’m truly not sure what my future offers in terms of long-term commitments.  However, I’m really sure that in the short term it’s gaming, but three other areas will take my time.  One of those is pretty household related, and that is minimizing our (Lorri and my) collections of needless crap.  Another area is of personal interest and that is fully organizing and cataloging my record collection.  That includes a full cleaning of all 1,500ish LP’s.  Last, and probably most important from a passion standpoint is painting.

I laid out some of my painting plans in my last post. But I also think it’s worthwhile to set out short term painting objectives too.  I am a routine-driven person.  Ask my wife.  I’m also an early-to-bed-early to rise guy.  I plan to take care of my missus in the morning, as I fondly wave good-bye to her as she departs for the hell that is her commute, and then I’ll get some painting done, an hour or so, until eight to nine o-clock, when I’ll troop out to work in the backyard, at least until the weather turns and we enter the “great darkness” of the Northwest winter.

I’ve always tried to set goals for myself.  I usually do something new every year, though I think those days may be over. In years past my goal is to paint an average of a single figure per day.  (Just for the sake of ease of understanding, a figure is a 28mm figure, a plane, a ship, a whatever model of whatever.) That’s seven figures per week, or 365 figures per year. I’m going to change that to 12 figures per week.

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This is the current state of my painting table. Though I have a great space about 48″ X 30″, it is utterly cluttered with paint, brushes, and stuff, leaving me about 6 square inches to work. Does everybody else have this problem?

And to be truthful, I know I can do more than that, and still have lots of time leftover for other things–like remounting all those figures for Rebels and Patriots, or building terrain for the Philippines. Or writing the rules for the Buffalo Hunt. It’s all doable.

Week of July 8th goals–Finish 12 Old Glory U.S. Marines for the Philippines.  Paint eight Dixon buffalo.  Remount one unit of Continentals for R and P and one six figure unit of riflemen. Hope to have five total units for our game on July 20th.  Longer term goal is to get all the buffalo finished for August.  Want to run Buffalo Hunt at Gene Anderson’s game gig on the 24th, but it will need a play test before that.

What am I listening to–Hope to include this in more frequent posts.  I am not a huge country music fan, but as I get older, I’m more willing to listen to a broader range of stuff.  An artist I’ve come to appreciate more is Johnny Cash.  I really like the honesty of his songs, and nowhere is this clear than in the recordings he did with producer Rick Rubin at the end of his life. Entitled American Recordings, vols I-VI, they typically feature Cash and a guitar and very spare production.  Artists sit in with him, including Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers.  Cash mostly performs covers–some really well known, like “Solitary Man”  by Neil Diamond and “Bird on A Wire” by Leonard Cohen.  But sometimes he throws in a surprise, such as Soundgarden’s “Rusty Cage.”  Always interesting, and never a disappointment.  Worth a listen.

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2 comments on “Painting On My Own Time

  1. Jonathan Freitag says:

    Congratulations on retirement, Kevin! I am envious and look forward to a day I may follow in your footsteps of gainful unemployment.

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