Water and Oil

By wr jones

We are in limbo in a move to AZ.  Most of belongings and all furniture are gone.  Only us left, sleeping on floor feeling age every time we creak up.   I decided to do some small studies for future larger pieces.   Most of my oil paints were packed and shipped so I would do watercolors.   Christ!! I forgot how unforgiving watercolor is.  You must think and plan for a successful watercolor; neither of which I do well.  I don’t know where I’m going during a painting much less beforehand.  And when I’m done I  don’t know where I’ve been thus preventing me from learning for future work.

I had a new plastic palette which I didn’t prepare.  The water would bead up so tightly I couldn’t get it to mix.  The brush would soak up all the color at once and palette would be stark white.  I remembered having this problem years ago but could not remember why.  Screw it, I went back to oil.   Painted directly over the watercolor.  Paper is not my favorite painting surface but it was all I had not counting the walls of the sold house.

Ok, enough about painting let’s get to my real rant:

I called Shell to give them a change of address.  Then I thought why not do paperless via email,  where a change of address would not matter.   A male service rep told me they did not have my full social security or my birth date.  Note that I did give him the last 4 of social, address, and card number to verify identity at start of call.  He took my new info and said he had to verify it.  15 minutes go by on hold, then phone call drops.   I call back and get a female rep.  Repeat the info and she say she has to verify and leaves me hanging for 10 minutes.  When she came back I ask what the devil took so long.  She said she was talking to her supervisor and they need for me to send a photocopy of my social security card and my driver’s license via land mail.   I responded – Fuck you close the account!  (on the inside) What came out was, “please close the account now, and do you realize I have had that card and used and paid it every month for 40 YEARS.”    I’m astounded at the greed for information that is not relevant for a business agreement.   I’ve never had any company ask for photocopy of social and driver’s license. What the hell is wrong with these people?  I felt like I was on a phishing call.

This entry was posted in Figure, Humor, Landscape, Painting, Rants. Bookmark the permalink.

20 Responses to Water and Oil

  1. Re: watercolor, a teacher once told me you won’t find young watercolorists, it takes a long time to get any good at it. Since he said that I’ve paid attention more and found it’s true. So why is it that oil painters in particular look down at watercolorists as something less? Ah, well, when they gain more experience, they will learn.

    On the information thing, annoying isn’t it! I’ve gone paperless, but I did it all on line. No dropped calls, no waiting. You do have to provide information because there has been so much identity theft, they are trying to circumvent anyone else getting in and making changes to your account to allow unauthorized access to it.

    I think you’ll love AZ! This is the perfect time of year to make the move.

  2. You DID say you moved to Arizona, right??? Maybe they were concerned that you were an illegal …. LOL

    I’ve missed you Bill. Hope the move will be good for you and your family and that you begin to find the time to enjoy doing things (like painting and ranting) once again!!

  3. Wow, Arizona…sounds hot! Hotter than Atlanta! Hope the rest of the move goes easily.

  4. rahina qh says:

    it’s a good composition Bill and a good study… as for watercolours, the last time i tried them, i ended up making holes in the paper and eventually throwing the set of colours somewhere i can’t remember… i think watercolours have that effect on the memory as you described.

    aren’t you thankful to Shell for giving you something to rant about? Arizona sounds hot… i mean temperature hot…. but i guess you and your family like heat… wishing you and your family all the best when you eventually move.

  5. Rhonda says:

    Pretty good painting for a failed watercolor, Bill! Enjoyed your rant (I mean, um…I feel your pain…ah, what the heck, you know we come to read your rants as often as we come to see your artwork and you’ll have plenty to rant about in AZ). Hope your move and the transition is successful without too many rants along the way. Come back painting loud and strong when you get settled. And Happy Thanksgiving.

  6. Dar says:

    You produced a nice range of colors and values here. I’m guessing that is not an easy thing. I don’t know from watercolor. I rely on the cover-up-my-mistakes quality of oil paint. Speaking of which, is the figure in the painting repairing damage caused by one of your late night escapades?
    Have you tried gouache? Or goulash? Both might be nice.

    I wish you and your family all the best. I hope there are happy adventures for you in AZ. I spent a year there a while back. (No, it wasn’t in one of their nice prisons.) As a PA girl, I had to learn: Don’t put the car windows up all the way- they may burst. Always stand in the shade- or you may burst. But, it’s a dry heat.

    Health and happiness to you, Bill!

  7. lesliepaints says:

    I like your oil over watercolor, Bill! I don’t envy you, the packing and the moving. One thing I know for sure is that, for me, anyway, the unpacking was easier than the packing. Safe travels to you!

  8. I define watercoloring as “controling the flood” I see here that the word “controling” has been underscored by my smarty pants computer in red, and I don’t care. That word should only have one “l”. One is enough for god’s sake! You need to take some steel wool and rough up the plastic on a new watercolor palette to minimize the beading effect. I’m bi-polar . . . I watercolor and indeed think ahead. I also like to paint in acrylic because I can change my mind and QUICKLY, I might add. I too would like to see Mango watch his language . . . I’m with you brother! Remember . . . steel wool.

  9. wrjones says:

    Happy Thanksgiving to all – except Rahina, she is Scotch and most likely sucking on a lamb hock in stead of a proper meal of turkey and Special K per the historic dining habits of the first Euro-Americans. For you, happy lamb day, RQH. Also, Rebecca is far enough south she may be having grits.

    Dianne – the reason water-colorists are looked down upon is the stuff dries too quickly to properly get paint on your clothes, furniture, dog, important papers, etc. Without this unconscious peripheral art work are you really a painter?

    Marian – in AZ now. We did go through a roadblock manned by a large group of border patrol. I had my usual furtive look (stimulated by the rose I “bartered” with the neighbor in this painting – I intended to swap Mango’s poop for fertilizer; he left it, conveniently, in her front yard.). I ate the rose as we approached the roadblock. They kept me for a couple of hours then concluded I was too much of a idiot to be a successful rose rustler. If you can’t tell shit from applesauce you are not considered a national security threat. I’m looking forward to near full time ranting. Doesn’t pay well but the hours are good.

    Rebecca – It is hotter here but not nearly as humid. Thus my old crinkly skin will be all cracked instead of smooth and soft. And, BTW, I’m still waiting for my reading material when you work up the nerve. You should make it a New Year’s resolution to take a chance. Of course you may lose but isn’t that what gambling is all about?

    Rahina – Thanks. I have sent Shell a formal thank you note for giving me rant material. I probably should have waited for them to send me written permission to curse them publicly. Once this blog goes viral they will want a cut. Your last painting is looking very strong in spite of your bad diet.

    Rhonda thank you – hope you are having a great Pavo day with your family/friends. Pavo is Spanish for turkey, or maybe it means lamp post, I’ll look it up later.

    Dar – do they call you Detective Dar? That IS my neighbor trying to cover up the rose hole I left. I’m trying to paint in a higher key with brighter colors. It is a stretch for me as I like mid values and muted colors. My wife wanted to see a yellow dress but I was too lazy to repaint.

    Leslie – thank you. Moving at any age is a pain but when you are old and have been in one place for 23 years it is another level of difficulty. We are half way now with just the unpacking part once we get the new home deal completed.

    David – you have my total admiration for being the boss of your computer! When my computer changes “shit” to shoot, shoe, sock, slipper, sink, sod farm, scurrilous, … etc. I cave thinking it has written millions of letters it must know what this piece needs better than me. I sometimes wonder if all this correcting has anything to do with the precipitous drop off in the number of return emails. Maybe not everyone is enamored with correctly spelled stuf.

    “Controlling the flood” is an apt phase for water color painters with balls. For us sissy painters that would be “controlling the slightly damp”. But I did treat my palette so I’m going to “get on” again, as the bull riders say.

  10. Lori says:

    Happy Turkey Day Bill! Lovely painting, it makes me want to do some gardening.

    My sympathies with Shell, I got to fight the cable-vision people now, they wanted all my info the last battle I had with them.

  11. Barbara Pask says:

    Very nice painting Bill, a struggle for you I guess but it came out very nice. I play around with watercolors once in a while and really respect good watercolor artists. I like oils, I correct as I go. Good luck in Arizona, I hope the move is a great thing for you. New landscape to paint, right? Take care

  12. Carol King says:

    Sleeping on the floor. I could probably get down, but not back up!

    I, too, haven’t moved in 23 years. I can’t even imagine what it would be like to pack up my crap and move it. And I don’t even live n a house.

    I like your watercolor/oil painting. The combination of the two gives it an almost pastel-like quality.

    I am looking forward to you moving and settling down so you can get back to the business of painting and ranting.

  13. Arizona will be a great place to get reacquainted with watercolor! The climate will dry those pictures faster than anything. You’ll be doing layers, transparencies over the transparencies. You can do all that great Arizona landscape. It’ll be great!

  14. Erin says:

    Just wanted you to know that you are missed :-(
    I’ll keep checking back for the paintings & rants, you have a great talent for both. Stop by the gym if you are back this way… I’ll sneak you in for a thorough booty-kicking. Don’t want you going soft out there in AZ. <3

  15. rahina qh says:

    i’d just like to say, Bill, that the staple diet of Scotland is fried fish and chips followed by a fried Mars bar (a chocolate which is full of sweet gunge and about 1000 calories before it is fried and 2000 after frying)… actually calorie wise, probably similar to the American diet;) and furthermore your English is crap: Scotch is the drink, not the people… so there;)

  16. I like this, Bill, looks sort of like pastel. I agree that watercolor is difficult – it has such a mind of its own. Glad you went back to oil – it came out really nice. Good luck in your new place – I bet you’ll love it! Looking forward to seeing more good work and interesting posts from you!

  17. wrjones says:

    Lori – thank you. I had happy turkey for 3 or 4 days. Now back to beans and rice, and the odd snickers bar.

    Barbara – thanks. I think you should do another watercolor now – it is good for an artist to suffer!

    Carol – just imagine bitter cold with the heat out, a swarm of mosquitoes biting, runny nose with the flu, and painting in watercolor and you will get a feel for how much moving sucks. Oh that’s right you do paint in watercolor. Never mind, you are suffering enough.

    Aletha – now you have me pumped up and ready to try it again – thanks for the positive outlook. I will hold you responsible should it go south AGAIN.

    Erin – I miss you. I will give you a toot if I’m back and bring my suit for the water aerobics. However, don’t think of me going soft. I’m working out so that I’m now 6′ 4″, 238, with a 29″ waist. This dry climate is fabulous for body building. I would have been heavier but the frustrations of water color have put me off my feed. Keep in mind though, when you see me, that the deep tan I have from all this sun will make me look smaller, quite a bit smaller.

    Rahina – thanks for pointing out the obvious to the most casual observer… namely my English is a little weak. And a slight correction to the American diet – fish, chips, fried Mars bar would not be a complete diet at all, more like a pre-meal snack.

    Connie – thanks, I always liked you! So far no part of moving has been fun be we are more than half way there. Then I will have some serious rant time available.

  18. Ihope you are settled now. wherever you landed. I haven’t been posting or reading lately – it’s been a while, but was glad to see by stats that you’ve been dropping by mine from time to time.
    I know what you mean about them wanting every bit of info – and one is not supposed to give out one’s social security number, so where do they get off asking for it.
    Then, what kind of an apology do they make when all of a sudden the company files get hacked? “Oh, so sorry.” … hugely lame.
    Anyway, enough of that, I like your lovely watercolor/oil on paper. Very nice.
    Happy New Year to you.
    K

  19. My wife got crap like that from Amazon the other day, over a business account that they said had been hacked by someone else. She was trying to interact and try to find out what happened, and they wanted a credit card number before they’d let her in. No credit card was ever used to set up the damn account! Again with the phishing type stuff.

    Anyways, yeah I tried a little watercolor recently – after umpteen years hiatus – so I can relate. I mean come on, it’s water! Should be easy. Right? No. Hell no.
    Pretty good save on this one though.

  20. wrjones says:

    K – nope, not settled yet but inching toward that goal. How is winter so far? God I hate being cold.

    Albert – thanks for stopping by. Keep up with the watercolor, you probably have punishment coming for one reason or another.

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