Moonlighting by Judy Cools: Painting

August 10, 2012

A couple of months ago, after thinking about it for a year, I painted my office at work. I’ve been there a dozen years and for all that time have been looking at institutional gray-beige walls. This was a sanctioned effort, although I’ll admit that I chose the color without supervision.

The Friday afternoon came, and I toted all the supplies in from my car. The first thing someone did was to read the label on my gallon of paint: “Veiled Violet.” Really?!? Well, I had given this a lot of thought, figuring I’d be looking at these walls for another 12 years before they saw fresh paint again. The color was perfect, and I’m just not responsible for what the company calls it.

I felt I had to stick within a certain range of color so my office didn’t clash with the things around it. There is carpeting and cube walls, murals and other offices that were painted first. A glass wall separates my office from my boss’ office, so whatever I picked would have to coordinate with whatever he picked. Veiled Violet was the answer.

It’s a serene color, some depth in a purple or rose range, but with a distinctly professional and elegant gray cast. It’s soft, but it isn’t “girly.” Well….. it isn’t girly after it’s fully dry.

As I began to paint, I began to worry. The more I painted, the more I worried. It was looking really pink. Anyone who paints knows that latex paint when wet is not at all the color it will be when it’s dry. Based on that truth, I continued in silence. My intention was to paint three of my four walls, which I had done by 8:00 p.m. I didn’t want to leave a mess or have the office smell of paint, so I went back on Saturday to clean up. Overnight, the pink blush faded and the gray took over, as the room dried thoroughly. By Monday, it was hard for me to even appreciate all my work since the change was so subtle.

Everyone who comes in immediately comments on what a soothing color it is. And one of my coworkers was in and out of my office for a month before slowing down to say, “You painted.” Subtle. Not the scary color out of the bucket, but the peaceful color on the paint chip. And I am hooked. Next time I’ll tell you what I’ve started doing to the house.


© 2012, J. Cools

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