A Day in the Life of a Contemporary Artist
Pedro Vilá is a painter from Murcia in the Southeast of Spain. He makes a living by selling the art and jewelry he makes at his craft stall at the beach.
Morning: I usually work on my paintings in the morning. The light is better and I don’t get so easily distracted. After a good breakfast I open my paint box and mix all the paints to make sure no lumps have developed overnight. I make my own colours using a white acrylic base and dyes so some days I have to make more of a colour before I can start painting. I paint on canvas and use an easel set up in my living room. I like to leave the TV on in the background for company. I usually paint for 3-4 hours and then stop for lunch. Some days I feel like I’ve been cooped up in the house for too long so I don’t paint at all and instead go exploring on my motorbike.
Afternoon: The afternoon starts between 4 pm and 5 pm after lunch and a siesta or some more painting. Then I like to go to the beach and swim and meet friends for a drink and a free tapa in the bar.
Evening: When I get home from the beach I shower and get ready to go out again and set up my stall by the beach. How long setting up takes depends on if I am only showing my paintings or if I also bring the jewelry I make. The paintings line up against the wall and on easels but displaying bracelets, necklaces and earrings on a table takes time. I have candles or gas lamps ready for when it gets dark. Because dinner time in Spain in the summer is around 10 pm I keep my stall open from about 7 pm till midnight or 1 am. There are always people walking around before or after dinner and during that time I work on the jewelry. Packing up takes about 20 minutes and afterwards I have a drink with friends in the bar or sometimes go out dancing. I like my job because although I don’t earn a lot of money I am free to organize my own time.