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.

Article written by Sarah Wyland

Sarah Wyland
Sarah never gets in trouble for being on Facebook and Instagram at work, because its her job. As social media manager, she gets to tell the stories of travelers, teachers, and interesting places. Other titles she enjoys include dog mom to Knox, barre instructor, Crossfit athlete, avid reader, and world traveler.
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