The Tinker

This painting is meant to be a companion, thematically, to The Mender.

As I mentioned in those Painter’s Notes, I started this year focusing on frugality
and the lost art of repairing broken things.

I trekked up to the old studio for inspiration…which we now lovingly refer to as “The Pod”
since it is about the size of those mobile storage units and since it now houses “The Props”
…and a battalion of stink bugs but that’s another painting.

I hauled down the old Zenith radio and a few rusty tools
and had great fun playing with the still life set up.
Adding and taking away, repositioning and relighting,
and repositioning again after the happily wagging Bernese Mt. Dog tail
of my apprentice Finnegan wandered through for a dose of distraction.

The Tinkers that I have known are among my favorite humans.
They are defined in all aspects of their lives by curiosity
which usually leads to great leaps in the civilization of mankind
and often leads to…well… a mess.
Or what looks to the rest of the world as a mess but to the Tinker…
it’s a puzzle and puzzles are fun
which makes Tinkers happy people.

There are many things in this composition that were among my father’s possessions.
The most interesting of which is that old chalkboard. His grandfather was a mechanic for the
Wright Brothers at their airfield in Ohio and it is possible that this board which was his,
with it’s faint but finely detailed entries of engine lubes and services
written on one side, was used in that shop.
I decided at first to leave it blank in the painting.  But along the way I googled the work Tinker.
I absolutely loved the first definition I saw…
“no useful effect”