Monday, December 21, 2009

Making Pills: Part III

Though they were not 100% dry, the pills were > 97.5% dry. I started at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday and I didn’t finish until after 1:00 a.m. on Sunday. My mission: repaint the second ½ of the pills.

I have been rattling my brain over what to do next with these pills. I was originally going to do a quick touch-up with white paint and then gloss the heck out of the pills with that glossy protective waste of money spray paint. However, I was too afraid to execute this idea after I discovered my bad chemical reaction from the capsules –you can refer back to the previous blog for that adventure.

After much thought, I realized that the only thing I could do was repaint the halves with white. I thought about covering the colored halves with tape and then just spray painting them again, but I realized that I needed to do a lot of touch-ups on every single pill that could only be done by hand. Because the enamel paint I had at hand was not glossy, I had to spray the glossy white spray paint into a plastic cup, and then use that to hand-paint the pills.

The Steps:

I first had to remove the blue tape that covered the white half.

I then had to tape the colored half (to save money, time, and tape, I reused the same piece of tape).

After spraying some glossy white spray paint into a plastic cup, I proceeded to paint the half white.

Finally, the pill could be placed with the rest of the pills and I could move forward and start the next pill.

I finished the blue halves.

Then I finished the green halves.

After were the red halves.

And then those grey halves.

This was all I did, but it really took a long time to do. I wanted to give up at some points because I was feeling exhausted, but I kept pushing myself because I wanted them to all dry at the same time. I also knew I wasn’t going to have the opportunity to paint them later.

The Problems and then the Solutions:

As I was doing this, I realized a few issues. I noticed that I couldn’t keep the tape on the colored halves, because the tape could remove some of the paint if I left it on too long (despite trying to remove some of the stickiness from the tape, I noticed that some tape strips had paint on them). I then had to go back and remove the tape from the pills.

I also began to notice that there was paint on the pins that was left from painting the colored halves. I had been placing the freshly painted white halves on those dirty pins, which was causing dots of colored paint on the white portion of the pills. As a result, I had to go back and reverse the direction of the pills.

What about the Capsules?:

After looking at the capsules again, I realized that I liked the texture. You may call this “defeater’s attitude” by just accepting and going along with the inevitable, but I began thinking that having those cracks gave the capsules some individuality. In general, some capsules have little dots on them or are a little on the powdery-side. The pills I made were already shiny so I thought the texture differentiated the capsules a little. For now, I kind of like it and I will keep them this way. If I change my mind later, I will do something about it.


Yes, there were side-effects to this project. I think because I had spent the other days painting with the enamel and the spray paint, that night I was a little on the loopy side. Because it was cold, I kept my studio door closed for about 9 hours. I felt a little nauseated and wore a mask for the first half of my time, but then I became hungry and went to the house and ate a bunch of tortillas. After my tortilla consumption, I drank some Red Bull and went back down to the studio. That was when things got a little weird.

I felt like I was in an elevator and I thought my eyes were shifting focus a lot. Even though I was painting with white, I thought the pills were turning a little blue or yellow, so I applied more white to the already painted white halves (time-waster!). Near the last couple of hours, I was focused on the lyrics of songs playing from the radio and couldn’t stop giggling when I heard some words. Yeah, I’m going to take a little break from the enamel for a while.

For Next Time:

I will have to repeat the entire process again for the 28 pills that couldn’t fit on the foam board. Yes, that means spray painting the pills completely white, then painting the halves grey, and then painting the other halves white again. I got through the majority of the pills, so 28 isn’t too bad. The following step should involve attaching the pills to the canvas.


Here are some close-ups of those pills.

1 comment:

  1. such a laborious process, I like the shots of these in order a lot! and they look really good in needles :)