Expensive Paint – How the Other Half Lives and a 10 Day Countdown

Seeking Spring Sunflowers Nancy Medina
Seeking Spring Sunflowers, 20X20, oil, detail, in progress


I’ve got an update on the dream art studio for you, we’ve just added one more cool feature to the big plans – an antique brick wall! The contractor has a meeting with the town folks (cross your fingers and toes, building rules in Flower Mound are strict)  and as soon as the spade turns that first bit of earth, you can bet I’ll be documenting it for you! Before I share my story about my encounter with expensive paint, a million thanks to every one of you who came out this past weekend to my art show at the Dallas Arboretum. Sending 21 paintings to new homes was incredibly exciting, having a record breaking show was a thrill, but none of this compared to how it felt each time a student came in and greeted me. How lucky, how incredibly kind life has been to bring such gorgeous, creative friends into my life as my students. My students make me I feel like I’ve got a little angel dust on my shoulders, and someone extremely loving watching over me every step of this journey, that started over five years ago, when I took the leap and said goodbye to the corporate life.

I left behind my job as the director of a national medical journal, and dove headfirst into a full-time life of painting and teaching. As a parting gift, the doctors pitched in and sent me a $1,000 gift certificate to Jerry’s Artarama. I was in awe. I couldn’t believe it! What would you buy if you had a $1000 art gift certificate? Leave a comment below, because I want to hear! I remember seeing the email arrive, and shrieking with joy, on a Tuesday night at my Mom’s house. She wanted to know what all the fuss was about, and I immediately exclaimed, “Mom, I’m gonna buy some expensive paint!” So, naturally, I googled expensive paint.

Vasari, Mussini, Artisti, oh my! Is this how some girls feel about diamonds, I wonder? I found a 40 ml itty bitty tube of cobalt blue for *pause for dramatic effect* $400. It contained real lapis lazuli. Rest assured, I did not spend almost half of my $1000 gift certificate on one tube of paint of cobalt blue. I did, however, order a boatload of all my Rembrandt favs and gave myself a special treat of a tube of yellow gold Schmincke Mussini.

For the most part, I stick to my favorite Rembrandts for now. Every now and then, I break out the Schmincke gold, and dazzle the belly buttons on a few daisies. It’s good stuff, and I’m worth it! And every daisy belly button could do with a little sparkle. Besides, I like Hershey’s chocolate just as much as Ghiradelli, so think of all the money I’m saving in my chocolate budget to spend on paint. Totally makes sense to me, don’t you think?



PS: A BIG announcement is coming May 11, and I’ll share it with you during a live Facebook painting video that evening. While you’re waiting, my free online lesson has launched. Roll up your painty sleeves and dive into bold, fearless color with me with Five Tips for Brilliant Color! Here’s your free lesson link thingy – enjoy!

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Nancy Medina

Nancy is a master signature artist and instructor with over 1800 online students from around the world. She has worked with Disney, served on the art faculty of the Dallas Arboretum, and teaches workshops in France, Italy and across the US. More about Nancy

Reader Interactions


  1. Hi Nancy, your story is so inspiring to me. I have just left, shall we say, a very ‘restrictive’ marriage and plan to pour my energy into painting now, it feels like the right thing to do and I know I have an angel or two behind me! So glad to have found your online courses, thank you for your positivity and for sharing your knowledge with us.

    Very best wishes
    Angie (U.K.)

  2. Oh my my!!!I what a tough decision. I have lots of paint and brushes galore. I’ m happy with my easel as well as my portable set-up. So the money would go for frames. Yes, a ready made frame…or two…or ten. I show my pictures in a co-op gallery and I am always buying frames from Jerry’s to make my work more appealing. Good luck with your difficult decision, Nancy!

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