When we spoke recently with Trevor McMillian, he made an excellent point. How long does it take to get things right after a spraying course with PaintTech?
We’ve never claimed that a course would take you from zero to hero over those two days. It takes more; it takes additional hard work, practice and a lot of additional learning, but the idea of the course is to give you enough experience to get up and running to a high standard that allows you to earn and profit from spray painting.
Everyone is so individual.
Each person is different. Some people get to the next level quickly, particularly those with previous spraying experience, while it can take a bit longer for others. We also know of people who have gone home, put the sprayer back in the garage, and gone back to the roller, overwhelmed by what spraying is and how it can transform their business. Sometimes people are intrigued by change, but when it comes to it, they’re just not ready personally. But that’s why we have a growing community specifically for those who have taken our courses and work as a team to drive everyone forward together. The more seasoned sprayers in the group were once newbies like you, they asked lots of questions in the beginning, and probably the same ones that you will ask. They are the people that will reply, let you know what worked for them so that you can try for yourself.
Taking it one project at a time.
Listening to those who have been on our courses, each person takes a different amount of time to master their spray machine in a real-world environment and make profit from Spray Painting. Some leave the course and get up to speed on the first project, while others take several projects. Trevor, as mentioned in our video with him, took three attempts. By the fourth job, he had nailed the setup and technique and was comfortable spraying. But Trevor does highlight something important around building up his post-course confidence in spraying, and that’s doing it in a controlled environment. Upon leaving the course, Trevor didn’t just jump straight on the machine. Instead, he waited for that ideal home, where he knew the client wouldn’t be around and he could test out the things he learnt. Trevor knew he could make mistakes and fix them without being watched and judged by the client. We have even had students spray water on their bathroom tiles until they felt comfortable with the machine and their technique, before moving onto a client’s home. It’s whatever works best for you.
The system we teach.
When on our courses, we teach the same system that Trevor learnt from. It might be different to some of the other trainers, but as we’ve trained most of our competitors at one time or another, you’ll find a lot of overlap. We teach our way because of the effort we’ve spent getting it right. The system isn’t only created from what we’ve done right but also teaches you how to avoid everything we’ve done wrong. And that’s the important bit. Because when you’re out in the field, things will go wrong, and it’s important you know what to do about it.
Failure is a success.
I’m going to go into more details around our system but i think it’s worth quickly saying that, as you leave our academy and try it on your own you too will make mistakes. It’s all part of your learning journey, but what is fortunate when attending our courses is that we’ve probably already made the same mistake while we were learning, and therefore you’ll learn the best way to mitigate issues and quickly bounce back.
From one of Thomas Edison’s famous quotes.
“Many of life’s failures are people who did not realise how close they were to success when they gave up.”
As trainers who have been there and done your job, we know what you will go through. I remember once, literally throwing the spray machine in the skip, and I thought to the hell with it. I went straight back to the brush and roller. But looking back, I know I did that because I didn’t have a system in place to help me get the best out of spraying. We had to develop our own over several painstaking years. That system is now the basis of what we teach today, with more up-to-date changes and the knowledge that there is no longer a one size fits all approach to teaching a system.
Back to the system we teach
Okay, let’s pick back up about our system because although I talk a lot about our systems, to get that across, we realise that we need to understand the people in the room. As I said, there’s no one set spraying order to fit all. So, to understand you, we try to comprehend the best terminology to communicate things in. Take the order we spray in. For brush and roller, most people tell us that they would paint a room from the ceilings and work their way down. Great, so would we.
But spraying doesn’t have to be like that. Our order of spraying started with the woodwork. Then we would mask up the woodwork and do the walls, mask up the walls and spray the ceilings. This worked amazingly well, with the only snag being the pull when we took the masking tape off, which for some decorators can be a serious downer on their day, on their mood, and, like me, makes them want to throw their sprayer in the skip. But we teach how to get around that or what to do when it does happen if you use that process. We’ve been there, done it, and learned from it, and while some things are not avoidable, it’s knowing what to do next.
Killing the overspray.
Overspray is another issue that always comes up, and it’s fundamental in stopping decorators from making a profit from spray painting and giving up altogether. But again, it’s something that mostly only untrained spray painters can’t deal with, and we provide advice within the system we teach on overcoming it.
So, for 90% of you who experience overspray, it’s either down to the machine you have. A budget machine will give you a budget finish. Or it’s down to the tip, filter, pressure, and the combination you have all these set up in. Or the most common issue, distance from the surface. All these factors stack up, and those who have tried to learn via YouTube won’t have learned how to fix their overspray issue. They don’t tell you the right combination of tip, filter and pressure.
As I mention above, systems change, and although we teach you our system to make a profit from spraying, we do it in a way that the students on the day can adjust to. We realise that your system will adapt, so, as we have done with Trevor and many others we have taught, we get you to write it down as a multiple-step process. This means you can change any step of the process without changing the whole system. But, like a broom, you might change the handle and then the brush, making it a completely new broom. With our process, you might change each step one at a time over several years, making it your own system, changing it from what we taught. But that’s the power of our training. It allows you to do that and be confident in doing so.
But it doesn’t stop there. If learning has taught you one thing, it’s how powerful it can be. It shows you how to get the best out of other people’s tried and tested systems and how to make them your own. So, once you have that, let’s say, from the Intensive Airless Course, it’s time to learn more from the Kitchens & Furniture ON SITE Spraying Course. Again, take what we teach and learn to adapt it to your own system.
Anyone who stops learning is old, at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. – Henry Ford
Back to the beginning
But let’s jump back to the beginning, asking, how long it takes to profit from spray painting? The honest answer is that it all depends on how you learn. It could be quick if it’s you choose a PaintTech training course, with the additional after-course support and network. But if it’s via YouTube videos or just winging it and seeing what happens, then it could take a lot longer, if it ever happens at all. You might just end up throwing the whole thing in the skip like I did. Luckily, I got it back out and persevered, as we might not be here today if I hadn’t done that!
A final quote to help sum up why our courses are interactive, why we adapt to the people in the room, and why it’s important to us that you learn at your own speed.
Tell me, and I forget, teach me, and I may remember, involve me, and I learn. – Benjamin Franklin
To learn more about our courses, please head to our website, where you’ll find a list of all our upcoming courses with dates and prices. Remember, if you are CITB registered or planning to be, you can get on our courses fully funded by CITB. Our aim is not just to teach you how to hold a gun. But to teach you how to profit from spray painting in this challenging, ever-changing environment.
No one has to work alone.