Painters use paints and coatings to cover walls of
buildings. Abilities necessary for this job include being able to differentiate
slight colour variations, having a good sense of colour coordination and a good
knowledge of home décor. They must be physically fit, as well as precise and
There are several different types of painters: residential,
master, and chemical painters, among others. Each perform different tasks, but
most of the time, painters work in groups. The bigger the task, the larger the
Residential painters are responsible for talking with
clients to satisfy their wants and needs, and to offer advice about texture and
colour. They must know about colour patterns and blending techniques, and be
creative. After consulting with clients, painters make a cost estimate. They
remove any old wallpaper and fill holes and cracks before painting. They must
sand the walls to make them smooth before applying a sealing primer. Next, they
use a variety of tools such as brushes, rollers, or spray guns to apply the
paint or wallpaper.
Master painters work at the highest level and have many
responsibilities. They choose and purchase paints and supplies, do cost
estimates, and market their services. They must have a high level of expertise
in the painting business and know how to do everything.
Chemical painters work in manufacturing plants. Some test
paint, while others paint cars or other machines. It is important that they are
precise and measure the paint accurately, and a have good knowledge of the
chemical properties of paint.
Painters can work for painting and building contractors, or
be self-employed, working inside and outside homes, on construction sites, or
inside plat and labs. Working condition include painting outdoors for up to 12
hours a day, lifting rollers and brushes over their head for long periods of
times, or setting up and taking down scaffolding. Construction sites can also
be dangerous, and being exposed to chemical or paint fumes is toxic, so they
must wear protective gear. Exterior painting is mostly done during the summer,
where painters work about 60 to 70 hours per week, with little vacation, while
interior painters work more consistently. They also work on tighter deadlines.
Painters are often paid by the hour. An apprentice painter
may earn about $14 an hour, which increases with more experience. Experienced
painters earn between $17 and $30 an hour, which adds up to $35 000 to $62 000
a year, if they can find full-time work.
Being a painter doesn’t require taking a specific program.
They must have a high school diploma. They learn their skills on the job. They
do not necessarily have to go to college or take an apprenticeship program,
though it may be useful for being hired by an employer. However, they must
receive a certification, which requires at least three years of experience.
Passing this certification will earn you the Red Seal, which allows you to work
in any province or territory in Canada.
Useful courses to take in grade 12 in high school include
English, math, science, social studies, business & management,
entrepreneurship, construction technology, and drafting & design.