My name is Levi Agostino and
I’m a painter and decorator. Hows it going there Levi?
Hows that wall going? Yeah, nearly finished. Good, that walls
looking really good. That colour looks nice. Listen, when we finish these
walls in here we’ll move off into the laundry and we’ll
use the same colour, okay. Okay, sure.
Great mate. I work for my father Eldo as part of
my four year TAFE apprenticeship. We mainly do new work which
consists of painting new houses but we also
repaint old houses. The TAFE training was good because
you learnt the theory side of it so while you’re on the job you’re
learning the skills to do the painting and then at TAFE you’re learning
the things such as calculations. How to calculate paint quantities.
How to calculate quotes. You are learning what paint
is made up of. You are learning about colours. How
to understand colours. You are learning the
mechanical side of spraying. On the job you just
do the work. It is important to be a team player
in this trade because you can not paint a house by yourself or
make enough money by yourself. You need to communicate
effectively so that the jobs get coordinated properly
and finished on time. It takes about five days to finish a new house.
That’s inside and out and that’s a standard job for us and
that’s with a team of three people. Dad and I left home at
seven AM this morning. Levi, is the ute packed and ready to go to work?
Yep, it’s all ready to go. Lets go on our way then. A lot of people think that painting is
easy but painting is quite a hard job. It’s physically hard and not only that
but it’s quite a stressful job as well. We’re always pressured by
other trades to get the job finished so that they can
come in and do their work. We’re always pressured by supervisors
so that we can get the job finished. And we also have the clients
on our backs because they are always eager to
move into their house. Glossing would have to be the
hardest part of the job. It’s a perfectionist job because you
need perfect surface preparation because when you have glossed it shows up any
minor imperfections in your surface. shows good, nearly done?
Yeah, nearly done mate. Looking good. I enjoy being able to sit down and relax
at lunch break after hours of hard work. What are you doing
on the weekend Levi? Not sure yet. Probably playing soccer on
Sunday but that’s about it. Who you playing? Just mates down at Portell Oval. Little friendly game hey?
Yeah? What about yourself? You getting up to anything?
Probably just going for a surf hey. Levi, what we will do now, we
will just go through these quantities here on our pay sheet
and check off the meterage. We’ll start with the ceilings. We’ve got 302 square meters
of ceilings and we need to work out just how much
material we are going to need. Well, 302 square meters… I work for my dad but on the
job he’s my teacher and boss. And when I get home he’s happy to give me extra
training on the business side of the trade. When we’re on the job we are there to work
so my dad treats me like any other employee. This client has requested that his
doors be done in imitation wood grain. I enjoy doing wood grain because it
allows me to use the artistic side of my trade and I get a great sense
of achievement out of it as well. I learnt decorative effects
at TAFE but I had an advantage because I studied
art at high school. It’s very time consuming and
picky but when I stand back and have a look at the final product
it is very worth while. Although we do start early at seven o’clock
we do get to finish at three thirty in the afternoon which gives me plenty of
free time to do the things I really enjoy. And where I live there’s
lots of water ways and so one of the things I do
love doing is canoeing. Getting my registration means that I can work
by myself and do jobs over the value of $200. Getting my registration also means
that I can start my own business. I’m thinking about going
into partnership with dad and possibly even putting
on my own apprentice.