Frances Brushes Role to Paint a New Future

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SOME call it a sea change and others term it a tree change – but former finance officer Frances Duggan it was most definitely a me change.


“It was more to do with getting away from the sedentary lifestyle I had been leading after working in an office for 25 years,” Frances said.


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“I wanted to look for a career path where I could be creative as well as physically disciplined and working for myself meant I could lead a fitter and more balanced lifestyle.


“One of my first painting and decorating contracts went so well that the home owners recommended me to their local real estate agent and I soon learned that working in a trade was all about word of mouth and recommendation.” 


It was then one of Victoria’s Heritage painters John “Tubbsy” Tubbs took Frances under his wing and taught her the painting and decorating trade.


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“The first advice he gave me was ‘never be afraid to paint a straight line’ meaning, approach your work with confidence and always respect the tools of the trade’.” 


The next advice Frances benefitted from was when she met Sarina Russo Entrepreneurs South Ballarat Entrepreneurship Facilitator Dr Paul Miller and commenced the New Business Assistance with NEIS program last year and recently launched her business Frances Painting.


“I had worked in an office environment all my life but it’s vastly different working for yourself,” Frances said.


“Little things like getting business cards printed, marketing, creating social media and the finance side of things were initially a horror story, but Paul’s guidance was reassuring.


“He had an amazing ability to find a common ground and a level of understanding that worked well for me and he could explain things six different ways for six different people so that eventually everybody had the level of knowledge required to run a business.


“I love working for myself and have worked hard to be in a position to have three weeks advanced bookings.


“I recently painted an Indian restaurant and function centre in Carrum Downs and I am also gaining skills in plaster, render and concrete repairs.”


Five DIY tips:

1: Preparation is key

2: Protect every surface

3: Carry a rag and sand paper

4: Don’t rush it

5: Check your work


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