Have you ever fancied yourself an artist, if you only had the chance? Have you ever wanted to take lessons? Do you like to hang out and drink with your friends? If it's even one “yes” then you need to try “Paint and Sip”
This brilliant concept comes from Whimsy Paint and Sip Art Studio. There are other ways to enjoy their facilities: open studio (come use their supplies, for a fee, paint what you want), kids' classes, and of course, the ever popular Paint and Sip sessions.
I've been twice now and I'm really learning some cool techniques. Everything is already set up for you when you arrive, you just have to show your ID and pick a seat (reservations required). Next you head for the bar! Prices are completely reasonable, and they have quite the selection of non-alcoholic but special drinks, too.
We start with a group toast, and then the teacher begins taking us through the steps of the painting. Very calmly she explains that you just “go for it” and “we can fix most things”. Leaving you to complete just that one step, and let it dry, she cranks up the music (the old rock favorites of the 70s and 80s along with some contemporary music) and then wanders the room answering questions. There are about 35 students, so it's not hard to get her attention if you want help.
So you're painting, and drinking, and giggling with your friends, and watching an actual painting come to life before your eyes. Dancing in your seat, singing along to the music, you realize you CAN make some of the clouds look for away and some near. You learn how to mix paint, how to use the white to your advantage, when your brush should be wet and when it should be drier.
Of course you're not a perfect artist on the first try. The wheat grass still confounds me, though the instructor admitted some ten year old must have rammed my tiny brush into the bottom of the glass and brought me a new one. Helped a lot, but fixing the wheat grass wasn't really an option since I liked my mountains so much.
We (my Swissie and my friend) picked our class not just for scheduling convenience, but for which painting they were featuring. Swissie, who is now a five-time veteran decided to go for the option of painting something else that she liked -their walls are covered with samples from previous classes. That's really nice in another way, too. Scattered around the room they have several versions of the “same” painting so that you can see the variety and non-conformity. Creativity and personal choice is highly encouraged.
I don't know if they have something like this in your area, but I sure hope you do. I've linked their website , and this is their facebookpage. With your permission, they take pictures of you while you're painting and as you're walking out the door with your finished masterpiece. Then you're on fb on their page! Almost famous and all that...(no, as of 6:30 this morning, our pictures weren't up yet.)
As you can see by our grins, a good time was had by all!