Last night, I finally returned to my roots. Before I became a dancer (in college) and a yogini (also in college) and a teacher (you guessed it, in college) I used to paint. However, I was never one of those artists with tons of natural talent. No, I've always been more of the hard-working type of artist. One who needs to keep plugging away at it, possibly for many more decades, before a modicum of success and skill might blossom.
But last night was a blast!
I attended an event hosted by Pub and Paint (www.pubandpaint.com) at Portalli's restaurant in downtown, historic Ellicott City. The venue was comfortable; we were seated upstairs in a large dining room at two long tables. About 30 participants showed up to paint a picture called "Spring Trees." This is an original painting created by the owner of Pub and Paint. It was considered an "easy" painting and one I figured I might have a shot at copying.
Several members of my writers' group joined me for an evening of painting. I highly recommend these events if you're looking for a fun night out. A waiter comes around and takes drink orders. My friends and I did not drink, unless you count a cup of green tea! But most participants used the alcoholic beverages to free up their creative juices. Portalli's has an extensive drink menu including several kinds of sangria, about a dozen wines by the glass in both red and white, and many interesting brews.
Our artist/teacher/guide was the company owner. His bubbly, fun personality made the evening lighthearted and encouraged everyone to laugh as we worked. He insisted there were no mistakes, which is an attitude I tried to absorb as I painted. Luckily I had my friend Susan by my side, a artist as well as a writer, so I was able to get some help by cheating off her masterpiece. She had TONS of ideas about how to make the basic artwork we were given even better. So did many of the other participants, some of whom went wildly off in their own directions. With great success, I might add. I stuck to the original design. With moderate success.
The class was scheduled from 7-9pm, but didn't get started until close to 7:30. By 9:30, several folks were leaving but I was still trying to fix my trees. I think I was doing fairly well until we got to the final details: the leaves and the flowers in the grass. This is where my technique really fell down. I could have used another hour or two to get those details right.
Alas, it was time to head home. We had our photos taken with our paintings as we exited. If you'd like to peruse the group and our artwork, go to Pub and Paint on Facebook. You'll see what I mean about my details. Here's my painting:
Pub and Paint is just one of many companies offering this type of event in local venues. However, this company is locally owned and operated. They hold classes and events all around Baltimore. They offer various discounts and coupons on a regular basis, so visit the website to get more information.
Maybe we can paint together next time!