Recently, I took some painting classes.
We’re all artists in our own way aren’t we – the creative beings that we are?
I’d been wanting to have a proper go at painting for quite a while, with acrylics and oil paints – rich and vibrant.
I scoured painting classes all over the place, eyeing up the likes of ‘Paint Like Picasso’, ‘Sip and Paint’, ‘Sip Paint & Eat’ , Disco and Paint’. Honestly, the titles they come up with nowadays. And no I wasn’t interested in life paining, no nudes, no thanks.
With no hesitation, I ruled them all out since I wanted to concentrate on landscapes and Picasso wasn’t really into that sort of thing. I didn’t want to be tipsy while trying to steady my brush and as for dancing, well I’d probably forget all about the painting and get ‘lost in music’ (pun intended).
I settled for a good old ‘Intensive’ painting class for beginners, plain, simple and to the point; but despite my assertions it ‘did’ get off to a totally unexpected booze infused start!!
Would you like a drink?
On day one, I wandered down a narrow corridor looking for the room for my group, and found myself amidst a lively bunch – surrounding a trolly of wines and snacks, one of them offered me a drink of my choice, it would have been rude to decline.
We agreed that contrary to the song, red wine does not go to our heads – white wine does. #UB40
Turns out they were the ‘advanced’ painting group and were celebrating their finished gallery of paintings on display throughout the corridor.
I had to drink mine quickly because my painting tutor didn’t want us bringing drinks into the workshop – and clearly hadn’t cottoned-on to the booze focused trend with painting classes nowadays!
Amuse Yourself: Choose Your Painting Classes
While we’re on the subject of course titles and booze, let me share a few more I came across that might raise a brow (and certainly a glass):
- How to Paint with alcohol inks. (For a split second I thought that said ‘How to Paint with Alcoholics’) 👀
- Paint, Dine and Wine….(sounds fancy) 🍷
- Neon Naked Life Drawing (Neon 🤔 that’s different)
- Sip N’ Stroke Paint Party. Exact quote: “Painting session with a twist. Unleash your creativity 🍹cocktail in one hand, paintbrush in the other, Hip Hop + R&B in the loudspeakers.” 🔊 🔊
- Sip and Sketch 🥂
- Sculpt and Sip 🍸
- Watercolour and Wine Evening
- Sip N Paint Exotica 🔞
- Pen and a Pint 🍺
- Draw and Drink (notice a bit of a theme emerging here?) 💫
- Paint Your Feelings (This one is run from a place in London called…wait for it….‘The Breakdown Room’ E9 7PX – I kid you not, look it up on Eventbrite if you don’t belive me)
- Paint Your Dog, Acrylic Painting Workshop. Exact Quote:“Or you could paint someone else’s dog and give it to them as a gift! Come and paint without feeling any pressure or worry that you’ll be the worst in the room, or that it might be too difficult for you”
- Paint Your Own House!
I think you get the idea.
Anyway, why paining, what’s brought this on then?
I’ve taken truck loads of photographs over the years, many of which are scenic landscape types, beaches, sunsets, views etc… I thought having a go at painting some of them would be a quirky way to bring them back to life, give them a greater meaning and put them to good use, instead of having them sat forgotton, on memory cards and external hard drives.
Plus, it might be quite nice to have my own art work on the walls, instead of someone else’s all the time. Paintings have always been one of my favourite souvenires to buy on holidays.
Having done some classes I’m now thinking I shouldn’t limit myself to views and lanscapes, maybe have a go at any and everything in my photograph collection!! It’s going to be interesting lol, but each painting will be rooted in a real memory and place I’ve experienced, even if it means nothing to anyone else. That’s what will make it worth the time and effort for me.
So How Did It Go, With The Painting Classes?
In three words I’d say:
Technically that’s four words!!
There is so much more to painting than I’d ever assumed. Just experimenting with colour mixing is a whole new tricky world.
Textures, sketching, scraping, building layers of colour, light, shadows and tone, it’s all quite intense…..my tutor said many artists spend days, weeks, even months on one peice – fine tuning it, amend and blurring things out….on and on it goes until they’re happy with the masterpeice!
I’ve come to realise that painting is a great way to give the mind some space, let it drift – the classes were three hours each time but they felt like 30 mins to be honest, not long enough!!
It was also really interesting to see how each person in the group approached things differently and produced such unique versions of the same object or brief – love that!! (some ignored the brief all together and went off down their own merry path – rebellious artists lol).
Create, express, unwind, relax. It doesn’t matter if nobody else ‘gets it’ – as long as you ‘get it’ and enjoy what you’ve created.
Now I’m having serious thoughts of converting the box bedroom/office into an art studio lol…..you definately want to try and create a dedicated space, where you can set everything up, with optimum natural light!!
Was it just a phase?
No. I’ve had my fair share of fleeting hobbies in the past but I think I’m going to make this one a long term thing, it’s so relaxing and therapeutic, maybe with some music in the background, painting away….I can see this becoming a permanent habit, albeit a slow burner at the moment until I get myself set up.
Above: removing unused paint and cleaning the palette creates a nice colourful mess!
What next: A shopping list of supplies
I’ll do a paint shopping post once I actually gather a good range of supplies together and make a start. I’ve got a few bits but will build this up gradually…
You’ll probably see some art related posts popping up on this blog now and again to mix things up, once I get into it a bit more – watch this space!