Earlier in the week, G and I had decided to go out on Friday night for a quiet dinner. As I was trying to think of a restaurant, an idea came to mind. I had received an email promoting a few paint nights, so I checked what was available. I found that there were 5 different options to choose from, at a variety of venues around town. Not having done this before, I wasn’t sure how to choose, so I just selected the painting that looked the nicest.
I chose to surprise G, and not tell her until the Friday morning. She was thrilled. My work meetings were cancelled last minute on Friday morning, so I decided to take a desperately needed day off. I ended up working on some paperwork and tax preparation (I’m thinking a root canal would have been less painful – LOL), but it didn’t really matter, I was excited about going out.
The kids were excited about spending the night without supervision. When we asked, they had a night planned, including XBOX, movies, games, and snacking. Not sure how long they thought we would be gone for.
It was snowy, so driving conditions were slow. We gave ourselves extra time and arrived early. The event was being held at a diner style restaurant in a posh, hipster style neighborhood. I actually really enjoy that part of town.
Lots of good, positive vibes. As we entered the restaurant, there was no doubt we were in the right place. Several rows of tables were setup with canvases on easles, paint palettes, brushes and apron/smocks. There were about 6 people already there, each with glasses of wine in hand. “I’m digging this so far”, I thought to myself as I smiled at G. There was the artist set up at the front. She smiled and welcomed us.
By 6:00, the whole group had arrived and everyone took their seats. Everyone was warming up, having come in from the wintery weather. I looked at the sample painting, a grayscale giraffe with a beautiful red heart shaped spot. I started to worry. We only have 2 hours to do that? I can be pretty artsy, but this seemed ambitious. I looked at my empty canvas and wondered if I would need to dash out at the end, so that nobody would see my final product.
I decided to paint my giraffe opposite to G’s, so they could be hung together and the 2 giraffes could be looking at each other. The instructor started to provide the introduction and describe how this works for the newbies in the group (that would be me). As she continued, the introduction melted into the first few things we needed to do and before we knew it, there was paint on our canvases. In detail, she explained each of the next steps. I slowly felt my anxiety fade away with each brushstroke. Now that I think about it, it may have been the Pinot Grigio’s calming effect, but at any rate, the worry of failure faded and I gained a renewed optimism that this might just be possible.
As the night G and I covered the canvas with paint, we sipped our drinks, laughed, talked and had a great time. You could hear that everyone else in the group was also enjoying it. We worked through the steps with the instructor and realized this is as much a social event as it was a painting course.
As we approached the end of the 2 hours, I was amazed, both of our canvases actually looked good. They were not professional paintings by any stretch and our giraffes looked differently, but they were OUR paintings and it was a heck of a lot of fun getting them done together. I loved them both. A few finishing touches and it was time for us to sign our masterpieces.
I highly recommend this for anyone, whether it’s for a girl’s night out, a romantic couple or just a group of friends.
We waited a few more minutes for the last of the paint to dry and we had officially finished our first paint nite together. Now, we just need to find a wall to hang our paintings on.