It’s About the (Paint) Journey, Not the Destination

Who doesn’t get the itch to express their creative side every now and then? I have always been a creative soul and love to draw and paint, but sadly I hadn’t made much time to be creative lately. That all changed last week when my best friend Kelly recommended a “Girl Date” involving wine and painting!
Ready for action

I am sure many of your inboxes have been bombarded with emails from LivingSocial and Groupon advertising deals for paint nights. I am also willing to bet that your friends have been posting pictures about their fun times at these painting outings as well (some more Picasso than Da Vinci). This has been a trend for a few months now and I finally tried it out last Saturday with my best friends and had a complete blast! After my fun experience, I think you should try it too!

The deal was extremely reasonable- $22 on LivingSocial for a 3 hour class which is well worth the time. After purchasing the deal, we went to their website to choose which date we wanted to get our creativity on, based on availability and the painting choices for the month (every class featured a different painting). We chose a Saturday where the selection was “Yellow Tulips.” Awww Tulips, a girl’s best friend.  (Take notice gentlemen).  I really liked the idea of basing your date on the painting, because different paintings “speak” to different people. Seeing as my friends and I have known each other for 15 years, we are pretty in tune with each other and all loved the flowers. The date was booked!

The day had come and our Saturday started off with breakfast at The Cottage in La Jolla per Michelle’s recommendation. I will save this for another post, but if you can beat the crowds, breakfast is amazing there – from delicious pesto scrambles to refreshing fruit plates!The Cottage Breakfast! We had a little bit of everything!

A few blocks down from the Cottage was the paint site at Roppongi Restaurant on Prospect Street. I would recommend getting there early to make sure you get the seat you want, with enough seats for everyone in your group to sit next to eachother. Be sure to a seat front-and-center, because at times it was hard to see exactly what the instructor was doing. There was a set up of 40 or so canvasses supported by easels, individual palettes, brushes and water for the event. I was in heaven! We chose our table for 4 (perfect), put our smocks on and ordered fruity adult beverages.

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 An example of “Tulips in Bloom” was showcased up front next to a blank canvas. Our instructor began painting a duplicate and the group followed along… which became more interesting with every sip of my “Cove Colado.”   Not particularly artsy? No need to worry! The instructor, Deron, did an excellent job explaining the steps in both an artsy and technical way for painters of all different skill levels to understand. He emphasized that the class was about having fun, relaxing and enjoying yourself- not about the end product. (It’s about the journey, not the destination mantra). In the end, we all held up our paintings for the camera and said “cheese.” Despite everyones different levels of paint expertise, the 40 paintings looked surprisingly similar, each with their own personal touches. See? Anyone can do it!!

Classes run three hours in length, but given the great environment and flowing drinks, it could have just as easily run for five hours. The women around me made sure the instructor knew it (all jokes of course)! Thinking we would have plenty of time to finish, we barely finished at the end of hour three (this was my only complaint). We all had a great time – albeit some moments were “stressful” as we had to work faster then we wanted. The most entertaining part of the whole class was listening to people laugh at their progress and hearing their hilarious comments that they made with their friends. One woman couldn’t stop snorting behind me! People were laughing at their work, chatting with friends, and letting the paint brush take control.

All in all, it was a great memory with my best friends. We collaborated together when one or more of us were behind and had a TON of laughs. The instructor team was organized, funny, and on the ball whenever someone needed more supplies or help on a painting step. I plan on trying one with my Mom and boyfriend soon. We’ll see how that turns out!

So the next time you are about to hit “delete” on that pesky LivingSocial paint deal, make the purchase, grab a buddy and give it a shot!

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Check out their website to see their upcoming paint dates!
www.paintingandvino.com

–Briana

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