Whether you’re a naturally talented artist or cannot draw a stick figure to save your life, The Paint Place, makes you feel like you are the next Van Gogh. That is the feeling I felt last Saturday night, when I spent a girls night out there.
The weather is finally warming up in the city and people are quickly waking out of hibernation to leave the four walls which we call home. As I mentioned before, LivingSocial is full of awesome deals and they had one for The Paint Place that my cousins and I could not pass on. What you get is a two-hour class with an instructor, everything you need to paint and it is BYOB (bring your own beer, or wine) optional. We went on the The Paint Place’s website and looked through their upcoming painting sessions and fell in love with Banksy‘s “Girl With A Balloon”. For those who may not know, Banksy is a graffiti artist, who’s identity remains unknown, and created this specific artwork in London in 2002.
Signing up for a class is pretty simple, they ask for general information i.e. name, address, credit card (unless you’re like me and bought a voucher from LivingSocial, you just put a verification code).
The Paint Place has two locations, one in Manhattan and the other in Astoria. Our painting of choice was going to be taught at the Astoria location, so off to Queens we went. Transportation wise, it is fairly simple to get to, take the N or Q train to Broadway. But since we were running late, we were lucky enough to have someone drive us there, which was much faster.
The art studio is located on the second floor of an office building, right below the N and Q train line. When we stepped out of the elevator, there was a very rambunctious church service going on in the room to the right (an interesting way to be greeted to the floor) but we quickly found the studio which was in the room on the left side of the floor. As we entered we were immediately welcomed by our instructor, Greg, who we would learn by the end of the class is an AMAZING teacher. There is no assigned seating, we are free to choose, unless you come late then you have to pick from what is left.
The tables are already set up with a canvas on an easel, paintbrushes, a plate of paint, a jar of water, paper towels and an apron to protect our clothes. Since it is a BYOB establishment, they provide cups and beer/wine openers. To complete the ambiance, 90s music is played in the background.
At 8PM sharp Greg begins the class, but if you arrived early like we did, you are able to get a head start on your painting. Throughout the two hours, you befriend your table neighbors, have inappropriate conversations and truly feel happy about what you are painting. For every new step that was introduced, you were not forced to rush if you still had not finished the previous step. Everyone went at their own pace, and our instructor had no problem repeating the previous step if you had missed it. And when the class was over, you were not rushed out the door because time was up. If you needed an extra couple of minutes to do the last finishing touches, you could take them.
There is a really fun chalkboard corner where one can take pictures with your artwork and write a note or your name on it.
Overall, I truly recommend it for everyone, whether it be with your girls, boys, siblings, spouse, parents etc. It is a fun two hours of freaking out that your painting is coming out horrible to falling in love with the incredible artwork you made all by yourself. Plus you can bring alcohol, if that is an incentive for you, and if not you’ll get a good laugh from those who accidentally dip their paintbrush in their wine. What’s best of all, everyone goes home with a one of kind masterpiece!
Have you attended a painting class before? How was it? If not, are you interested in going to one in the future?