Last week Fabulon hosted a party.
The Painting Party
Above all I want Fabulon to be a welcoming and inspirational place. Our space use to be one of those places where patrons paint and sip wine. I like to paint, and party, and drink wine, but all together….not so much. I had a bit of a bias about the quality of work and instruction such places had to offer. I wanted to shed that image and offer more instructional classes and a high-end gallery. Are the two ideas mutually exclusive? Could the two concepts coexist? Could I pull off a paint party? I wasn’t so sure.
Last week Fabulon hosted a party. I am humbled to say that I had a blast and I believe the guests did, too! Yes, you can have a relaxed atmosphere and high quality instruction. First of all, the group was outstanding. There were thirteen women who spend their days caring for others, how they had the energy to keep going at the end of the day was inspirational. They came to celebrate the birthday of a friend, it was her thing and they were willing to put in the effort for her. You've got to love that. For some, it was way out of their own comfort level but they put on a happy face!
In actual fact, I made them all work out of their comfort zone. Perhaps because most were nurses, they were patient and willing to trust the process. I saw only happy faces.
Typically, at these parties an example of a painting is provided and guests leave with a reasonable facsimile. Step by step instructions are given by a teacher who works on a stage. I don’t work that way, which is why I thought I couldn’t do this type of job. I need to be among the students. My method is that more of a coach on the side saying “you can do it”. So, I provided some samples and demonstrations on what to do then circulated offering critiques and individualized advice to each painter. At one quiet moment, I was afraid I had overwhelmed the group with too much information. My query was met with positive feedback and reassurances that they were all happy with the challenge of learning something new.
I was happy, too. After a hiatus, I was teaching again and students were responding. The creativity was flowing. Fabulon was coming alive. One of the best parts was when my gals who were most nervous beamed with pride when someone else complemented their work. There were lots of exchanges of “look at yours” “But I like yours“ and “good job”.
In the end, each left with a painting as unique as the painter.
We recently posted our upcoming workshops on our website.
Fabulon may not advertise that we offer painting parties but we will do them for small groups of 10-15 people who may want a bit more instruction. There will be a planned theme and paintings will follow a formula with step by step instructions. The focus will be on teaching some skills but still produce a fabulous piece of art!
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