Art is a many-splendored (and funky) thing.

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I made this in class. I called “Birds”

There are several businesses, some called Sipping n’ Painting or Drink and Draw (names along these lines) that sell art classes where you can buy booze and draw. There are some classes in watercolors, some in acrylic paint, others in oil — you can choose among variety of wines or beers while creating art. No one has to drink — but the idea is both to let go of inhibitions and maybe be more talented (or at least feel that way through a prism of alcohol).

I consider myself an introverted extrovert. This just means that although I have no problems socializing with people, though sometimes I would prefer not to. Anxiety hasn’t been much of a problem for me — I suffer from depression now and again. This also means that I don’t have to drink to have a good time, but I do enjoy my booze. A while back I have stopped drinking during the week (except for a glass of Shabbat wine on Friday nights), but still have a drink or two on the weekends (more than that, and I get migraines, and trust me, it’s a great deterrent). And I dearly love to draw and paint, although that’s one pastime that usually gets put on the back burner.

So, after going to a class where we practiced watercolors and I drank a glass of sangria with my friends, it occurred to me that I can do this at home (and have two glasses because I don’t have to drive afterwards.) Another bonus is that I don’t have to paint what everyone else is painting. I can paint whatever I want to paint.

I don’t know where I picked this up, but there is one painting technique that I just love — it’s almost like a tie-dye watercolor because the colors are distinct but they also blend together. I used to do this with my kids when they were little, and it requires no talent, no models, a minimum of equipment, and complete freedom of color choices. Grab watercolors, any at all, even the cheap, plastic set you can generally buy everywhere that even comes with its own paintbrush, and watercolor paper. Tape the paper down (once the watercolors are applied, the paper tends to curl and warp). Grab a glass for water, and begin: load up the brush with one color and splatter it onto the paper. Now rinse off the brush, and do the same with another color. It’s absolutely fine if the colors bleed and blend into each other — it’s even preferable. While the paint is wet, blow on it, to create a sort of a branch design. It the end of this stage, you get a lovely, colorful splatter-filled picture.

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This is my work in progress. I still have some outlining to do, but the difference is clearly seen.

Now, to finish up: once it is dry (which can take anywhere from an hour to overnight, up to you), take a fine-tipped ink pen (or a Sharpie) that is either black, dark blue or red, or whatever darker color tickles your fancy, and begin outlining. Even the little dots could be outlined.

After you are done, the picture is complete. It’s really a brilliant way to spend a couple of hours on a rainy Sunday, with or without a child by your side. You can have your favorite alcoholic beverage, or a cup of coffee or tea, or nothing at all. The point isn’t to get drunk, the point is to have fun, and I can promise you, you will while doing this. At least I always do.

Written by

Writer and storyteller, immigrant, wife, mom, knitter, collector of jokes, lover of cheap, sweet wine.

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