My brother is an artist – a pretty amazing one. In fact, he’s so talented that he makes his living with his art. Me? Well, let’s just say I’ve perfected the stick figure. Growing up with a brother that had loads of talent I always felt like I shouldn’t even bother trying – I would never be as good as him and honestly, I never much had the desire. I appreciate artistic ability and I’ve always been super jealous of anyone that has even a drop of it.
I’ve definitely tried. In high school I took a painting class and multiple pottery classes. I’ve dabbled with photography, scrapbooking, metalwork, sewing, needlepoint, cross stitch, and woodwork. I finally settled on crocheting (even though I can’t follow a pattern to save my life) and photography. And for years that’s been my creative outlet.
Then a couple of my friends opened a rad new store called The Local Artisan Collective and decided to go ahead and offer a multitude of classes for people just like me: those with the desire to learn and create but haven’t had much exposure or experience. Anyone and everyone can find a class that taps into their interests. In my case, I want to try them all! So many classes, so little time.
The amazing local artist, Susan Snyder, teaches some of these classes and I recently jumped at the opportunity to join one – Wheels of Seasons Drawing and Watercolor Pencil Project.
For some reason I felt nervous walking into the class. Although most of the folks attending were friends of mine, I still felt a bit overwhelmed. I can’t art! I can’t draw or paint!
Susan was amazing. Yes, she’s incredibly talented. However, she’s so down to earth and funny and instantly put us all at ease. She eased us into the project by discussing her art and what inspires her. The animals and plants that she paints are ones we can find looking right outside our front doors. We leafed through books and handled different animal skulls while she talked about her methods and tricks and answered all our questions.
We sketched a bit and then tried a few different methods of watercolor. As a gal who hasn’t used watercolor paints since she was in pre-school, this was very new to me. Soon I was mixing colors and stepping outside my comfort zone and loving it.
As we made our wheels we were encouraged to think about what we wanted to include. We could put as many or as few sections we wanted. I chose to include 12 on mine – one for each month of the year. As for the subject matter, I made a couple of personal goals: 1 – Each month this year I’m going to explore something new, whether it be a new hiking trail or a new destination, and 2 – I’m going to continue to paint.
Those of us in the class loved it so much we’ve decided to meet monthly to continue working on our wheels. Tonight is our second meeting and I’m bringing my 11-year old daughter to start her own wheel. (I think the artistic gene skipped me and carried on to her because that girl is talented!)
The Local Artisan Collective offers a large variety of classes every month. They can be found by visiting their Facebook page or their website: www.localartisancollective.com. I can’t even express how amazing these classes are. You can learn the art of glassblowing, silversmithing, pottery, painting, and so much more, all with talented masters of the craft!
Thank you, Artisan Collective, for giving me the opportunity to try something new and to discover that hey, I actually can art!