Every few months I like to attend a Vino Van Gogh class and do a little painting. A good friend of mine and I have established this tradition of attending one seasonally. It is not only a nice way to spend an evening, but a creative way to memorialize the passage of time and the beauty of the seasons.
We’ve painted paintings of park benches under the changing leaves of fall, and holiday trees during the winter, most recently we painted a guitar as a symbol for our love of summer music festivals. Watch my progression as you go along…
The idea for Vino Van Gogh was grown here in the Midwest, out of a love of friendship, art, and community. It brings people together in all sorts of different businesses and teaches the group, step by step, how to paint a particular painting. The classes start at 6:30pm and usually last about 2 ½ hours. The teachers guide you with cues on proper execution such as which brushes to use, what colors to choose and how to shade them together, and tips of how to make the process easier regardless of your skill level.
There are about 25 classes per month in the Quad Cities Area including Blue Grass, Eldridge, and Clinton. You can browse through locations as well as what painting will be featured for the evening on their website, which is also where you sign up for a class.
I typically shop by painting and pick one that I have always loved or appreciate for its beauty. There are many different ones represented, from local to infamous, landscapes, still lives, and portraits; the variety of art available for your own creation is wide. (That being said, you can always paint whatever you want anyway, right?)
The places Vino Van Gogh meets offer a lot of choice as well. They have them at restaurants like the Phoenix or Crust Pizzeria, both in Davenport. The coffee shops Milltown Coffee in Moline and Central Perk in Davenport host them, as does the brewery Bent River Brewing Co. in Rock Island, and the Market Café in Milan Hy-Vee. I often plan to have dinner there beforehand, enjoy a cocktail before starting, and make a night of it. (Some places don’t always have a kitchen, so I would call ahead if you do want to order food but aren’t sure if they provide it.)
The cost to Vino Van Gogh is $38 per person. While that may seem a bit pricey, you are paying for a class taught by a local artist or art educator, over the course of almost 3 hours. You walk away with some fantastic memories and a piece of art that came from you. It is a new way to experience something the Quad Cities has to offer while supporting local business and art. That, to me, is absolutely worth the price of admission. If you’re interested in signing up, like Vino Van Gogh on Facebook and check out their website here.
Maybe I’ll see you at the next one!