Blooming on Canvas promoters Adele Hamilton (left) and Michelle Doherty and art facilitator Avikali Lomavatu (centre) recently welcomed guests to one of their painting sessions.

Blooming on Canvas promoters Adele Hamilton (left) and Michelle Doherty and art facilitator Avikali Lomavatu (centre) recently welcomed guests to one of their painting sessions.

Release your inner artist with Blooming on Canvas

Whether you’ve never picked up a paintbrush in your life but always wanted to try it, Blooming on Canvas has something for everyone.

Whether you’ve never picked up a paintbrush in your life but always wanted to try it, or painted years ago and want to try it again, Blooming on Canvas has something for everyone.

It’s a way to promote art in our lives and our communities, showcase local artists and support local businesses, but mainly it’s a fresh, fun idea for a party, say art enthusiasts Michelle Doherty and Adele Hamilton.

Blooming on Canvas, a template of social painting parties, is now thriving in Williams Lake, as Doherty and Hamilton book up to 20 guests per party at a local bar or restaurant.

“Participants can purchase a meal, appetizers and beverages and then try their hand at painting with the guidance of an art facilitator,” Doherty says. “It’s a fun, unique get-together for friends and family for any occasion — to let your inner child come out and paint.”

Doherty says she met Adele in February 2015 and in April they started looking for a business idea to do together.

“We wanted something fresh, new, fun and interactive with the public. Adele had a friend who went to one of these parties in Calgary and loved it. We looked into it and by July it was up and running in Williams Lake,” she explains.

Feedback from Blooming on Canvas guests, as well as the local bars and restaurants where they meet, has been enthusiastic, and that they have many repeat customers. To date they book painting parties at Signal Point, the Loon, Boston Pizza and Oliver’s, and have held a house party at Chimney Lake. They have also held a party for teens.

“The appeal is that anyone can do this: parents, kids, co-workers, families,” Doherty says. It’s intergenerational fun. It makes a great birthday party, retirement party, Christmas party and a date night. Bottom line — anyone can come, you don’t have to bring anything, and at the end everyone goes home with a fully completed piece of art.

“One lady brought her retired dad and one young lady came with her grandmother — it was so sweet for them to do this together.”

Blooming on Canvas is flexible and adaptable. You can choose a session by the artist, the painting or the restaurant, and you can come solo or in a group.

They are looking for more artists, but Doherty notes they are not there to teach a class, they’re there to facilitate a fun, two-hour paint experience.

The Blooming on Canvas experience is a big benefit to artists, she notes.

“It’s a huge satisfaction seeing people love the experience, and getting to share your own passion and inspiration. You get to see people giving themselves permission not to be intimidated by art: it’s very powerful.”

Hamilton adds the experience is akin to getting back to being a child delighted by painting a picture.

“People don’t feel intimidated by this because it’s so easy and so fun,”Hamilton says. “You see smiles all around the room. Our facilitators are artists themselves and they walk you through it.

“There is no competition; each piece is unique. I believe that creative thing is in all of us. I like the breaks when people get up and walk around and see what the others are painting: it’s very inspiring and affirming.”

Participants don’t have to be artists to enjoy Blooming on Canvas.

“We’re looking for people who say they ‘can’t paint,’” Doherty says. “If you think of yourself as an artist, that’s great, and if you think you’re not, that’s even better.”

For more information about Blooming on Canvas, visit www.bloomingoncanvas.com, email bloomingoncanvas@gmail.com, phone 250-398-0300 or follow them on Facebook ‘Blooming on Canvas — Painting Parties.’

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