If you're self-conscious about your lack of artistic talent or manual dexterity with a paintbrush, take heart — a few glasses of Pinot Grigio might be all that's standing in your way on the path to artistic greatness.
The Painting Lounge, located in none other than Brooklyn's hipster fortress, Castle Williamsburg, is one of many places around the country offering BYOB painting lessons, which are taught in a boozy reverie by 32-year-old RISD graduate Kevin Tarasuk. Tarasuk told the Daily News that a little booze goes a long way to unlocking an amateur painter's hidden trove of talents. Said the Miami-born painter,
Art is something people always think they're terrible at. They are much better than they think. They just need some guidance on how an art project goes - and a little bit of wine helps.
The phrase "a little bit of wine helps" would be a great slogan not just for the Painting Lounge's new $65, three-hour long painting bacchanals, but for pretty much anything...except, like, driving or pregnancy. Tarasuk's students agree, at least, that the alcohol helps them ignore the high probability that they're spending three hours smearing their canvases with acrylic at an level of competence that's only slightly higher than that of a finger-painting toddler. Said 38-year-old David Iga, who attends the classes with his fiancee and a 30-rack of beer, "I think [painting] gets easier the more you drink." Others such as 26-year-old Hikalu Takahashi, echoed Iga's sentiments, rhapsodizing, "You're more free with the brush; you're not thinking about it," while 25-year-old Jennifer Paulino explained that, once she's had enough of the Pinot Grigio she brings to the painting party, she starts to "trust" her painting more.
Though the Painting Lounge's Drink N' Draw nights weren't the first booze-painting gatherings in town, — drink-and-paint sloppily lessons were offered at the Flatiron Studio Paint Along way before Tarasuk brought his moonshine to town — Tarasuk's lessons feature two innovations: beer and live models. The result is a fun night of canvas-splattering. If only poor Philip Carey knew about this secret to artistic success, Of Human Bondage would have been a way shorter and more optimistic novel about a young man with a clubfoot who has a drunken romp through Paris, rather than a completely sober account of frustrated creative ambition. And if booze can make that book happy, just imagine how much fun it would be to sidle up to a canvas, paintbrush in one hand, booze in another, pallet somewhere far away from the booze so as not to confuse the two, and spend the night being drunkenly semi-productive.
Image via loannis Pantzi/Shutterstock.