Monday April 21st 2014

Out Going

Brushes and brews: Paint Nite in Portland

By: Shannon Bryan

Drinking makes us wittier and better looking. As least we like to think so when we’re halfway through a carafe of the house red.

It’s possible it’s simply a liquor-induced figment. But still, somehow, the quiet turn into chatterboxes. The rigid take over the dance floor – or the gap between dining tables that they suddenly think is a dance floor.

And the unartistic? They become master painters.

The people behind Paint Nite understand. They’ve been helping lackluster brush-wielders create works of art for a while in bigger cities to Portland’s south. But the event has recently made its way here, bringing painting to local pubs like Brian Boru, Bull Feeney’s and Flask Lounge.

Attendees arrive to find easels and blank canvases where beers and sweet potato fries usually rest. Paint, aprons, and brushes are supplied. You spring for the drinks. And then? Art ensues.

Last week at Bull Feeney’s, fifteen hopeful artisans gathered in the downstairs dining room. The instructor, a new-to-Portland painter named Callie Hastings, showed us what we’d be painting: a well-respected local icon known as the Portland Observatory (or, sometimes, “that thing that looks like a lighthouse.”)

And then it happened. We painted. Even those of us who are forced trace stick figures for lack of artistic ability.

Paint Nite happens a few times a week at various watering holes around Portland – Flask Lounge, Bull Feeney’s – and costs $45 a person.
FMI on Paint Nite: Paint Nite (you can also see what you’ll be painting) or on Facebook

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