Starry Night Dreams: Unleashing my Inner Van Gogh

So, this post is about three years late, as I completed this painting activity in 2020. But I thought I’d share it anyway 😊

I was invited by a wonderful friend to join her for an evening of Sip and Paint at Ladder Art Space in Kew, Victoria. When I heard the words ‘wine’, ‘painting’ and ‘Van Gogh’ in one sentence, it was music to my ears. The allure of recreating an iconic piece, while enjoying a glass of Pinot Noir with great company, was an opportunity I couldn’t resist.

Painting is always a bittersweet experience for me. On one hand, I love it and find it really therapeutic. I can stay in one spot and paint for hours if I’m in the creative zone. On the other hand, it can also be a really stressful activity, as I have an unfortunate tendency to be a perfectionist.

So, when I found out we only had two hours to complete the painting, I knew there was going to be a self-inflicted mental battle ahead. But, thankfully, at least there was wine.

The First Time

Although I’ve attended many painting classes in the past (thanks to studying Fine Arts at university), this was my first official sip and paint class. I don’t know what I was expecting, but for some reason I didn’t think we would start with a blank canvas. (Weird to think that, I know.)

I had in my mind that it would be like paint-by-numbers with the linework already drawn on the canvas. My reason for thinking this was because two hours seemed like a very short timeframe to paint an entire canvas. (Once again, this probably just pertains to my perfectionism.)

What made this class enjoyable was the excellent teacher guiding us through the artistic journey. She skillfully walked us through each canvas stroke, breaking down the process into manageable steps. She also highlighted which elements to tackle first before adding layers of detail. There were many first-time painters in the class and they all recreated The Starry Night beautifully.

I managed to keep pace for the initial hour, but as expected, my relentless pursuit of perfection led me astray, causing me to fall behind. And, just maybe, the enjoyment of wine and socialising played a part too.

Twenty Minutes To Go

Have you ever been so engaged in a task that time seems to stretch infinitely? Then, out of nowhere, comes the reminder: “Twenty minutes to go!” As reality and panic set in, I realised I was really behind.

So, I hurriedly added in the village and the stars. Unfortunately, I got caught up working on the swirl in the middle of the canvas and I didn’t get to add in the white highlights that I wanted to. After spending ten precious minutes on the swirl, the class sadly came to an end.

And here it is, the ultimate outcome after a solid two hours of painting. (Well, semi-solid.) Surprisingly, it surpassed my expectations of what I thought I could achieve in that timeframe.

Overall, the evening was a lot of fun, and I wholeheartedly soaked in the chill and creative vibes of the class. And, if we’re talking about dynamic duos, wine and art is definitely somewhere at the top of the list.

Class May Be Over, But I’m Still Painting

So, I decided to spend a few hours finishing off the painting today. I was determined to add in the highlights, just like Van Gogh did. (For those who are into astrology, I have a Capricorn rising. 😂 ) I think I may have gone a bit overboard but at least I can rest now knowing the highlights are in!

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