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Tipsy painting on a Saturday night

Time to update you on my midlife adventures and I have a few to catch up with! This time I'll tell you about my solo outing to Vine and Canvas in Glasgow. In a recent blog I wrote about my trip to Skye with my sons, where we climbed the Old Man of Storr only to be met with heavy fog and rain, with no spectacular view that would merit the climb (I am NOT a hiker). The opportunity to paint the famous landmark seemed like fate when I saw it advertised so close after my visit there.

I took the train so I could enjoy my wine which would hopefully improve my artistic abilities. Of course, as with 99% of nights out in Glasgow, the reliable rain didn't disappoint as I huddled under my bruised and battered umbrella.

Arriving at the venue which was a little hard to find, I was greeted by Heather, the owner of Vine and Canvas and our art teacher for the evening. Joining the other participants at a long table, I was relieved not to be the only person there alone. In fact, as the evening progressed, we all chatted away between brush stokes...the wine helped. Interesting to discover that opposite me were an American couple working on the Outlander show, which is filmed partly at Wardpark studios, in "Hollywood-esque" Cumbernauld.

The studio itself was very interesting and colourful with plenty art on display. The business offers a huge range of different themes including music night events, glow in the dark artwork, life drawing, paint your pet parties and more. Perhaps the highlight though (ahem), was the karaoke night going full swing in the pub downstairs. Let's just say some participants were far more musical than others.

Our canvases had a basic sketch outlined for us to begin with, and we watched Heather paint effortlessly as we tried our best to recreate the effects of sunlight and the many different coloured tones. The image we were working from featured the Northern Lights, something on my bucket list (I visited Iceland where I was told seeing the phenomenon was almost guaranteed, but had no luck). Someone at our table decided to take a more abstract approach, and it soon became apparent that the sky was transforming into eyes. Her painting became a representation of the giant, a legend which relates to the Old Man of Storr. We were discouraged from using black, and to try create the varying contrasts by mixing different colours. After a few wines though, there was some contraband black paint being sneakily shared around the table.

By the end of the evening I was pleased with my result, and it was interesting to see the variations between all the paintings, even though we were all painting the same thing. My canvas survived the rainy journey home as I managed to wangle a plastic bag from Heather, and I'm pleased that my patriotic, bagpipe playing son, has the canvas in his room; a reminder of that one and only time he convinced his mum to climb a mountain (not sure if it is technically called a mountain, but I'm claiming it is).

Another successful, out my comfort zone experience and I'd go back to Vine and Canvas. It's not somewhere you have to be very talented at art, there is no criticism, and Heather was very encouraging and helpful. Take a look at the classes on offer here:

What will I be up to next? Watch this space...

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