FREDERICK — The simple idea of sharing good company, a bottle of wine and a painting lesson created a new twist on date night and a burgeoning industry within the last dozen years.
But now a Frederick resident has a novel approach to shake up the ‘paint and sip’ formula: bring the studio to the customer.
And this is where the Cruisin’ Canvas meets the road.
Tami Showers, the owner and artist of the Cruisin’ Canvas, said there was a need for something unique in this cottage industry.
“It’s fun; it creates fellowship,” Showers said. “It gives people an opportunity to explore a talent they didn’t really know they had — whether they consider it a talent or not.”
The Cruisin’ Canvas customers host the paint parties at their home or offices where they can give the party a personal touch. Showers brings a painting selected from her gallery on her website thecruisincanvas.com, and then she teaches the group the techniques necessary to make their own reproductions.
“Basically I bring the studio to you. There are a lot of those ‘paint and sip’ studios that are popping up all over northern Colorado. I was an artertainer for one of those for a while up in Loveland,” Showers said.“With the Crusin’ Canvas, I bring all of the tables, all of the canvas, all of the brushes, easels, aprons — I bring that to your facility. I specialize in a few different areas. Then I teach a class of up to twenty people to paint the same painting they would pick from the website.”
Showers will also let customers select customized paintings, such as pet portraits.
“But for the most part, people are choosing a painting from my website, and I go and teach them how to paint,” Showers said. “I’ve been doing this for two years, but I just quit my other job and I’ve been doing this full time since Aug. 2.”
She believes there is an artist in everybody, whether they know it or not.
“With step-by-step directions walking them through it, everybody’s painting comes out looking similar, but different at the same time,” Showers said.
The comparison between the different perspectives in the group is part of the fun of the party, Showers said.
The customers have been diverse, Showers said, including church groups, seniors at independent living facilities, and a women’s club meeting at a brewery.
“I just did a child’s birthday party two weeks ago,” Showers said. “Really, I just like to bring a spirit of fellowship around these people while they enjoy the company of their peers in more of a relaxed environment that’s familiar to them.”
Her business model also avoids one potential hazard surrounding the brick-and-mortar approach: the customer’s temptation to blend “paint and sip” into “sip and drive.”
“I meet with the customers so they don’t have to trudge out and meet at a wine and paint shop, and then have a few drinks and drive home, or whatever it might be,” Showers said.
Find more information about Cruisin’ Canvas at www.thecruisincanvas.com or call 970-481-8183.
Contact Ben Wiebesiek at 303-659-2522, ext. 205, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.