Put down that phone and pick up a paintbrush! Explore your artistic side while enjoying an evening of creativity and camaraderie during “Primrose Palette” nights in June. Held the first four Saturdays in June 2, 9, 16 & 23 from 7-9 PM, these two-hour sessions capitalize on the popular painting party trend while celebrating the rustic and pastoral beauty of Primrose Farm.
“Primrose Palette” nights are held on the upper level of the Main Barn, whose original portion dates back to 1860.
“We open up the sliding doors so we can watch the sunset, just to add a bit more atmosphere,” said Emily Lambillotte, Farm Programs Supervisor. “We get a lot of our inspiration from the many colors and sights you can see out here on the Farm.”
Adding to the atmosphere on “Primrose Palette” nights is the party setting. Friends, families, co-workers, couples can come together to relax and socialize. Participants over the age of 21 are invited to BYOB wine or enjoy non-alcoholic beverages and a variety of delicious snacks provided by the Primrose Farm staff.
But will a glass of Pinot turn you into the next Picasso? Probably not. But Lambillotte and her staff of experienced artists are there to help both novice and experienced painters produce a finished work of art worthy of hanging on a wall at home, if not the Art Institute. And unlike school art classes where there is a pressure to perform, “Primrose Palette” evenings are all about the fun and enjoying a new experience.
“There’s no art prerequisite to join the class,” said Lambillotte. “What is really cool is that everybody who comes to the class has different backgrounds and different styles. We are very accommodating to people’s personal creativity.”
Prior to each class, Lambillotte or another instructor will create an example canvas to serve as the evening’s inspiration. Basic instructions about mixing colors, brush strokes and other techniques are demonstrated on a working canvas, and Lambillotte and her staff provide step-by-step hands-on guidance throughout the class.
“It’s really fun to see everyone’s paintings come together at the end of a class and see how every single painting is completely different from one another,” said Lambillotte. “It’s a lot of fun.”
Canvases are typically 16×20”, large enough to easily work with using acrylic paints and complete within the 2-hour time frame.
“We also like to incorporate different mediums to paint with,” said Lambillotte. “We’ll use Q-Tips to add details or palette knives for texture. We try different techniques, not just painting a single color on a blank background and adding a few shapes here and there.”
With an educational background in photojournalism and a lifetime spent as a hobby artist, Lambillotte brings a wealth of technical expertise as well as an artist’s eye to each session. “Art is a big passion of mine and something I always like to incorporate into Primrose Farm programming,” she said.
Popular all over the world – from Australia to Alaska – painting parties similar to “Primrose Palette” attract experience seekers: people who want to acquire memories rather than material possessions. The act of creating a painting is often more important than the painting itself.
At just $25 per session for residents ($38 for nonresidents), “Primrose Palette” evenings are an affordable night out for those looking for something a little bit different to do on a Saturday night. And for people who are familiar with painting party classes and events offered at local storefront studios, the allure of coming to “Primrose Palette” nights at Primrose Farm is the location itself.
“You’re out at the Farm in a beautiful, unique setting. It’s kind of an inspirational spot to be in,” said Lambillotte. “And because it’s so beautiful, it really sparks creativity. Being that close to nature gets you in touch with senses you might not necessarily tap into in a studio setting.”
Class size is limited so advance registration is required. For more information about “Primrose Palette” nights, contact Emily Lambillotte at 630-513-4382.