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For many of us, city living is the ultimate paradox – we’re surrounded by people but we feel disconnected and out of touch with our local community. While spending time in local shops, bars and galleries is a good way to get better acquainted with your neighbourhood, the experience can still feel a little impersonal, especially if you don’t have a lot of friends in the area. That’s why we love the emerging paint and sip trend which is taking off in small local venues across Melbourne. Increasingly, independent bars, pubs, cafes and shops are activating their venues for paint and sip classes in Melbourne, giving locals the chance to get up close and personal in a behind the scenes experience that goes deeper than just stopping by for a drink.
Ideal for people who are new to the area and looking to make some like-minded friends or long-time residents who want a deeper sense of connection to their local community, these paint and sip classes are connecting creative across the city. Now maybe you're wondering what exactly is paint and sip? Paint and sip classes are creative events that mix art and alcohol, allowing attendees to connect through creativity while enjoying a drink or two. The classes turn learning into a social event, creating a relaxed atmosphere in which to experiment with new skills and make new friends in the process. If you’re keen to connect more authentically with your community, do some more socialising in your suburb, or feel like an insider at your favourite venue, look no further than these creative paint and sip classes in Melbourne.
Cost: $65 if you’re flying solo or $60 if you book with a friend
Location: The Bookshop at Everyday Coffee
If you live near the University of Melbourne but you’re looking for something a little different from the usual uni hangouts, this is the class for you. Hosted in the fresh, trendy event space of Melbourne’s newest Everyday Coffee location, this laid-back class is more about relaxing, enjoying yourself and awakening your creativity rather than perfecting your painting technique. Over the course of a few hours, you’ll be able to enjoy a local venue, make new friends, drink wine and paint all at the same time.
In each session, the teacher will bring a modern masterpiece for students to use as inspiration for their own work. The aim isn’t to reproduce the original, but rather to let your creative juices (and your drinks) flow freely. You’ll learn some sketching skills, get a simple tutorial on using acrylics, talk about modern art and of course enjoy some wine while you work (or tea if you’d prefer). Plus, in true university style, you’re welcome to BYO extra drinks if you want to keep the good times rolling.
Location: Carlton Brewhouse in Abbotsford
Who said that art classes for adults can’t be hosted in a pub? This class lets you explore behind the infamous red brick walls of the Carlton & United Brewery, while also learning to create your own masterpiece. Carlton Brewhouse is Australia’s largest brewery and home to some of the country’s most iconically Australian beers including Carlton Draught and Victoria Bitter.
Spend two hours relaxing and unwinding with beers, beats, and brushes as an expert artist gives you step by step instructions to paint your own unique piece. You’ll learn some tricks of the trade and tap into your creativity while also sampling what’s on tap at the Carlton. The best bit is after the class is over you can stay and grab another drink (or two) with your classmates and debrief, swap tips and admire each other’s artworks.
What better way to immerse yourself in your local art scene than to take a class at an active art gallery and exhibition space. In this paint your pet class you’ll not only meet like-minded art-lovers, but you’re also guaranteed to be rubbing shoulders with fellow animal lovers. Send a picture of your pet beforehand and when you arrive, it will be pre-sketched on a large stretched canvas, so all you have to do is have fun with some paints and get busy immortalising your pet. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own nibbles and drinks and the venue supplies all painting supplies, glassware and bottle openers. Chances are you could walk away with not only a stunning homage to your furry friend but also a new dog walking companion or cat sitting candidate from your local neighbourhood. This class is also family-friendly and is appropriate for ages eight and over, so why not bring the kids too.
Location: StoryVille, Lonsdale Street
Reconnect with your inner child and go behind the scenes at a themed cocktail bar and nightclub with this magical paint and sip class in Melbourne’s CBD. If you live or work in the city, it’s easy to see it as a concrete jungle made up of identical office buildings and impersonal skyscrapers. This behind the scenes experience will help you remember why you fell in love with Melbourne’s unique nightlife in the first place. StoryVille is a fairytale-themed venue, styled around the magical childhood fables that once enraptured us all. The StoryVille team have designed a unique paint and sip experience designed to spark childhood memories and relive the magic of those whimsical years. Kick things off with a mind-blowing cocktail, then allow artist Liam Waldie to take you on a creative journey. Liam’s illustrations and artworks have featured on everything from children’s books to beer bottles and you’ll be amazed how his simple guidance will allow you to create an artwork using the flow of contours and colour.