Mama, just think for a moment about about the creative endeavours you would like to try or even re-visit. Is a lack of time holding you back? Priti, from Paint It Priti, will show you that painting is possible even with little ones around. Perhaps our conversation about painting will spark some creativity within you today.

Website: http://www.paintitpriti.com
Facebook: Paint It Priti
Instagram: @paint_it_priti
Email: paintitpriti@gmail.com

Carol: Hi mamas and welcome. I’m Carol Webb, the founder and your host of Just Breathe Mama Coach. I’m a coach for moms and I help them to navigate the overwhelm and create a more manageable life, one that’s filled with joy. I am doing an interview series with creatives in the hopes that you find something that lights YOU up. I’m really excited to introduce our next guest. It’s Priti of Paint it Pretty paint parties. She’s an artist and a teacher and she absolutely loves what she does and takes joy in every event that she’s called out for. The experiences that she has been able to be a part of during this journey have meant so much to her and opened up a new perspective of the world and people around her.

Carol: Teaching and giving people the encouragement to believe they can accomplish something they thought they couldn’t, has brought her such a feeling of joy. Priti has had the opportunity to work with adults, seniors, teenagers, and children. She has taught special needs, who came with their nurses, people who cannot hear and have to read her lips or have the instruction signed to them. Teens in the care of children’s aid and the most recent was a blind man. His words to her of the experience melted her heart. All these wonderful experiences and positive feedback from people has driven her to do the best in every party that she has held. And Priti is here today, happier than ever doing what she loves and being able to share the joy of it with the people around her. Ah, that’s fantastic. Welcome!

Priti: Hi! Thank you for having me.

Carol: How did you become an artist? How did this whole thing come about?

Priti: So it’s funny. My kids were younger, my youngest was about 9 0r 10 and I wanted a balance. I was like, “How can I find this balance where there’s doctor’s appointments and there’s times when my kids are sick, where I can have the control of having a job that I like and still being able to be there for my kids?” And so, you know, it’s funny because there’s a lot of these small direct marketing businesses where you go and do small parties like Arbonne and Scentsy and all those kinds of different things. I was doing steeped tea and I’m like, “Nobody wants to come to my tea party.” *laughs*

Priti: Oh my goodness! “What kind of party can I do where somebody would want to come to it?” And then I thought, “Well, if I was to think outside the box, what if I tried something like a paint party?” Just some brainstorming and all of a sudden the ideas just started flowing and I’m like, “You know what? I can come and set up. These are the things I do on my own at home anyways, right? So what if I was to try to teach it?”

Priti: So instead of doing, you know, big restaurants and big venues, why don’t I come into your home and why don’t I let you get some of your friends together. And I’ll come with a small set of supplies and we’ll make it a wine and paint night! You can have wine or you can have whatever you want and I will show you in the comfort of your own home, how to go through a painting from start to finish within one evening.

Priti: And you know what, after the first one, I only had enough easels for six and brushes for six. I started very, very small. It was just one night with a group of friends and from then, that was five years ago, and it just snowballed and snowballed and snowballed into something huge. It just went from six people to eventually, after five years, I’m doing groups of, in person, my biggest was 55 and virtually I think over 350. So I mean, it all just came to play slowly, but it all started with this small little idea of, “Hey, you know what? My steeped tea party didn’t work, no one wants tea. *laughs* What’s something different that they’d want to try with their friends?”

Carol: That’s fantastic. I love that. How did you become an artist before you opened your business?

Priti: So the background that I had, I was at graphic designer. I also held my real estate license for over 10 years because I got that when I was on mat leave with my son. I thought to myself, “how can I find something that I can use my artistic background in?” So I was doing graphic designing, working in a print shop too, that was the background, but I grew up loving art.

Priti: I was winning colouring contests since I was five years old. So many at McDonald’s that they put my picture in the paper and I got a free pizza or a free little dinner from them when they were doing that stuff. So it all started from me just coloring and doodling. And I always joke that I was never allowed out when I was young because of cultural background so I would sit there and just draw and draw and draw. So that’s where it all started from. Then my love for painting kind of grew. It wasn’t until my kids got older, then I’m like, “You know what? I need to start doing something for myself.” That’s when I started to paint a little bit and then all of a sudden it just evolved into a business.

Carol: Fantastic. It’s so nice when you can combine what you love with what you do for work. The paintings behind you are so beautiful by the way. I love them, they’re so bright.

Priti: This is the lesson I was just doing last night. *gestures to painting* So, you know, I’m down here and this is the way I would set it up. I have whatever painting displayed and then I’ll stand here or sit here and I’ll show you how to walk through it step by step and it’s a nice evening.

Photo by Anna Kolosyuk 

Carol: Yeah, I love that. So what type of paint parties do you offer then? You obviously (previously) offered in person, but that’s probably not happening right now, right? It’s more virtual?

Priti: Yeah, I had to put that on hold for a little bit until it opens up. I used to come out to homes, restaurants, churches, and fundraising events. I would go to wherever they were having their event. Anywhere you can name, I would be there, a park, anywhere.

Priti: Right now we’ve converted it all to virtual so we’re still doing the same thing it’s just that people are in their homes. Birthday parties, for instance, bachelorette parties, girls nights, family events, fundraisers. And even then, it’s the same thing, everyone logs on from home and we all go through the steps together. If it’s a birthday, they do porch drop offs of cupcakes and things like that so everyone sings together and has their cupcake together and paints together. We’ve found ways to evolve for now, to still make it something that’s fun. Where people can get together and just kind of forget about everything else that’s going on and just enjoy an evening with friends or family and let go of everything and just have a good evening.

Carol: Yeah, that sounds like so much fun. I believe I also saw on Instagram, I think it was Instagram, that you were doing drawing classes or illustration classes as well. Is that something new?

Priti: It is actually. So I have some kids who were interested in drawing. They start with one painting and after 20, it’s like, we need something new to do. *laughs* It’s a learning curve for myself too because I might specialize in one thing and not be as good at something else. So even me, I’m drawing with the kids and I’m like, “Oh my gosh, guys, I surprised myself too.” So we started portrait drawing classes.

Priti: And I’m in the works of doing some kind of fashion design type classes where I’m teaching how to do the actual figure and how to do different outfits on it and stuff. I’m slowly, slowly introducing different parts instead of just painting. So the portrait drawing was one, hopefully the fashion design one is going to be another and more advanced portrait drawing for the kids and the adults who finished the first session. They want to keep going and learning more, like parts of the body, how to do a whole body, you know? We start with something small and eventually, we just keep adding things to it. So that’s how I’ve been doing things and it’s worked out quite well.

Carol: It sounds like things are always evolving. That’s great!

Priti: Oh yeah! We learn as we go, same with me. I’ll do one or two portraits and then one day I’ll do one and I’m like, “Guys, if I flip back to the one I did the first time and now we’re doing this one, look at the difference in even just what I’ve done.” So that just shows it doesn’t matter who you are or what level you’re at, if you keep going towards a certain goal, you’ll get there. And you’ll probably even exceed that goal and you’ll surprise yourself.

Carol: Oh I like that! Do your clients need much in the way of art supplies? Or even, well, not experience because you said they could start at with no experience.

Priti: No, no experience needed. Most people, 95% have not even picked up a brush and they’re like, “Oh, I do stick people.” *laughs* They don’t need much. If it’s the drawing class, start with a sketchbook and a set of pencils. Even from the Dollar Store, just the little set with different pencils and a sketchbook. I use the same thing sometimes so I’m like, “Look, I’m using the same stuff as you.” So you can choose to go to an art store and spend more or you can just grab that. Even if you only have one pencil at home, I can show you a way to use your pencil so you can get the different shadings and different depths and stuff like that. Even with one pencil.

Priti: Say for painting, a variety of brushes. I’ve learned myself doing things virtually that, a variety of brushes works. It doesn’t matter what brush, it just matters how you use it, which is the kind of stuff I teach you.

Priti: Canvas? Hey, you don’t need canvas. I’ve had people paint on pizza boxes, wood, paint on paper. We’ve done all kinds of things now that we’ve done it online. And you know what? You can get canvas paper or canvas if you choose, but it’s not necessary and you can still do the same thing. I have this exact same picture *shows a canvas painting* in my sketchbook that I did the other day because I forgot to get a canvas. So this is a sketchbook and this is acrylic paints. *shows her sketchbook with the same painting in it* So if you don’t have much, you don’t need much.

Carol: You can get acrylic paints at the Dollar Store as well. I even saw canvases because my son and I are interested in starting painting.

Priti: Yeah and you can get cheaper art paints which are okay, they’re a bit thinner. You know what? I’ve had kids use Crayolas, washables, we make it work. It’s still paint, right? That’s the beauty of this.

Carol: That’s great! That sounds good. I’ve never heard of using pizza boxes before, but why not? The back of them works. *laughs*

Priti: When people couldn’t get out they were using whatever they had at home, cardboard boxes, paper, whatever.

Carol: Awesome. Do you have different themes to choose from? I see you have different paintings in the back there. Do you have specific ones for people to choose from when they are booking a party?

Priti: I do. I have a website at paintitpriti.com and there’s a gallery on there. So there’s ones for kids, ones that say kids and adults, ones that say holiday themes, fall themes but of course any are meant for anyone. If you’re a kid and you want to do ‘The Girl on the Swing’, that’s up there on the tire swing. *motions to canvas painting of girl on tire swing* Initially it was meant for an adults party but kids love it so I’ve been doing that one so much with kids.

Priti: There’s a gallery on there and you pick whatever you like and you could change colors as we paint. It’s it’s really flexible. If there’s something that you wanted to paint and I didn’t have it. They’ll be like, “Oh, I really want certain themes.” That’s how things like my ‘Flamingo’ and my ‘Llama’ and my “Gnome’ came about because they were suggestions. And I’m like, “Oh, all right, let’s do something fun!” *laughs* You can put whatever you want on your sign. *points to sign on gnome painting* Again, I kind of just go with whatever people want to do. Hey, let’s change it up! Let’s do this! So that’s what makes it fun, right?

Photo by Tim Arterbury 

Carol: I love that. Its the go with the flow kind of attitude. I like it. So what’s one of the top questions that you get asked by clients? Do you have one?

Priti: A lot of times, it’s a lot of kids that I paint with, adults the same, they’ll ask me, “How are you so good at this? How do you do this? How do you make it look so easy?” Honestly, it’s just practice. It’s just practice. What do I do on my free time? I love to paint. It’s just something I do. I find it relaxing, I find it very therapeutic. You forget about things, you put on your music and you just paint.

Priti: The kids and the adults have noticed from the first time they paint with me to maybe the fifth time or even the third time, I’m like, “Do you notice how the first time you were afraid to touch the canvas? And now you’re right in there changing colors and changing ideas and adding little things of your own.” This is where you’ll notice that the more you do it, the more your confidence grows and it gets easier and you get faster and anyone can do it. It’s not just me. It’s just because I put a lot of time into it. So it’s the same for everyone else. They can pick up the speed, they can pick up the skill. It’s just a little practice, just like everything else.

Carol: Oh, I love that because I am not a painter. Well, I shouldn’t say that, I should say I’m not a painter YET. But I’d like to get into it because it’s just such a beautiful creative outlet and a lot of creativity is very therapeutic. It would be so nice to just lose yourself, I think, in the painting as you’re doing it.

Priti: Yeah, that’s exactly what it is! And I tell them, whether you worry or you don’t worry, the results are going to be the same. So just let go and just go with it. I can already tell you ahead of time, if something goes wrong, how to fix it, if you’re not sure of something, I explain. Even in the beginning, before we start, I usually paint over canvases. There are ways to cover things up and put new things on it. In life, everyone’s always trying to be perfect. In art, it’s the imperfections that are going to make it look natural and beautiful and unique. Everything else we’re trying to do so perfect. This, that’s the beauty of this. It’s the differences that make it so much better.

Carol: I love that. Enjoy the process. Enjoy the journey. I love that. The perfection of imperfections.

Priti: Exactly. Don’t line up this mountain with this mountain! If you’re outside in nature, does anything match? Does one tree match another tree? Does one branch match another? No, it’s all different.

Carol: You’re right. I love that. All right, I’ll just wrap up our chat with this final question. So what are the biggest benefits that moms will receive from having a paint party with you?

Priti: So again, of course we covered some of them. It’s therapeutic, it’s a chance to let go and just forget about all the stuff that’s going on during your day. If you’re doing it with a group of moms, for instance, you guys can chat at the same time, just about things, you get to have mom time. Also another benefit is if have young ones and you need your kids with you. The beauty of this also is that you can do it while your kids are napping.

Priti: Once things open up, whether virtually or at homes, I’ve had moms nursing as they’re painting at the same time. So we’ve had groups where there’s a couple of little babies. They come down, we’re passing them around and they’re painting at the same time. So whether you choose to do it on your own for your ‘me’ time with other moms or you choose to have your kids there or need to have your kids there, sometimes they’re in the basement playing sometimes, you have them right there with you, but the beauty is you can still enjoy this process and still have your kids there. If you need to watch over them, it’s just knowing they’re taken care of and you’re still able to do something that you enjoy.

Carol: Yeah that’s so important.

Priti: That’s a good benefit and all the other things that we discussed. Just the fact that it’s a nice break from reality.

Carol: Yeah I think it’s necessary, these days especially, to have a little break from reality. Well, this has been amazing! This has been so fabulous. Thank you so much for coming on today. I’m going to post all the links below and for everyone watching the website is paintitpriti.com. You can email her at paintitpriti@gmail.com, find out more information on her Facebook page, Paint It Priti, and follow her on Instagram @paint_it_priti as well, but I’ll post all the links so you have those below. I want to thank you so much again for joining us. That was a lot of fun! I’ll definitely see you at a paint party in the future.

Priti: You’re welcome! Yes hopefully because you get hooked. You start and you’re off like, “Oh, you know what? I like this more than I thought I would.”

Carol: Yeah, I can’t wait. My son he’s very into art and he was going to 4Cats and then everything obviously had shut down. He loves painting, he loves drawing, he loves clay. And I said, “I really want to try painting.” It’s something that I’ve wanted to try. But you’re a little hesitant and you would like to follow along with somebody. So I think that’s what I’m going to have to do.

Priti: And even the kids. I know it builds confidence in the moms and the adults, but same with the kids. It builds this confidence in them where they’re like, “Oh, I looked at the picture and I didn’t think I could do it” and then they’re like, “Oh my gosh, look what I did!” So I love that. I even have open classes for kids on Tuesdays where, if they want to do two sessions, they can, if they decide to take a break, they can. It’s sort of a drop in thing so you don’t have to have an event, they can just drop in and just try it out.

Carol: Oh, that’s great to know too! Well, thank you so much again.

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