Imagine paint in every colour of the rainbow; sponging, spraying, flicking, squirting, blending, dotting. Getting it on your hands and face, the floor, walls and chairs and of course not forgetting a canvas without having to clean up afterwards?
Artjamming, launched in Cape Town at the end of July 2007 by local fashion and textile importers and distributors, Ralph Israel and his daughter Leora, may be exactly what you're looking for.
Already a hugely successful worldwide trend, Artjamming allows you to create your very own unique full colour piece of art in a relaxed environment. This amazing concept was discovered on one of Leora’s trips to the Far East and after extensive research she realised the need for this kind of activity, amusement and distraction from everyday stress. The Israel’s decided to bring Artjamming to Cape Town first and have also acquired the sole rights for South Africa.
Thus I decided to see what all the fuss was about and spent an afternoon attempting to unleash the artist within me.
Situated at the trendy Wembley Square Lifestyle Shopping Centre in Gardens the studios are surrounded by big windows, allowing in lots of natural light, which I hear helps bring out your creative side.
Memories of art class in primary school came flooding back as we sat down for our introduction to paint brushes, colour mixing and painting techniques. This is the first thing you will need to know before setting out on your colourful journey.
I brought my five-year-old niece, Ella, along as she is a self-acclaimed painter. As soon as she was told to let rip with as many colours, stencils and paint brushes as she wanted to without having her mom moan at her about the mess, her eyes lit up behind her confused smile. She felt like every other child feels when they come to Artjamming™ and that’s heaven.
The studio walls, floors and chairs are all splattered with luminous colours, making art of a kaleidoscope of squiggles, lines and dots all in the name of creativity.
After the intro we were free to be.
Deciding what to paint is nerve-racking especially for someone who doesn’t know how, but a qualified artist is on hand to provide constant guidance every step of the way. A menu of 12 different size canvasses, easels, non-toxic acrylic paints, brushes and tools are on tap.
I chose to work with shades of green and blue, white, copper, yellow, red and silver. Not sure quite how to begin, I dotted my canvas with a mixture of different shades of green and white. Perhaps it was Miley Cyrus playing through the speakers that appealed to my kindred spirit, or noticing the freedom Ella had as she filled her canvas with colours of all shapes and sizes not caring too much that her pink elephant looked more like a smudge, but just like that my canvas took shape.
Soon Ella was up to her arms in pink, blue and grey paint. If only her mom could see her now. Thankfully the paint washes off easily with a bit of water. After two hours we were done. Our masterpieces bagged for us to take home and frame.
Artjamming is paintertainment and is best experienced as a group; whether it's with friends, family, young children, co-workers or clients. They also hosts birthday parties, team building parties, corporate events, school holiday programmes, tuition, exhibitions and more.
An upcoming event not to be missed is Write on Africa, in association with Artjamming and Word of Art. They will be offering an opportunity to invest in rare works of art by some of the biggest names in Urban Art (often considered a glorified term for ‘graffiti’) and raise money to “change the face” of underprivileged communities.
Write on Africa takes place on Saturday, 4 April (the first day of the school holidays) and will represent original works of six top local artists. Artists will spray and paint on canvases and work with different mediums to create a variety of works of art for auction.
The event will be open to the public and take place between 12h00 – 19h00, at the Artjamming studio in Gardens. The money raised will be donated to the Write On Africa Mural Fund, an initiative created by Word Of Art, a management agency for emerging creatives in various art disciplines.