BY ALEXANDER MARGAVIO
Sheridan’s Trafalgar Campus had its second monthly paint night on Oct. 16, hosted by Jennifer Oberhammer. The Toronto-based artist guided participating students through painting a landscape on the Marquee stage.
The whole place was quiet as Oberhammer helped everyone paint a moonlit night sky with a tree sporting red and orange leaves. She was very supportive toward the painters, often coming down from the stage to walk around and see how everyone was doing.
The main draw of the event was that anyone and everyone can participate. So, whether you’re a seasoned art student looking for some more practice, or a newbie to the paint brush, the event is open to all.
“This is my first time. I’m not usually a painter but I’m happy how it’s turning out. I like how it’s beginner-friendly. It’s also really social and good for destressing,” said Sarah Orchard, a Sheridan student, as she went for another stroke of orange on her canvas.
The general atmosphere of the event is meant to feel inclusive and non-competitive. Unlike some other SSU events held at the Marquee, there aren’t any prizes or winners to be announced at the end of the night— just students painting to their hearts content, who can then take home what they’ve created.
“I find painting therapeutic, even if you’re not good at it. I like how everyone with different artistic abilities comes here,” said Latifah Abdallah, whose piece was receiving compliments from the student sitting next to her.
Many of the students took it upon themselves to add their own details to the landscape, some even making entirely new paintings that had very little resemblance to the example Oberhammer was painting on stage. “I like having an excuse to paint because I haven’t done it in a while. I like being in a relaxed environment that’s non-judgmental,” said Vanessa Scriver, who had decided on painting a cartoon face on her moon and opted for a snowy mountain background rather than a night sky.
Other interesting deviations included a piece done by student Carson Flemons, who had painted the sun setting over the horizon. Josh Michalski had painted a desert-like landscape with a large yellow sun, and Ariana Tokhi’s piece was glowing with Halloween spirit as she painted a sinister looking moon with lifeless trees and a dead grey sky.
“I think what it is when we’re children we think we can be anything, writers, dancers, artists, etcetera. As we get older we tend to stop doing creative things as much because we feel we’re not good enough. Too many people worry about what others think. These painting nights are great because they allow everyone to just come out and have fun,” said Oberhammer at the end of the night as everyone cleared out of the Marquee, most of them smiling as they held their freshly painted canvases.
Paint night happens once a month at the Trafalgar Campus and the Brampton Campus. Check out the SSU site for more details.