There were 19 budding artists packed into the northside sports bar Feliz on Thursday afternoon, bent over the L-shaped bar and nearby tables, all trying to capture the essence of the beguiling little Belize tree frog on canvas. Rose was among them.
A local artist-gallery owner, Melody Sanchez-Wolfe, organizes these periodic art gatherings at a few bars and restaurants around San Pedro.
Basically, she shows up with paints, canvases, brushes and a finished picture; lays out the basics for her 20 students; then turns them loose on the blank canvases. Melody zips around the room offering suggestions here, tips there and sometimes she’ll jump in and rescue an inflated frog’s toes, bring them back down to scale, or something.
Rebecca from San Pedro Scoop had a nice story on Melody and the paint parties last December. You can read it here!
Some of the participants went off-canvas and turned their tree frogs into spotted tree frogs or purple frogs or modified the background, much to the delight of everyone, especially Melody.
It is all island laid-back and social — appropriate for an event called “Melody’s Splash and Paint Party,” in a beach bar.
But, really more painting than drinking.
I made this observation to Mike, owner of Feliz with his wife, Wendy. He grinned and in a stage voice augmented by his South African accent, said “No, not much drinking. But that would only be a problem if this were a bar!”
Got it. I ordered a beer while I waited.
He must enjoy it though. Feliz hosts Melody’s painting party every other Thursday.
Art is very democratic, like journalism: There are no barriers to participation.
That’s what makes melody’s parties so much fun. You bring your own game to the event and who is to say that your cubist expressionism version of a tree frog is any better or less than an identical knockoff of Melody’s own painting?
For a couple of hours on a Thursday afternoon, 19 people bent over canvases were budding Van Goghs in Paradise, with ears intact and open for a bit of gossip and social chatter while their hands and hearts made lovely art.