On an ordinary day, 2 Witches Winery and Brewing Company is a place for friends to gather and have a few drinks. Once a month, though, patrons have a chance to express their artistic side.
Brandon Lewis is an art teacher at George Washington High School and the creator and owner of Art-A-Palooza — a business that provides paint nights and other art events for members of the community.
Lewis says the business idea was born out a conversation between himself, his wife, and a few friends.
“I started Art-A-Palooza with my wife in February 2016 after several friends asked me why I wasn’t doing paint nights,” Lewis says. “We decided to give it a try, and while sitting at 2 Witches one night, we scheduled our first paint night there.”
Since then, Lewis has put on at least one paint night each month at 2 Witches. He also does special events such as bachelorette parties, fundraisers, and children’s camps.
Lewis says one of the most rewarding parts of his job is providing a space for people to express their creativity together.
“It’s wonderful to be able to bring people together in the community to produce artwork in a relaxed environment,” Lewis says. “Meeting so many wonderful people and watching them enjoy painting, even the ones who say they can’t paint, has also been rewarding.”
The paint nights are $40 per person, and by the end of the evening, each painter will have a completed work to take home with them. Most pieces created by those who attend Art-A-Palooza are canvas-based paintings, but there are other events such as the “Beer, Boards, and Wines” event in June where participants were able to create their own wooden board sign instead.
As a teacher, Lewis says he loves seeing his students critically think-through situations to create works of art. This applies to his business as well.
“There aren’t always right or wrong answers, but the most rewarding part is watching them build something that they have come up with,” Lewis says.
He has a passion for the arts and hopes to use his business to grow Danville’s art scene and develop a passion for art in others as well.
In the next year, Lewis hopes to introduce new classes using a variety of mediums, expanding beyond the wine and canvas. He says he wants to give people the opportunity to try new techniques and approach art from a “no-stress perspective.”
“We plan to expand Art-A-Palooza to other locations here in Danville, and we’re always looking for new and exciting projects,” Lewis says. “Thinking bigger, I’ve always wanted to own my own art gallery in Danville to help bring the arts to the community. Hopefully we are on our way.”