Artists from around the region have a new hangout.
The Allied Arts Council of Fort Macleod is hosting monthly drop-in sessions at the Scout Hall.
Executive director Carmen Drapeau said there are a variety of reasons the Saturday morning drop-in sessions are important.
“The No. 1 thing is to be able to meet other artists,” Drapeau said Feb. 12 during the first session, which ran from 9 a.m. to 12 noon. “That’s very important because artists will inspire each other.”
There is no formal structure to the drop-in sessions, other than the invitation is open to all artists.
Artists are encouraged to bring a piece on which they are working, and use the three-hour block to get it done or at least make some progress.
“The social aspect of it is really important,” Drapeau said. “You get support from the other artists.”
The idea of a regular drop-in session was proposed before Christmas by Jan Walker, a Fort Macleod artist known for her marquetry.
On Feb. 12 Walker, Renilda Kemp and Heather Dodd joined Drapeau at the Scout Hall.
Walker said the drop-in sessions provide the chance for like-minded individuals to enjoy some fellowship, share ideas and techniques, and find some inspiration.
“It’s hard to get motivated some times,” Walker said of working in home studios. “As Heather said, when you’re at home there are always 12 things at the top of the list to be done before your art.”
Drapeau agreed, saying some artists will have several pieces on the go at once but have trouble finding the time or motivation to finish them.
Taking work from the home studio to the Scout Hall for interaction with other artists will provide both the time and the inspiration.
“They get feedback from each other,” Drapeau said.
The Scout Hall has excellent natural lighting for artists, Drapeau said, making it a perfect venue in the absence of an arts centre in Fort Macleod.
Drapeau was pleased that three other artists turned out for the first drop-in session, and is hopeful the numbers will grow at the next session at 9 a.m. Saturday, March 12.
The Allied Arts Council plans to host the sessions as long as artists are interested.
Drapeau admitted the council has an ulterior motive.
“We want to know who’s out there,” Drapeau said of artists in the region. “We know some people, but there are a lot of artists in this community.”