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Frequently Asked Questions

What is Van Gogh and Merlot?

Van Gogh and Merlot is people learning to paint in a social environment where they can enjoy a drink. The concept is designed to teach the "every-person" regardless of experience how to paint. Classes are lead by an instructor taking you through a step-by-step process going from blank canvas to a completed painting in one class. back to the top

What is the average duration of class?

Each class can range from 2-3hrs. This all depends on general flow of the class, difficulty of the reference picture, and how many breaks we take. Rest assured that during this time frame you will have sufficient time to complete your painting. back to the top

How is subject matter chosen?

For the open-sessions, the subject matter is typically picked out by Van Gogh and Merlot. This is usually seasonal in nature or by request. For the most part, 10-15 reference pictures are chosen. These are further narrowed down to only one and are voted on by a handful of lucky judges. In the private party setting, the person putting the party together or the host gets to pick out the picture. Van Gogh and Merlot will ultimately approve of the reference picture while taking into consideration the needs and wants of the class. back to the top

What subject matter will we be painting?

There are 3 basic styles or methods to choose from and varies depending on age, group attending, and location. The first is "Replicating Paintings." This is our interpretation of a painting we find worthy of painting. These can be famous in nature or something local. We can also paint from any picture or photograph with this method. Examples of these would be replicating "Starry Night" or "The Mona Lisa."

The second is "In the Moment." For this participants will paint from a live scene. We meet at a predetermined location and paint that scene. Examples of this include painting a city scene or landscape live and in the moment.

Lastly, "Models" are available for study of the human anatomy in respect to design and composition. Nude models are available. These models have been screened for past criminal history. Participants in one of these sessions must be at least 18 of age to attend. back to the top

How much ability or creativity is required?

"Little to no ability or creativity" as is often expressed by first-timers is needed to participate. The class is broken up into manageable steps so as to minimize the anxiety of a new endeavor. There is room for interpretation but are recommended to not deviate entirely from the instructions. Van Gogh and Merlot is dedicated to having an entire class finish their painting. At any point in the course of the session, questions are strongly encouraged to avoid confusion, anxiety, or optimize the amount of time needed to complete your painting. back to the top

Is it like paint-by-numbers?

No pencils are used, only paintbrush and paint. Occasionally, a class will consist of a partially pre-drawn sketch on the canvas to lessen drawing time and increase accuracy of picture. Otherwise, in most of our classes you will be guided on sketching with the paint and paintbrush in a way that is effective but leaves room for interpretation. Many 1st time participants complete this entire class with little to no trouble. back to the top

What type of paint will we be using?

Paint is a student grade acrylic that dries quickly to allow for completion of an entire painting in the allotted time. This paint is easy to remove from surfaces with use of warm water and a little bit of soap but should be removed sooner than later. back to the top

What is provided when I attend?

Paint, brushes, apron, easel, and a canvas will be provided. The canvas is yours to take home at the end of the session. Beverages or snacks may be included, simply check the event details or ask at the time of RSVP/booking of event. back to the top

What do I need to bring?

Drivers license

Payment (cash or check) Make checks payable to "Van Gogh and Merlot." Debit/Credit option is available. Depending on the venue you can bring something to drink like wine, beer, soda, juice, coffee, etc…

Please be responsible about quantity consumed, transportation to and from event, and aware of behavior at this event so as to not lessen the quality of others Van Gogh and Merlot experience. back to the top

How much does it cost?

Open sessions



Prices range between venue and special attached to event. Click on the event link on calendar for details.

Vintage Vines 106 N Evergreen (Evergreen and Sprague)

Twisp 23505 East Appleway (Liberty Lake);

Forza Coffee (Sullivan and Sprague)

Private Parties

Adult Van Gogh and Merlot sessions

$40/person with minimum of 5 and max of 45 people for "Replicating Painting" and "In the Moment" subject matter painting method

$50/person for "Model" painting method;

Juice Box Edition (children under 13)

(children under 13) $20/child with minimum of 10 children and max of 45 people; these events are typically birthday parties or simply children hanging out such as a sleep over. Parents provide the snacks and drinks while the children paint subject matter that is age appropriate. back to the top