Creating art has always been about self-expression, passion, and feeling. But for most people, creating art is intimidating and it is not something they're likely to try on their own. With this in mind, Krista Goodrich created Masterpiece Mixers. It's a paint and party studio that helps participants capture a little of their own passion as they create a piece of art.
Located in Suwanee Town Center across from City Hall, Masterpiece Mixers has the tagline “It's fun art, not fine art!” There is something here for aspiring artists, seasoned artists, or those just looking to get away from the business of life.
Participants paint their interpretation of an existing painting and then take it home to enjoy. But it's more than the painting that participants take away. They create an experience to remember by finding connections with other participants, the subject matter, and their inner feelings.
Goodrich has always had an entrepreneurial spirit. Prior to the paint studio, she owned several small businesses, including a trucking company and thrift store. She exudes energy, passion, and confidence in her life work. “I love running businesses” Goodrich says. “I have a dream job. I help people feel better about themselves. They are proud of the work they create.”
Her knack for art was inspired by her mother, who provided activities for crafts and creativity in their home. She also spent a semester in France while in college to study art. Most of the artwork you see in the studio is created by Goodrich or one of her artists.
Masterpiece Mixeers was created in 2008 after Goodrich researched similar businesses. Her first store opened in Braselton in 2008 and was profitable in six months. She opened her second store in Suwanee in 2010 and then relocated to the current location in January 2012.
Goodrich prefers simple art. She isn't looking for fine art, perfect lines, etc. She picks subjects that will have wider appeal and that customers can create themselves. The subjects used in class come from her and her staff or public use works.
Classes are instructor-led by an artist. While the instruction is geared for novices, more seasoned painters will find the time beneficial as well. One of the instructors, Thays Miller, says “some customers have a fear of putting the brush on the canvas.” There is no backspace key. So she uses her time to put them at ease and provide guided assistance as needed.
Watching a class is like seeing a time-lapse photography session. The participants aren't quite sure how it will all come together. Seemingly disjointed patches of colors and lines slowly start to take shape. Then suddenly their own masterpiece appears on the canvas. It's a moment of smiles and sharing with each other, which is perhaps the real treasure in their brief journey.
Masterpiece Mixers is a popular place for private events such as birthday and bachelorette parties. But customers also come on girls night out, date nights, or just to find a peaceful escape. On date nights, couples can make complementary paintings, where the subject of each painting is joined to represent a pair
The website has a calendar that shows the paintings the instructor will lead each night and the cost to participate. Classes typically last two to three hours and with five paid classes, customers receive a free class.
The paintings that the instructor completes during the class are for sale for a nominal charge.