There is a sizable community of art enthusiasts within Riverside and many curious people willing to learn a new craft.
This community has provided Chelsea Franzer and Chris Perez with a clientele that is making their small business a success.
Their business, The Paint Sesh, is based in Riverside and offers people a relaxing atmosphere to follow Franzer in a guided paint session. Franzer and Perez host their events in bars and restaurants throughout Southern California as well as offering their service at private events.
On March 6, Franzer and Perez set up tables, chairs and 28 canvases to guide guests through “A Night in Paris,” a painting featuring the Eiffel Tower, moonlight and cherry blossoms. The session took place at The MTL, a bar in Riverside.
Franzer’s business is still in its early stages, the company has existed for less than two years and she admits that running her business is not as simple as she thought it would be.
“There’s so much behind the scenes like adding events to the website, the set up, going out to try to get more venues, there’s a lot more to it than just painting,” Franzer said.
This is where Perez comes in. Perez created the webpage for the business, assists with customer service and the set up and tear down process of their events.
While they both have passion for their business, Franzer and Perez would like to hire employees to ease their workload in the future.
“We’re trying to make sure this pays us and once we can finally breathe and be settled then we definitely want to bring people in,” Perez said.
Despite the amount of work both Franzer and Perez put in, their energy never falters. Franzer jumps between instructing the crowd from a stage to walking up to individual guests to assist them. Perez checks on attendee’s paint palettes and replenishes them with whatever colors they may need.
They make for a great duo and provide a friendly atmosphere that is clearly appreciated.
Among the attendees are Jessica Agbonkpolo and Remi Ajike who were out for a date night. By the end of the night, the couple believed that everyone should attend a paint session.
“Don’t be nervous. Do it your own style, it’s all about enjoying yourself. Art, at the end of the day, is about interpretation and doing what you like,” Ajike said. Agbonkpolo agrees and believes even if mistakes are made, creating a beautiful piece is still possible. “If you make mistakes it’s easy to fix it, so just do whatever you can,” she said.
Although it is a guided paint session, there are definitely guests that customize their pieces. Ajike surrounds his Eiffel Tower with smaller buildings, creating a landscape that looks like an entire town. Another guest makes her blossoms yellow instead of red.
Franzer doesn’t take offense to the people making alterations, she encourages it. “Yes I’m here to help but there is no right or wrong when it comes to art and you should just let loose and have fun,” she said.
The atmosphere is friendly and throughout the night everyone’s talents are realized and many attendees tell Franzer and Perez they intend to be returning customers.
For more information on events go to thepaintsesh.com.