Artistic date night at Pinot’s Palette in The District at Tustin Legacy

If you are looking for a date night activity or want to celebrate a birthday with friends, Pinot’s Palette is a neat place to add to the list. Don’t be afraid if you are not an artist or do not have much experience painting. The instructor and assistants are there to help you. There’s wine and music too so just go with it.

  • Since Pinot’s Palette has a bar, guests must be 21 years of age or older. Due to California liquor licensing laws, BYOB is not available at this location and it does not allow outside alcoholic beverages.  However, they have great menu to choose from.

The class is set up with a blank canvas on an easel, a plate of acrylic paint colors that you will be working with during the class, paint brushes of different sizes, and water to clean your brushes in between colors. If you need more paint or want to experiment with more colors, there are plenty to choose from. With acrylics, it’s all about painting in layers. The paints dry within 10 minutes which makes it perfect for this type of class that is two to three hours long.

This evening’s class was called Japanese Spring. Spring inspires the painting of flowers. This particular painting has a Japanese cherry blossom tree set on an island outcrop with the full moon and serene water in the background.

With acrylics, you want to work from the background to the foreground so the moon was first. By using one of the plates as a guide, you can outline the moon for easier placement with yellow paint. Mixing white with the yellow provided the interior face of the moon. White highlights are added to show relief in the moon’s surface.

Second, the night sky needs to be added. Using a light blue, the horizontal line for the water level can be made. Dark blue paint is used from the canvas edges and the water line to about an inch from the moon’s edge. Using dark blue with some white, a halo effect can be added to give the moon a gradient glow.

Third, using the light blue with some green, the water can be added to the bottom of the painting. Adding white to the light blue along with blending with white paint will give you the effect of water motion and/or reflection from the glow of the moon.

The instructor will give you breaks in between layers so you can stretch, grab another drink, or just see what other students are doing around the room. This also gives your painting a chance to dry so layers can be added.

Fourth, using green, the island can be added in a triangular shape. By using the medium or small brush with green, you can start adding blades of grass in an upward flicking motion. Mixing white and/or yellow with the green will give you different tones to use to show relief.

Fifth, using brown, the tree can be added along with branches. Adding white to the brown or using white on the left side of the tree shows dimension since the moon is your light source. Using your small brush, smaller branches can be made.

Sixth and the final layer, the cherry blossoms can be added. Using the red paint and the small brush, flowers can be made by dotting or blotting the brush. For texture and variety, add white slowly to your red so pinks and white start to mix, looking like opening flower blossoms.

This is one of many painting that you may have a chance to do and you will have a nice souvenir to take home with you. Every class is different so you can come back with your date or bring your friends. It’s just so much fun!  

For more information:
Pinot’s Palette
2479 Park Ave.
Tustin, CA 92782
Parking: Use the parking lot on the west side of the District Promenade near the JT Schmid’s – less walking and you don’t have to cross the busy street entrance on the east side. 

I have been an artist since grade school with an emphasis in commercial art in high school. I also have an Associates of Arts degree in Advertising Graphic Design.