When Ashley Smith, owner of Moonface Studio, started her Paint at the Park event this summer, she only had seven people show up. The next month she had 200.
Word of mouth and social media drew a large crowd for her free event, something that surprised Smith, who puts on Paint in the Park out of her love for art.
Smith’s third Paint in the Park was held Sunday, but didn’t garner the same number of people as her previous paint party, which she attributes to the large draw of Reid’s Apple Festival.
Paint in the Park is not a class, according to Smith. She just provides the free canvas and paint and does the leg work to secure the location — Yellow Creek Park. People will often ask what to paint and Smith gives them a simple answer: “Trust yourself.”
Smith started a fundraiser online for her free painting event and much to her surprise raised $560, which she put toward wooden canvases and paint. Other artists even donated paint to help Smith’s cause.
While Smith does not pursue art as a full-time job, she is an avid hobbyist with an artistic family who supports her. Both Smith’s uncle and grandmother helped at Sunday’s event. She has a small studio in her home, but says, “I like to consider wherever I am at is where the studio is at.”
With weather getting colder, yesterday was the last Paint in the Park for 2018, but Smith says the community can definitely expect to see the event again when the weather permits in 2019.