Paradise Palette urges people to free their inner artist

LIHUE — An evening with Paradise Palette is an adults-only chance to be a boozy artist for a few hours and to pick up a few skills in the process.

“If you’re wanting to drink, why not drink and paint,” said Madison Joseph, who owns the business with her partner Richard Gamboa. “This is a chance to get together and do something fun and creative, and drink some wine.”

In fact, at a Paradise Palette event they’ve got one piece of advice that’s become something of a slogan:

“If you don’t like your painting, have another glass of wine,” Joseph said.

Joseph and Gamboa are two creative people who live in Kalaheo and have two things in common: an affinity for art and for alcohol. In May, the pair combined their two interests and created a business.

“We partner with places like Mariachi’s and Grandma’s Café, and we bring in about 20 people, the restaurant makes money on food and drink sales. We make our money on ticket sales,” Gamboa said.

They also do corporate parties and private events like birthday parties or baby showers.

“We saw that there was a need on Kauai for something different people could do, something fun where people could get together, no skills necessary, and have fun being artistic,” Joseph said.

All of their public events have been sold out, including Blue Oasis at Ha Coffee Bar on Sunday, Jan. 22, when about 20 people brought their favorite bottles and learned how to paint the moonlight reflecting off the ocean at night.

Jodi Villanueva and Yvette Racca made it a girls’ night with a bottle of white wine and light snacks.

“We’re definitely going to come back and do it again,” Racca said.

Also out on the town were Julie Hurst and Paola Felippa, who both have been to a couple of different Paradise Palette events.

“It’s always such a great time,” Hurst said. “And everyone’s paintings come out so different.”

That’s one of the fun things that Gamboa has noticed.

“Everyone is painting the same thing, but you see so many differences depending on people’s personalities,” Gamboa said. “It’s really cool to see how they all look so different when we’re done.”

When you walk through the doors of a Paradise Palette event, you’re seat comes with an apron, easel, canvas, paints, palette, brushes, water jars, and two-hour guided instruction on a painting from the collection.

“The designs are paradise inspired,” Joseph said. “This island is full of inspiration, we have palm trees and the ocean and the honu. We also get inspiration from our followers.”

Paradise Palette makes an effort not to use plastic and works with materials that are recyclable and sustainable.

“We have a respect for nature and for this island and we want to make sure we’re being as responsible as possible,” Joseph said. “We provide a group setting so we’re not creating as much waste and really, we want to stand for quality.”

Once tickets are purchased online at their website, the only responsibility guests have is to snag their favorite vino and relax.

“No one has to come here with a background in art,” Joseph said. “Be open to having fun, release yourself from the thought you have to be good at anything. You come to have a good time and you take home your own 16- x 20-inch canvas.”



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