Story by Ashley Hand, Photos by Jim Peterson
The first things you’re likely to notice about Andy Morris are her striking auburn hair and bright smile; she’s got colorful tattoos on her forearms, wears little to no makeup, and is given to laughter. And while she may be all of about five-foot-three, this wife, art teacher, and mom of two fills up a room when she gets to talking about her life’s passion. She moved to the Boise area last fall with the dream of growing roots, establishing community, and helping others cultivate their creativity. Just this year, she turned her dream into a reality with her brand new startup: Treasure Valley Art Parties.
Her vision was to create a business focused on bringing people together in a comfortable setting to do something unique and fun. The goal of the evening is for each guest to tap into their own unique creativity while enjoying the company of friends. While guided through the painting step-by-step, with supplies provided by Andy, guests are encouraged to exercise as much creative freedom as they’d like, from the colors on their palette, to the design on their canvas.
The venue can be your home, a coffee shop, or even a gazebo at a neighborhood park. Andy has collaborated with local businesses to introduce public painting events, and currently has ties with Soda Stop in Meridian should a group decide they’d like to dine out while they paint.
Andy’s largest event thus far was an art party at Still Water Hollow, a popular location in Nampa for weddings and receptions. Twenty-two couples who had a special connection to the lovely venue came out and created both artwork and memories. Andy designed a custom landscape of Still Water Hollow, which featured an iconic bridge arching over a pond toward a steepled chapel. The scene was split between two canvases that together formed a complete picture. “It was a creative and symbolic way of reinforcing the idea of two becoming one, and it was just really special to be a part of their evening.”
Andy keeps a collection of pieces to use as options for paint parties, and allows the guests to peruse her work ahead of time to select which piece (or pieces) they like best. “I’m always playing with new ideas, and I’m also more than happy to design new artwork if a hostess has something specific in mind.” Which she did again several weeks ago for a church group event. The theme of the evening was women growing together, and Andy fashioned silhouettes of three willowy women, arms outstretched to the heavens, which entwine like tree branches. “I love sharing my passion for creativity with others, and what I want more than anything is for people to be together, laugh, and love what they take home.”
TREASURE VALLEY ART PARTIES
You can see all of Andy’s original work on Instagram under the name: @treasurevalleyartparties