“Autumn Audrey” is by Cory Bennett, who will teach “Mixed Media Painting from Start to Finish” March 14-April 16 at Northwind Art School in Port Townsend. (Cory Bennett)

“Autumn Audrey” is by Cory Bennett, who will teach “Mixed Media Painting from Start to Finish” March 14-April 16 at Northwind Art School in Port Townsend. (Cory Bennett)

’Date Nights,’ ‘Art with Heart’ planned at Port Townsend art school

PORT TOWNSEND — Cory Bennett freely proclaims it: “I get a high from interacting with people on a creative level,” said the muralist. He’s a new teacher at Northwind Art School, offering “Mixed Media Paintings from Start to Finish,” from March 14 through April 18.

Bennett’s course is one of more than 40 classes offered this season at the nonprofit art school.

These include “Mindfulness Practices for Art Making” with teacher Meg Kaczyk this Tuesday; “Art Connects: Connecting Your Hearts through Art” on March 15 and “Adult & Child Art with Heart” on March 19.

Details are available at https://northwindart.org, and participants are encouraged to sign up well in advance to ensure enrollment.

Class fees start at $25 for “Adult & Child Art with Heart,” including all supplies. The “Art Connects” fee of $60 also covers both participants and all materials. “Mindfulness Practices for Art Making” is $60 including supplies.

“Number one, you’re going to have a great time,” Bennett said when asked how he’d invite beginning artists to his six-week “Mixed Media Painting” course.

Muralist Cory Bennett will teach a six-week “Mixed Media Painting from Start to Finish” course starting March 14 at Northwind Art School in Port Townsend. (Cory Bennett)

Muralist Cory Bennett will teach a six-week “Mixed Media Painting from Start to Finish” course starting March 14 at Northwind Art School in Port Townsend. (Cory Bennett)

The artist, who’s originally from Las Vegas, has created murals for locations across the West. He attended college in California and studied architecture and computer-assisted design — “and then,” Bennett recalled, “I realized I wanted to color outside the lines.”

This led to moves around California and Washington state as he developed his own artistic style. Bennett calls it creating from the heart; he paints portraits of musicians and wildly colorful murals for inside and outside businesses. He’s also part of the “Positive Frequencies” art exhibit at Seattle’s Northwest African American Museum.

“Cory Bennett represents what we love to do at Northwind Art School,” said Northwind Communications Manager Diane Urbani.

“We want to give artists, whether they’re beginners, professionals or anywhere in between, a place to learn new techniques and draw energy from each other,” she added.

Last weekend at the school, Seattle painter Catherine Gill taught a Color Mixing for Watercolor workshop while Sequim artist and poet Jaiden Dokken led an Intro to Linocut Printmaking class.

“The experience was fabulous. Catherine Gill’s lifelong pursuit of art speaks for itself,” participant Teresa McLain wrote in her class evaluation.

Another participant praised Gill’s class: “Surrounding myself with colors and painting in any medium gives me great joy and calms me down,” wrote Bobbie McDaniel.

In the printmaking class, participants appreciated Dokken’s teaching style.

“At some point I got in the groove and flow state,” wrote Jen Cohen.

Dana Sullivan and Kate Lovejoy have been co-teaching “Adult & Child Art with Heart,” what they call an “art date” for parents and their kids ages 6 to 17. The classes have been a success, Urbani said, with participants making comical pop-up greeting cards and memory booklets.

Now Lovejoy and Sullivan are offering “Date Nights”: friends, spouses, siblings or parents and teens are invited. The two teaching artists will guide these art evenings so the pairs can bond through a creative project.

“No prior artistic experience is necessary whatsoever for ‘Date Night’ or ‘Adult & Child Art with Heart,’” Urbani said.

Adult & Child Art with Heart is offered at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday afternoons, March 19, April 30 and May 16. Date Night is set for 5:30 p.m. April 11 and May 9. As with the rest of the classes, more information is found at NorthwindArt.org.

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