Picasso wasn’t made in a day.

I am always on the lookout for something fun to do in Lagos. My regular day consists of me holding myself prisoner at home, slowly frittering away from the monotony of life, wondering what fun things other people are doing.

So when I heard of an event called Paint The Night Africa, I was immediately down for it. It is a fun painting class where people, art novices especially, can be guided through a painting session while simultaneously sipping a glass of wine or whatever. This is an article about their launch. I went on their website www.ptnafrica.com and found that they had an event on the 19th of March. My friend and I registered for it and waited excitedly for the day to come.

It costs 5000 for one person, a steep price for an unemployed person like myself but I rationalised it this way: I never go out, so this is actually not too much money to spend on what is possibly my only outing in the foreseeable future.

The event was held at a cozy restaurant in Victoria Island called Gingers Tapas and Grill. It was scheduled to start at 6:30pm and being the Punctual Polly that I am, I got there right as the clock struck half past 6. But as usual Nigerian Timing* came into effect.

Nigerian timing aka African timing aka Coloured people timing: This is when an event is billed to start at 6:30 and people do not get there till 8pm. It is expected and accepted that people will be late and the event will not start on time so nobody leaves their house on time, nobody except me that is. 

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Apart from the instructors/organisers, we were the first people there and so we waited. The waitress came over with menus but we were not interested in drinking or eating anything, we just wanted to know the WIFI password. I suspect the waitress did not want us to know the password because we had to ask over and over again before she muttered something. We then tried this password multiple times in multiple ways but it did not work. Eventually we had to give her our phones and she took them away to some magical land and when they were returned, they were connected to the wifi. Hallelujah.

At 7:15, a few more people had arrived and the organiser said we could not wait any longer for the latecomers and the painting class was declared open.

The theme of the class was Crazy Daisies. We received a brief tutorial from the instructor on what brushes to use, how to mix colours and things like that. Then we started to paint and by paint I mean I just closed my eyes and threw random colours on the canvas. At the end of the class, this is what I ended up with

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Mine was the darkest and the busiest and least artistic in the class. Every one else had nice pastel backgrounds with minimalist themes and I had this. I love it though. I really do. I’m going to ship it off to the Tate Modern and become a millionaire.

The class was fun and I hope to go back soon to redeem myself. On the drive home, I started to think about all the ways I could have gone about this painting. I might just invest in a few canvases and paint brushes and paint the night away in my room. Painting is not as difficult as I thought it was, and in this age of pretentious art snobs and with what is considered art these days, I reckon I have a bright future as an artist.

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