Jenny Long is a painter who has always dreamed of having a space that brings people together.
Last year, she opened an art hub, which has since morphed into Long Gallery + Studios.
Up to eight resident artists can use the space as their own studio and display their works of art.
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“We have a wonderful kind of art school environment where we’re all critiquing each other,” Long said. “I’m always looking for new artists to feature in here. Art that inspires me to show the Penticton community that is a little more contemporary. Edgy stuff that you wouldn’t normal see here.”
In addition to making and selling art, Long also offers plenty of opportunities for budding artists to emerge.
“I teach classes. I do family paint nights and corporate team-building,” Long said. “Just really enhancing creativity in the community.”
Long also puts her skills to the test at live painting shows and competitions, like the Art Battle Regional Finals in Vancouver, where the artist had only 20 minutes to finish a piece of art in front of a live audience.
“You can’t look at a reference photo, which is how I work,” Long said. “You have to use all the same paint as all the other painters, so it’s really challenging because I didn’t have any of my normal professional acrylics that I love. But it’s just like live music: You have to go for it and feed off the energy that’s around you.”
Long believes art has enhanced her life in countless ways.
“It’s given me dreams that come to life. It’s given me opportunities to meet really cool people,” Long said. “And being together on a level that’s so meaningful and authentic.”
No Lines with Jenny Long is a new YouTube channel that the artist recently launched, inspired by Bob Ross, to encourage people to be less fearful about creating imagery.
“People can watch at home and follow along and paint with me because nothing is better than inspiring others to just not be scared to paint,” she said.
Long encourages the community to drop by and try their hand at getting creative.
“If you can find one thing that you’re just stoked to do and make time in your day to do it, everything else in your day is so much better.”
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