If you’re like me, you get the itch to do something creative every once in a while, but you know you can’t paint a straight line. Next time you feel like channeling your inner Picasso, visitThe Artist Within in Muncie. Inside this cozy paint-your-own pottery studio, you sit at a table surrounded by beautiful art – paintings on the walls, pottery on the shelves, handmade jewelry from local artists. You pick out pieces of pottery to paint, choose your colors, and zone out. Steeped in this creative environment, the muse fills you and suddenly you look down and say “Hey, I made a really fantastic dinnerware set!” Or something like that.
When my kids were infants, I took them in to get foot-print plates with their birth dates on them. Now, we visit the shop every Christmas to make hand-printed ornaments. One year I painted an elaborate family tree on a platter for my grandma. Most recently, my daughter had her fifth birthday party at The Artist Within. The staff were very helpful and friendly. They had Maddie’s name written on the huge chalkboard in the party room with a big 5 next to it. She was thrilled. Her friends all painted Christmas ornaments. The moms were impressed with my genius idea and I didn’t even have to clean up afterwords. That is my idea of a successful party.
The Artist Within has a gift shop, art gallery, party space, studio specials for “Girls Night Out” and other fun group events, pottery classes and Flat-Fee Fridays. Fridays are easy on the budget because of the flat $5 firing fee. If you’re visiting from out-of-town, a really fun time to visit is on the first Thursday of every month. Historic downtown Muncie is a little known hot-bed of arts and culture. There are more than 20 galleries that participate in First Thursday Gallery Walk (including The Artist Within) from 5-9 pm. Gift shops, art galleries, theaters and restaurants open their doors for exhibit openings and “meet the artist” events. Most serve wine and appetizers, and during the cold months you can find hot chocolate and cider. An old fashion trolley will drive you around town for free.
Visit The Artist Within at 313 S. Walnut Street in Muncie, IN. Their hours are Tuesday through Thursday 11am – 6pm, Fridays 11am – 9pm and Saturdays 11am – 7pm.