Geek Brush Studio is coming soon to downtown Chelsea
Inspiration, motivation, a therapeutic feeling and a little bit of artist Bob Ross are some of the cool things Geek Brush Studio is bringing to downtown Chelsea.
Maybe you’ve recently seen the cardboard cutout of Bob Ross, the famous televised artist on PBS from the 1970s and 80s, peeking out from a window on Main Street in downtown. That’s Geek Brush Studio.
It’s an art studio owned by local artist, Brenda Fineman. She will soon be opening up a storefront for the studio in downtown Chelsea at 105 ½ S. Main Street, where she will host a gallery of original artwork and hold regular workshops teaching Bob Ross’s wet-on-wet painting style.
The Sun Times News (STN) connected with Fineman to ask her about this.
Fineman said, “Like Bob emphasized in his Joy of Painting series,” the painting workshops she teaches are open to anyone interested in art, having fun, and feeling the inspiration that comes from creating art. She said anyone of any experience level and of almost any age can take a workshop. While most of the workshops would be best for those 10 years old and up, she said she also offers workshops for the younger generations.
STN asked her about the importance of art.
“The amazing thing about art and the act of creating is that it can bring inspiration and motivation toward other aspects of one’s life,” she said. “It is another form of therapy. It is a release from the mundane; a getaway from the troubles we face. When you paint or create anything really, it can help bring new perspectives as to how you view the world and others around you. Art is inspiration for growth. Art is inspiration for peace.”
A big part of what inspired her is traced back to Bob Ross. STN asked her about him and how he helped inspire Fineman, who
“As a youth watching Bob on PBS, I was fascinated with his ability to create such incredible scenes in a short time,” she said. “I always dreamed of following along with him but did not have the painting materials available to me. Between the inspiration given to me by Bob and my art teacher in elementary school, I imagined myself as an art teacher and would pretend to create and teach others how to create masterpieces. It wasn’t until the pandemic that I was inspired to revisit that dream teaching family and friends via Zoom as a way to connect during quarantine. The joy I felt from inspiring others to create along with me gave me the courage to start classes in person and become a Certified Ross Instructor (CRI).”
Her web page gives some further insight into how Geek Brush Studio came about:
“Originating as a mostly self-taught artist, Brenda Fineman has dabbled in different mediums over the last 30+ years. While drawing and painting was always an enjoyable past-time, she initially decided to focus on art in the written form and help others write as well.”
“Brenda taught English composition for over seven years at Washtenaw Community College until shortly after the birth of her first child. At this time, she left academia and began to dabble in writing and illustrating children’s books. The act of illustrating the books ignited a new spark in her, creating the passion to create more visual arts using colored pencil and ink. It was during the pandemic when she decided to connect her family via Zoom to teach them how to paint using acrylics. As a creative way to stay connected, she did the same with her book club. At this point Brenda realized the joy of not only painting but also her love for teaching were a wonderful combination. She then began creating her own original paintings and holding classes at a local private bar.”
Fineman said the studio will offer not only organized public classes, but also private workshop parties and one-on-one sessions. The downtown storefront will also be a gallery space to showcase art works by not only Fineman, but also by local artists from around the greater Washtenaw County area, as well as an original work by Bob Ross’ son, Steve Ross. There painting supplies and Bob Ross gifts available for purchase.
In addition to the studio, some of the locations where you can find her classes are at Robin Hills Farm and The Crazy Diamond in Chelsea and Cherry Creek Cellars in Brooklyn. Later in March, Fineman is holding a special class at the Chelsea District Library as well.
The Chelsea Area Chamber of Commerce is scheduled to have a ribbon cutting ceremony for the grand opening of Geek Brush Studio at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, April 4.