So you took on drawing to beat lockdown boredom, but now you’re ready to get social again. Try Drink and Draw, where you can sketch away in Mitte’s Historischer Hafen – while on a boat! Yes, that’s right, these near-daily drawing classes take place on a 90-year-old boat, which in its long and industrious life has served as both a coal carriage and practice room for a jazz band.
Run by a group of six artsy friends (founders Bayar and Julian met while studying game design at HTW Berlin; the others are painters and illustrators), Drink and Draw first came about when their usual drawing meeting started charging for drinks. What began in 2014 as a students’ party is now an art school and rentable event space. The name is a nod to an internationally renowned institution of artists meeting in bars. “Getting a drink together can be an ice-breaker,” Julian explains.
The cosy space, freshly renovated thanks to a €3000 crowdfunding campaign and large quantities of elbow grease, fits about 20 people. It’s furnished with old couches and mixed chairs, and decorated with fishing nets and artworks from the classes. On Tuesday nights, you can challenge yourself with rapid-fire life-drawing sessions (€15 for two hours), ranging from two minutes through to 15 – or whenever you hear Bayar shout “aaaaaand time-out!”
Everyone is welcome: beginners and established artists, analogue and digital drawers, pensioners and teenagers, German and English speakers. “We had a 14-year-old come in with his mother,” Bayar recalls. “Big names like Jürgen Schlotter come here as well,” Julian adds.
During the break, you can chat about your pieces with fellow artists or enjoy the view over the Spree with a bottle of Flens. (They have soft drinks too for those who don’t believe in the creative power of alcohol.) At the end of each session, the group comes together and votes on their favourite sketch. If you’ve got what it takes, you can win free drinks, or a voucher for your next class.
Drink and Draw Berlin, Märkisches Ufer 1z, Mitte. Visit drinkanddrawberlin.com for details