Reasons to join the Columbia Artist Society: absolutely magnificent mornings.

Two weeks ago, something about the Saturday morning air said “this is the perfect time to get outside and enjoy the city around you.” Maybe it was because it was the first truly non-humid day of the summer or maybe it was just getting a good night’s sleep, but as I walked to meet the Columbia Artist Society for their Saturday Morning Sketch in the park, I knew I had made the right call getting outside that morning.

While the Columbia Artist Society most likely does not control the weather (not gonna fully rule that out though), they couldn’t have chosen a more perfect day for their first in-person gathering since the beginning of the pandemic. Being the summer, only a small group showed up that morning, but the size of the group made the event that much more relaxed as we wandered through the park looking for the right spot to sit down and draw. Our group was a mix of students and New York locals, all with an interest in taking the time to come together and draw.

The group was lead by Columbia Art Society leaders Ausra and Julia, who have held online group meetings for Columbia Art Society throughout the pandemic, and they were both clearly excited to be shifting back to in-person gatherings.

The Columbia Artist Society focuses less on skill and more on creating an inviting environment to come together and create art, and Saturday morning was just that. As a first-time attendee, I was excited to have the opportunity to be around others looking to spend their time making art. We shared our sketches with each other, some drawing the park landscape, others drawing the other participants and park passers-by. Everyone drawing with their own eye and style highlighted the value of the Columbia Artist Society–there is something special about making art while surrounded by others equally excited to create.

As people finished their sketches, we packed up and said our goodbyes. It felt nice to get out and draw for a few hours, and I was proud of my own little sketch. In the busyness and chaos that is New York City, taking the time to sit in a more natural environment and slow down was important, and I was grateful for the opportunity the Columbia Art Society created to do just that (something I’ll have to keep in mind as the school year approaches).

While the Columbia Art Society does not have anything planned for the month of August, they will be back in full swing come the Fall semester. The club leaders mentioned that they are looking forward to gathering in different parts of the City as well as meetings on campus, bringing the Columbia artist community back together again.

You can stay up to date on Columbia Artist Society’s latest announcements and events on their Instagram and newsletter.

Some beautiful art via Charlotte Slovin