Building a Community of Painters at Pinot’s Palette Fort Collins

Bold green, blue, and orange canvases dot the brightly lit Pinot’s Palette Studio. Voices remark on brush strokes, color choice, and fur type. Glasses of craft beer and red wine clink on the long tables. On this occasion at Pinot’s, located in the heart of Downtown Fort Collins on Mountain Avenue, class attendees are painting their pets. Each attendee has been given a canvas with an image of their animal to bring to life with color, courage, and just a little help from the painting instructors.

Pinot’s Palette Fort Collins, owned by Tony and Kim Curtis, is a place for all ages to get in touch with their inner creative. Art studio and wine bar come together in a fun atmosphere that can make even the least experienced painter feel like Michelangelo. Or at least close.

“It doesn’t matter if you haven’t painted since first grade,” class teacher Morgan Charboneau says. “You’re going to make something you’re proud of. While you’re here you might not see it, but when you take it home you’re going to know you created something really good.”

The real art created at Pinot’s might not be one made with brushes, however. The space lends itself fully to the art of creating a community of people enjoying themselves. In fact, it does such a good job being a place people want to be that many class attendees have been before in recent months. Roommates had returned to paint the pug, Benjamin. Realtor Huston Hoffman had come back to paint her pup, Colonel Mustard. Multiple couples had just visited a few months prior, but were back to paint pets with names like Rigel (after the star in Orion), Henry and George.Pinot’s Palette offers many classes with many different images to paint. Through the month of March, events include daytime classes for the kids, multiple happy hours, and a bouquet of bright floral pieces. The studio hosts open studio days and has a private room for parties. A wine and beer selection is available for guests, coming with a reminder not to mix up brush cups and drink cups.

“I brought my husband to paint,” Hoffman says. “It was even one of those super Valentines-y ones with hearts. He had fun though; it wouldn’t take any convincing to get him to come back.”

For more information about drink specials, paintings, and to sign up for a class, visit their website at


Ashley Davidson (left) paints her pup, Darby, while Huston Hoffman paints Colonel Mustard at Pinot’s Palette Fort Collins.
Teacher Morgan Charboneau paints and instructs attendees about picking the perfect background color for their pooch.
A full classroom at Paint your Pet at Pinot’s Fort Collins. All images used with permission.

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