Christa Callen-Tarr sought more time to help clients bring out their creative side while painting, so she decided to come to them in the comforts of their own homes.
That’s why Callen-Tarr, who already teaches art classes at two Albuquerque studios, launched her mobile paint party service called Create U 505 in March 2021.
Callen-Tarr, who resides in Rio Rancho and bases her business here, said with more people opting for delivery services amid the COVID-19 pandemic, she followed that business model when she expanded operations.
“I just pack everything up in my car, drive to the location and set up,” she said.
Callen-Tarr, who also launched Create U 505’s new website last week, said the plus side of her business is clientele feel more comfortable in their home environments and may invite a few friends over, as opposed to making the trip to a studio building. She also said there may be that lingering worry about how well a studio’s cleaned or maintained, or simply going to a studio at all.
“When you’re in your own home, and you’re trying something new, it helps to be in a place that you’re familiar and comfortable with,” she said. “And I like visiting with people.”
She said she’s noticed an uptick in people wanting her to come to their homes since Christmas. She also said requested painting designs include chili peppers and things involving Southwest-colored paints.
“I’m hoping, hoping, hoping more folks will call,” Callen-Tarr said.
When venturing out to a home, she said she brings painting equipment with her — from table covers and aprons to canvasses, paint and brushes. She said most of the time a table area’s already set up in a home, but she has small tables and chairs she can bring in if necessary.
“People want to create, and it’s very helpful when they’re feeling lonely and isolated,” Callen-Tarr said. “When you have a brush in your hand, and you’re putting color on a canvass, you’re in the moment. It helps people let go of some things that they’ve been worried about.”
Aside from the goal of making it out to several homes a week, said she hopes to use Create U 505 for mobile painting studio sessions at venues like local restaurants, coffee houses or during events held at Campus Park later this year.
Create U 505’s hours are 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Fridays and 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturdays. Callen-Tarr said the starting price for a home painting session is $20 per person.
For more information or to sign up for a session, call (505) 604-0272, visit createu505.com or message Create U 505’s Facebook page.