8 min 44 sec

Boston Friends Create Multicultural Masterpiece

When two training managers notice a lack of diversity in their local art scene, they launch a for-profit, multicultural space for paint parties.
Arts & Crafts Community Diversity Service

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What It's About

Two friends bring more diversity to standard sip and paint parties.

Business Model
Arts & Crafts
Skills Required
Organization & Coordination
Profit Potential

Words of Wisdom

Victoria and Taneekah have some great advice for those looking to follow in their footsteps:

"Do your research before taking the leap. Know your target market and find innovative ways to reach them. Once you have the butts in the seat, and you have the talent/skill to facilitate the event, the rest will fall into place!"

Fun Fact

Combining painting with wine tasting has become a popular pastime. But for Sanaa with Friends, their first event was completely dry due to the lack of a liquor license. However, it didn’t tarnish the experience, proving a little sip isn’t essential when having fun with friends.

Notes from Chris

Episode 824
Victoria Downes and Taneekah Johnson are two friends living in Boston. Although they both work full-time jobs, they’ve also dabbled in moneymaking ventures in the past. Victoria had a successful hustle selling Shea Butter, and Taneekah sold custom jewelry and cupcakes.

While creating and building is in their DNA, a few years ago they both found themselves back working full-time jobs as trainers in the public health field. The jobs were fulfilling, but sites like the level 1 trauma center where Victoria worked were not necessarily the best environment for artistic flourishing.

So, they looked outside their work to get their creative fix. For both of them, they found enjoyment in art.

Around this time, the paint party scene was just starting to take off. If you aren’t familiar with a paint party, let me give you the quick brush strokes… these gatherings typically take place in an art studio or similar space and are run in groups. Over the course of a couple of hours, an art instructor show everyone how to create a masterpiece of their very own. This is usually done while enjoying some good wine and a cheese platter. That’s what makes it a paint ‘party.’

It’s easy to see why the business model was popular. The parties were just a lot of fun, and people love them. Victoria and Taneekah were no exception.

But, they realized there was a multicultrual spin lacking in the Boston paint party scene. Boston is a truly diverse city with people of many races, ethnicities, and backgrounds represented. Victoria and Taneeka devised a concept that was similar to other paint parties, where the artworks the groups created would reflect the diverse array of people in their city.

With that, the easel was set and the paint party started. The two friends would start their own version of the concept in honor of the spirit they wanted to convey. They’d call it Sanaa with Friends—Sanaa being the Swahili word for art.

The business has generated $25,000 for these hustling artists in the last twelve months, and that’s while only opening the business part-time. It’s not quite enough to quit their jobs and go all-in, but that’s not the goal for now.

The best part for Victoria and Taneeka are the parties themselves. They don’t feel at all like work. At these parties, they get to paint, connect, and network with their local community.

These two artistic friends are living proof that with a simple idea, and a bit of perseverance, any side hustle can become a great work of art.


  • Sanaa with Friends: Learn more about what Victoria and Taneekah are doing over on their website!


Inspiration is good; inspiration combined with action is better. Now get back to work!

Yours in the revolution,


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Quote of the Day
"Do your research before taking the leap. Know your target market and find innovative ways to reach them. Once you have butts in the seat and the talent/skill to facilitate the event, the rest will fall into place!"
—Victoria Downes & Taneekah Johnson #SideHustleSchool

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