Local artist adapting to stay afloat as COVID-19 Pandemic continues

NOW: Local artist adapting to stay afloat as COVID-19 Pandemic continues

GRANGER, Ind. - With 2021 in its earliest days, many are still dealing with the challenges brought on by the pandemic. Bars, restaurants, musicians, event centers and artists have all been hit hard by COVID-19 restrictions and loss of business, but one artist in Granger said she is taking the hurdles presented by the pandemic as an opportunity to get creative both as an artist and as a business owner.

"This has just been another trial where we have had to let our creative side shine," Sheena Schramski, the owner of Wine and Canvas in Granger, said.

Schramski's said her business offers art classes and art for sale, but the pandemic has brought about a difficult year.

"It has definitely slowed a lot way more than 40% probably," Schramski said. "Definitely down, but you just kind of work your way through it. We'll come out on the other side."

Schramski said COVID-19 restrictions have forced her to change how she would normally operate utilizing more online and at-home methods.

"We've incorporated different take-home kits and painting virtually, classes that groups can still do together," Schramski said.

While the online lessons and take-home kits have kept the business afloat during the pandemic, Schramski said she would much rather have her lessons be in person because she said art is something you should enjoy with your friends and family.

"It's amazing," Schramski said. "You take for granted all the things that feel so normal, but it's nice to be able to see your friends and talk to people. I'm a very social person. So, I like to be able to have people in person and talk to them and show them exactly what I'm doing and teach them."

Michelle Sagarsee came to one of Schramski's lessons on Sunday with her six-year-old daughter Hadley and said art had become something the two of them have bonded over amidst the pandemic.

"We go to school and to work, but we don't get a lot of opportunities to go out and do something fun together outside of home," Sagarsee said. "So, this was a good chance for us to get to spend some time together."

Schramski said customers need to register online for events at the Wine and Canvas locations and that if your registration is coming up and you don't feel well, you can move your reservation to a different time.

Schramski also said that she hopes art can endure through the pandemic because it's something that is more to her family than a source of income. Her daughter Tori painted a canvas that said "Be who you are" during Schramski’s lesson on Sunday. Tori said that's what she gets out of art.

"Sometimes people try to do what they think other people think is cool, but you should just stick to being yourself," Tori said.

Schramski said she has made some adjustments to her studio locations, including spreading tables out to six feet apart and requiring facemasks while at the tables.

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