You'd have to have been living in a tree to not know about our big First Thursdays events at the Orlando Museum of Art and the Third Thursdays Downtown Orlando, because their names include when they occur each month. There are many other regular events that aren't as obvious or as well-known, but I'm hoping to change that today!
•Every Sunday, noon-5 p.m., local professional artist Marla E opens her Altamonte Springs studio (290 Frances Circle) so that you can be an artist, too. She loves to help you create and/or learn to paint with no experience needed. She supplies the studio and all supplies for only $25. Call her for details, 407-463-0762.
•The Maitland Art Center (431 W. Packwood Ave., 407-539-2181) has an informal figure-drawing group (with live model) on the first and third Thursdays each month, 6:45-9:15 p.m. All skill levels are welcome. You bring sketch materials, MAC supplies the model and easels for $15. For something completely different, check out the free Artists' Critique & Conversation on the fourth Tuesday of each month in which three panelists review the work of local artists. After the critique you can chat, offer your opinions and ask questions. Last month's event was standing room only.
•Very busy artist Parker Sketch spends a lot of his time organizing regular events that are open to everyone. Two of his most popular are Artists@work Wednesdays, 6:30-10:30 p.m. at OLV Cafe (25 W. Crystal Lake St., Orlando) in the SoDo shopping center, and the Orlando Artists Critique Group, which meets the second Thursday of the month, 6-10 p.m., at one of several locations. You can come and watch artists work (and sell) and/or participate yourself. Use each event's name (or Parker Sketch) to find them on Facebook.
Next time you're in downtown Orlando, check out the Micro Gallery in the 55 West development on Church Street. It's not your typical four-walls gallery; it's in the busy inside concourse.