I love painting. I’m no pro, but there’s something cathartic and amazing about the feeling you get when you drag a paintbrush loaded with paint across a surface. I especially enjoy painting because it’s a way to express yourself even if you think you’re not “artistic,” as the brush and paint automatically form interesting, and sometimes unexpected, shapes. Writing can be hard if you’re not so adept at formulating thoughts into words, and working with metal or glass can be more intimidating, but there’s something about paint that’s just fun and forgiving.

As Rosh Hashanah approaches and you’re thinking about fun ways to start the year off right, why not challenge yourself to give painting a shot? It’s an ideal way to bring yourself into your home décor, plus handmade paintings are great gifts for family and friends hosting holiday meals. Here are several great opportunities for first-timers and pros alike:

Newbie?

  • Check out Paint Nite, where teachers guide you step-by-step through their simple and fun painting choices (plus you can drink as you go!). Use promo code AUGUST14 to save 40 percent through the end of the month.
  • Looking to recreate the style of the great painting masters? The Paint Bar has just what you’re looking for and can help you break down famous techniques into simple, manageable steps. You can create your own painting of Boston’s famous “Make Way for Ducklings” sculpture, paint your version of Fenway Park or even paint directly on a tote bag (the perfect place to stash apples during an apple-picking excursion for Rosh Hashanah!). This business was started by a local Jewish mother-daughter duo, and the opening of their second location on Newbury Street a year ago is proof that they know what’s up.

Feeling like going to the next level?

  • The New Art Center in Newton offers a variety of classes where you can learn techniques to create your own works. Aside from painting, they offer a wide array of classes in different media so you can also see how you feel about sculpting, drawing and more.
  • Art School 99, run by talented Russian-Jewish painter Alexandra Rozenman, is a way to indulge your inner artist. This gallery/studio is the real deal, and Alexandra will teach you some serious painting techniques so you can create true art of your own.