Wednesday, August 27, 2014
Larry Bullington doesn’t do anything halfway, but he sure does a lot. He’s self-described as the best-kept secret in town.
Among the North Chattanooga resident’s hobbies are teaching one-on-one art classes, making and selling soap and candles, painting larger-than-life wall murals around town, producing and acting in one-man plays — even officiating weddings.
His wedding minister business cards boast marriages at the courthouse, his house or any other location. Short notice is no problem, and he’ll beat anyone’s price in town, the card reads.
This particular offering all started when a former student asked him to officiate his wedding, prompting Bullington to be ordained. Since he has a bachelor’s degree in ministry and spent some time preaching years ago, it was pretty simple, he said.
“Now, suddenly I’m marrying people almost weekly,” he laughed, saying it’s really just a small part of his overall business.
He fills half of his home with art supplies: colored pencils, paintbrushes, a clay throwing wheel, stained glass, acrylic and oil paints, stencils. The space serves as his teaching studio which he calls The Masters Studio.
“Anybody of any age can come here and do 110 different things,” he said.
Every inch of wall space in the studio and house is covered in either his own work or the work of his students. Every type of art imaginable is displayed, including self-portraits, decoupage, three-dimensional pieces, line drawings and more.
“One of the main reasons I do all these things is so I can go to a kid [he’s teaching] and say, ‘You can do this too,’” Bullington said. “I want kids to be able to do things here that they can’t do anywhere else.”
Things like painting a 16-by-10-foot mural of “Starry Night” at the back of his driveway. Or hot-gluing stained glass to the entire front window.
“Learning is supposed to be fun,” he insisted.
Bullington started his business in 2006, running it full time in 2008 when he was laid off from his high school teaching job. At the time, he said, he just had pencils and paper to offer his students.
Today, he is willing and prepared to incorporate just about any aspect into the business. His next project is a request from a student: She wants to weld.
Learn more and schedule classes at themastersstudio.com. The studio is located at 604 Bitsy Lane and Bullington can be reached at 883-9609.