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The Value of an Art Filled Summer for Children and Teens


Maybe we're biased, but we believe a summer filled with art making is a summer well spent. While our youth and teen curriculum encourages students to enjoy the creative process from start to finish, our lessons run deeper than that. Instructor-led group discussions, technical exercises, and innovative projects introduce the principles of art and design and how to use them successfully, tools and techniques specific to a variety of media, as well as a creative toolkit that serves students far beyond the art classroom. Below are just a few of the transferable skills walk away with from our workshops. 

Tap into a Creative Flow on Demand
Every day of class, students are asked to brainstorm ideas related to the day’s lesson. It may be determining what imagery to pursue, how to use the materials at hand to achieve a desired effect, or how to connect their personal interests with the current project. Brainstorming on a regular basis throughout the week helps students understand how to activate and maximize their creativity in a variety of situations related to art and other subjects.

Research, Research, Research
Many workshops draw upon art and cultural history for inspiration and instruction. Through visits to the gallery, visual presentations, readings, and discussions, instructors introduce the work of well- and lesser-known artists and movements, art making traditions of cultures from around the world, and materials and ways of work from throughout history. Students bring all of this information together, sift through it, and create projects that are thoughtful and original.

Develop Discipline and Focus
Throughout each week, I walk through the studios to check in on the activity. The level of focus of the students as they work on projects, especially as the week progresses, is a joy to see. Students learn not just by looking or discussing in our workshops, but by experimenting; trying and trying again, and ultimately improving their technical skills and ability to express themselves. They may not master the medium in four days, but they do gain an understanding of the time, tenacity, and ongoing discipline it takes to get really good at something.

Artists learn how to make the absolute most of what they have on hand; inventing new uses for common and even discarded materials. While our youth and teen studios are well-equipped, students often make use of found objects for the foundation of sculptures, inexpensive, household items for carving tools, and oddball recyclables for creating marks and textures in painting and printmaking. For all of the art-specific materials and tools students do use, learning how to maintain and care for them to last for years to come is emphasized.

Studying art prepares children and teens for the creative demands of the ever-evolving environment of the 21st century. Learn more about what we have to offer this summer here and find the workshop that matches your young artist’s interests (and your schedule).

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