By Karen John
Passionate is a word that describes each of the four artists who are teaching Kid’s Summer Art Classes at the Sanderosa Gallery this July and August. Their passion for art and children artists connects these artist/teachers. Though their individual styles are different, each artist agrees that helping children see themselves as artists is a key theme of this summer’s classes.
Chimera and other Abstractions, Steve Pastore’s class, uses found items, including wire, metal, plastic, and wood, to create art. Add to these supplies each individual student’s vision and it is easy to see how Steve guides his students to create one-of-a-kind pieces. The student might create anything from a mythical creature to a hanging mobile of shapes and colors.
Picasso Pickets, taught by Sue Sutton, gives students a brief background on Picasso’s abstract style. Using Picasso’s example de-emphasizes the pressure children sometimes feel to create “perfect” art. Sue uses sanded, wooden, fence pickets for her students’ creations. Adding paint and gluing buttons or beads, and fun google eyes or mustaches brings these unique picket creatures to life.
Thumbprint Animals is one of two classes taught by Karen John. The class draws on The Great Thumbprint Book by Ed Emberley. Using each individual’s thumbprint and other fingerprints, Karen encourages children to create animals from the simple shape of a fingerprint. Adding a few simple lines completes the animal’s expressions and actions.
Karen’s second class, Upcycle Animals, strives to show young artists that expensive art supplies are not necessary to create beautiful art. Karen teaches that line, contour, shape, color, and value are essential elements to combine with discarded items including cereal, pasta, soft drink boxes, potato chip bags, and plastic grocery bags, etc…, to create a representation of an animal.
Ann Baron closes the Kid’s Summer Art Classes with an exciting class titled Making Greeting Cards. Ann acquaints her students with complementary colors, opposite colors, and blending colors to establish a foundation. After each student designs a colorful background on their greeting card, Ann introduces a variety of stamps for students to use in creating an image for the focal point.
The product is a special card with a personal touch. Each of the four artists/teachers is excited to share their artistic processes with children. Art promotes higher-order thinking skills.
“Children are innately observant and perceptive people. When we give them a space to express these characteristics, we’re also hoping to provide them with an opportunity to grow into thoughtful, caring adults,” said Ann.
As a precursor to the Kid’s Summer Art Classes, the Sanderosa Gallery is offering two events in June, exploring the concept of upcycling. In art, upcycle means combining objects normally discarded to make a piece of art.
Karen John will introduce the Upcycle Animals concept to students, challenging them to think about discarded items in their own homes that they can use to create art. Renee Walkup will teach an exceptionally intriguing class for adults, Mid-Century Modern Mosaics. Renee combines mosaic tiles with unpredictable found items to create stunning vases, trays, and musical instruments. Adults will have the opportunity to create an uncommon piece of upcycled art.
The two June classes will be offered free of charge to kick off a stimulating summer of art at the Sanderosa Art Gallery. To sign up or receive more information about any of the upcoming classes, contact the Sanderosa Art Gallery at 707 218-0211.