Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Art Beat

By the Tuesday after Christmas, all our relatives were gone and Gordy was back at work.  There were a few scheduled playdates and a hockey tournament game or two, but by Thursday, we were looking for an activity to keep away the dulldrums.  I wanted to try something new and I had heard about an art studio for children that was located in a nearby town.  It was also close to a movie theatre, so I figured if the art studio wasn't so much fun, we could always go next door and watch a matinee.  

It is always wise to have a back-up plan.

The art studio was much smaller than I had imagined it.  Most of the store is taken up by a retail area with art supplies and kits.  There were probably 15 seats in the back of the store and most of them were filled with budding artists.  The proprietor showed us to a table and helped the kids pick out their craft projects.  The options included painting a paper mache animal, painting a printed canvas, making (decorating) candles, sand art and decoupage.    

My children took their time choosing their projects.

Henry chose a paper-mache penquin, Josie chose a paper-mache cow and Georgia chose to make/decorate a honey-comb candle.

The shop-keeper brought out the supplies and allowed the children to pick their colors.  She showed Georgia how to get started with the candle and put smocks on Josie and Henry.

We've been to these types of Paint-Your-Own places before and there is usually a great deal of mess involved.  This art studio kept mess at a minimum by only allowing the painting child a small amount of each chosen color and two brushes.  

The process was clean and civilized, but the cleanliness came at a price:  the poor studio assistant had to run back and forth between the tables, squeezing another small dab of paint on each child's palatte each time the paint ran out.  Which was quite frequently, considering the size of the paper-mache animals.

Georgia, meanwhile, had finished rolling up her candle and now needed assistance in the decoration:

The assistant had to stop helping the decoupaging girls behind us to give Georgia a quick lesson in stamping shapes out of honeycomb wax.

The poor woman seemed overworked and exhausted.  It seemed like a big responsibility to monitor 16 seats filled with 16 children and helping with all 16 art projects.  I began to worry that they weren't paying her enough.  

That's when an argument broke out between a mother and child behind us and all work was suspended while we watched the situation Grow Testy.

Who would have thought that an afternoon at the art studio could be so exciting?

The Children Elliot enjoyed watching the confrontation.  And they enjoyed painting and candle-making.  We did end up going next door to a movie, but only because the projects took less time than I had thought and I was eager to see what would happen when Matt Damon bought a zoo.  It was a fabulous movie, if you are wondering!


A.E. said...

Such a cute cow!

Martha said...

Josie says Thank You! (I thought it was pretty cute, too)!

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