30 January 2013

Abrakadoodle Art Classes for Children

Kids on Canvas Art Camp - October 2012

Founded in 2002 in the United States by two education and franchise experts, Abrakadoodle to date has been the winner of 7 Nickelodeon First Place Awards for “Best Art Class to Bring Out Your Child’s Inner Picasso”.

A comprehensive art education international franchise with locations in US, Singapore, Malaysia, Japan and China, Abrakadoodle’s art classes are for children from 20 months to 12 years. The programs are designed with the process of creating art rather than the outcome of the art, whilst the curriculum was developed by artists and educators with focus on developing right brain competencies. 

The same classes are never repeated, giving the child new and exciting projects to look forward to. My daughter relishes telling me each week that she doesn’t know what she will be doing in art class. It is like a weekly dose of surprises.

Only one hour long, once a week, the projects are designed to be completed in one sitting, keeping the excitement and momentum going, whilst providing the child with satisfaction of going home with a finished product. The last 15 minutes of class is dedicated to gallery time when each child talks about their art work before an audience who are generally the students’ parents.

Along with regular weekly classes, Abrakadoodle runs art camps usually during school holidays.  Trini has successfully and with much pleasure completed 3 art camps.  Each one had its own theme, run over 3 days for 3 hours per day.  At the end of each camp, Trini produced 6 pieces of art which are completely original.  By far my favorites are the work from her Kids on Canvas camps where she learned about painting on canvas using acrylics.  In Abrakadoodle's words: "Children use their imaginations in creating artwork based upon the techniques, style and vocabulary of master or contemporary artists from different parts of the world!" Too true.

Such artists include: Pierre Renoir, Piet Mondrian, Laurel Burch, Amedeo Modigliani, RenĂ© Magritte, Andy Warhol, Mort Solberg, Jane Freilicher, Roy Lichtenstein, Natasha Westcoat, Johannes Vermeer and Yin Lum.  Each accomplished artist imparts an artistic style or technique such as: Renoir is synonymous with Impressionism, Magritte with Surrealism, Lichtenstein with Pop Art and Vermeer was a Provincial painter known for the Girl with a Pearl Earring painting.  Yin Lum is a contemporary abstract artist hailing from Singapore, whilst Mort Solberg is an American artist with an affinity for American Indian history and culture.

Trini has been part of Abrakadoodle for about seven months and I remember her first piece of work which was using sponging and layering techniques to produce Peek-a-Boo.

A few months later Trini experienced her first Kids on Canvas camp and below is my favorite being Trini's interpretation of Rene Magritte's well known Son of Man painting which consists of a faceless man with a bowler hat.

The following week Trini concluded Abrakadoodle's Beach Camp where their art work had a beach theme using various mediums such as paper, sand, clay and screenprinting.

The students' collective work. 
The Sea Shell designs are my favourite.
After a couple of months abroad, Trini kicked off the new year with another Kids on Canvas camp and resumed her regular weekly classes.  More fun ensued and here's her most recent works.

Inspired by Jane Freilicher

Inspired by Mort Solberg

Inspired by Roy Lichtenstein

I don't know how much theory Trini takes in but I know that she is having loads of fun.  I suspect over time, everything she learns and is exposed to will slowly start making sense.  I most certainly notice her work getting more creative, the art more defined (less blobs) to the viewer and her colour combinations (which often reflect pink and purple) are aesthetically pleasing.

My objective as her mum is to delight her with creative opportunities, give her art related outlets to express her imagination and essentially let her dream a beautiful world for as long as possible.  As Pablo Picasso once said:

Every child is an artist.
The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.