School is in session and a chill is in the air. And that means that it’s time for fall art classes at CREATE! After a busy summer of art camp (11 weeks of nonstop art adventures!) Fall is when we reopen CREATE’s art classes and workshops, with something for artists of all ages and experience levels. 

For children, our evening and weekend classes are a great way to supplement and expand upon in-school art education, foster a new hobby and make new friends. 

Our youth and teen art classes are a cornerstone of CREATE, providing essential benefits to DC metro area children in a supportive environment. The benefits of a solid arts education are numerous and backed by years of evidence. A 2019 study from the Brookings Institute found that for school-aged children, “increases in arts learning positively and significantly affect students’ school engagement, college aspirations, and their inclinations to draw upon works of art as a means for empathizing with others.” (https://www.brookings.edu/blog/brown-center-chalkboard/2019/02/12/new-evidence-of-the-benefits-of-arts-education/) Despite such positive findings, schools are often unable to provide the type of arts education needed to achieve these results. And that’s where CREATE comes in.

This fall we are offering a new Creative Youth Development (CYD) class especially for middle schoolers. This class is designed to support students during a particularly challenging period of their lives, combining artistic expression with youth development principles, centering the voices of our students as they support each other. Facilitated by an art educator and an art therapist, CYD will provide an environment where youth will take the lead as they use art to connect, find their voices, and address the stress that comes with growing up.

In addition to Creative Youth Development, we have a wide variety of new and returning classes to engage our students no matter where their art interests take them. Programs include: Drawing & Painting for Kids; Beginner & Intermediate Drawing for Teens; Intermediate & Advanced Techniques in Art; Introduction to Pottery; Characters, Cartoons & Comic Books; Art Explorations;  Imaginary Creatures Sculpture Workshop; and, Introduction to Printmaking, which will be provide our young artists the opportunity to work on our new printing press.

When school begins in the fall, family time can be much harder to come by. Between academics, extracurriculars, and sports, parents often struggle to find meaningful opportunities to engage with their children. CREATE’s family art programs are designed for parents (or grandparents) and children to work side-by-side, engaging in the creative process together. This fall we have a variety of options.

Family Pottery, one of CREATE’s most popular classes, has begun its first session, but spaces are available for the second session later this fall. Perfect for future ceramicists or those who like to get their hands messy, our Family Pottery artists have the opportunity to build individual complementary pieces, as well as work of larger pieces together. The class emphasizes partnership skills among parents and children, in a creative and fun setting. For those who want to continue their pottery journey together, Advanced Family Pottery provides an additional opportunity for a family activity, while also building higher-level skills.

While not all families are able to commit to a 5-week class, we recognize the importance of family time through art. CREATE is offering two shorter family art programs this fall – a 2-week papermaking class and a one-session Collage Ornaments Workshop. These shorter workshops provide an excellent opportunity for a shared experience, and the chance to make handcrafted one-of-a-kind artwork. As the saying goes, it’s the quality not the quantity that counts. 

Education doesn’t stop when we grow up, and CREATE’s art classes and workshops for adults offer a wide variety of art experiences. For beginner and intermediate-level artists looking for a full class experience, we’re offering 8 weeks of Intro to Drawing, Intermediate Drawing, Introduction to Printmaking (like our youth class, this class will also have the opportunity to work on our printing press), Beginner Watercolor, and Still Life Painting. In addition to our 8-week classes, we’re excited to offer a 2-session Ceramic Leaf Platter workshop, which celebrates the beauty of autumn leaves, and a one-day Paint Your Pet workshop that will provide all participants the chance to brag about how YOUR pet is the cutest, smartest, furriest, etc., and go home with a one-of-a-kind portrait of your amazing animal!

As you can see from the above, CREATE has something to offer for everyone! Whether you’re ready to learn a new skill or build upon an old one, fall is the perfect time to start or continue your artistic journey.