LAAC promotes arts through summer camp

Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 12, 2010

A rt is fun – that’s what the Lower Alabama Arts Coalition is hoping to show children this summer.

Friday ended the first week of summer art camp, which was for ages 3 to 5.

“The camp is just a fun way to bring awareness of the arts,” said Mira Walker of the LAAC.

Six preschoolers attended the camp and learned about Pablo Picasso, made self portraits and a picture frame, and a “person” from paper, foam cups, pipe cleaners, buttons and beads.

“We used Mr. Potato Head to help explain about the eyes and nose,” said Jessica Tyler who taught the camp. “We talked about Picasso’s paintings.”

Tyler, along with Marilyn Moore, taught the preschool camp.

“The theme of the camp is portraits,” Moore said. “So far, it’s gone well. We are showing them portraits in gallery.”

Moore said when the campers painted self-portraits, they only gave them the three primary colors and let them explore which primary colors make other colors.

In addition to the visual arts side, the campers were treated to music in which they played different forms of instruments including bongos, triangles, cowbell and maracas to learn more about the musical side of the arts.

They also learned “The Chicken Dance,” which Tyler said they enjoyed thoroughly.

Jessica Tucker said her son, Riley, enjoyed the camp.

“He likes music and art. His dad is a band director,” she said. “Riley just had the best time.”

Camper Ivy Rogers said crafts were her favorites.

“I thought the crafts were very fun,” she said.

Brynnleigh Palmer said, “I liked painting our people and our pictures.”

Anna Birk said she liked the whole camp, but really liked the story time.

“Oh, and I liked doing ‘the Chicken Dance,’ ” she said. “It’s been really fun.”

While the preschool camp is over, there are still spots available for ages 6 to 12 in the third session.

“We are completely full the second week,” Walker said. “We do have plenty of room the third week, which is June 21 through June 25.”

The cost for the camp is $60, and Walker said that includes all supplies.

Moore said those who attend the older children’s camp, will do a self-portrait, but it will be more of a 3D bust made out of cardboard.

“We’ll blow up a balloon and do paper mache for the older camp-goers,” she said.

“Our goal is to promote the arts,” Walker said. “We have been hosting this for six years to help the children learn about the arts and to promote their motor skills. Plus, it’s just a fun summer activity.”

Walker said the summer program is designed to acquaint the attendees with all of the arts.

“We talk to them about instruments, famous performers, painters and sculptors,” she said. “We just want to promote the awareness of both visual and performing arts.”

Walker said in addition to the visual, hands-on artwork, the campers were treated to storyteller Darlene Phillips, an opera singer, and learned about performing arts from Paula Harr.

Walker said for those who need financial assistance there may be some scholarships available. For more information, contact the center at 222-3205.

Anna Birk shows off her face for her “person project,” complete with ponytails just like hers during the LAAC’s summer camp.