The importance of creativity has become severely under valued in our society.
When I was young; our small school had an entire room filled to the rafters with art supplies.
Creating was a major part of our education. I remember being tasked with tidying up this room and even then was in awe of the enormity of what was being held in that space. The possibilities and joy that was held in the stacks of colored crepe papers, bottles of paint and rolls of kraft paper made me a little giddy to be honest. That room was magical to me.
You may be hard pressed to find a room dedicated to art supplies in any school these days. Especially in lower funded communities. But these are the very places there SHOULD be more art and creative opportunity!
Creating in any capacity; whether it's cooking, baking, painting, singing, dancing, gardening or knitting is essential in the human experience.
Creating something from nothing brings a sense of accomplishment AND the act of creating has elements that are essential to brain function as well as fine motor function.
Children who are encouraged to create without judgement of the final product are confident, they trust themselves. This spills over into decision making skills. They also have heightened fine motor skills; we take for granted the ability to open a paint bottle, use scissors properly and draw a line. These are very important skills that need nurturing.
The ability for creating to ease depression, anxiety and panic is undeniable and underappreciated.
Children who daydream, doodle and lose themselves in the creative process have so much to offer our world. They are curious, connected and compassionate.
So, why art?
Because art is the salve that heals and giving our children and ourselves the opportunity to create on a regular basis is the greatest gift we can give.
You know when you have an idea and you just HAVE to do it?
That's how Purple Sun Art Studio started.
I had been painting and creating for myself for a number of years. It was something that really helped me to heal from past traumas and taught me much about who I was and who I wanted to be in the world.
I wondered if maybe it would be a good thing for others to experience as well.
I wasn't sure the idea would even work. I kept it simple. Transformed the pool table into a work station by plopping a piece of plywood on top and covering it with plastic.
I gathered all the pencil crayons and markers that I'd been saving from when my kids were younger. Added some paint, glitter and paper and started advertising classes.
And here we are. Still going today. Better than ever!
I've recently seen pictures of how the space looked for the first few years and I honestly cannot believe anyone would've enjoyed being in that space. It was dark (I didn't have proper lighting and the walls were painted a dark red). The carpet was old and as much as I tried to organize all of the supplies, it still looked chaotic.
But every time someone came to create and every time there was a class we would have so much fun! We dripped and splattered paint on the walls. Sprinkled glitter on almost every piece of artwork created. There was music and dancing and laughter. There still is.
Some things have changed over the past year. Better lighting (woohoo!!!), new floors and a better system for organizing supplies. The rest is the same though; the same amount of fun, music, dancing and laughter. The same safe space to create and express yourself in your unique way.
Following my heart and creating this sweet little studio has definitely been one of the best decisions I've made.