I’ve heard it said somewhere before that one of the most effective ways to fuel your passion is to share it. The small craft workshops I hosted at San Juan, La Union over the weekend definitely did that. I’ve been on an arts and crafts high ever since (If you could call it that :P)!
It happened at Flotsam & Jetsam Artist Beach Hostel, a place so relaxing and inspiring, it’s very conducive to creative work and activity. I, together with another artist, Nikki Valenzuela, who is a very talented painter, put together several art workshops open to anybody interested. I, in particular, designed my workshops to be enjoyable for both children and grown ups.
My Saturday morning session was a simple and relaxed “Craft Hangout.” Participants had the freedom to make use of any of the variety of craft tools and art materials I brought, such as rubber stamps, washi tapes, paint and clay plates. Some made postcards using rubber stamps, while others decorated plates. A lot of them did both! Santino, one of the kids who joined, transformed his plate into a miniature replica of the Enterprise. Talk about resourcefulness and imagination!
The next day, on another lovely morning at the beach, kids, accompanied by their parents (some with older siblings and an aunt), came to join me for an Art Mobile Making workshop. It was really beautiful because we set up the session in the front garden under the shade of a tree, where we also had a good view of the ocean and got lots of salty sea breeze. For me, it was absolutely the perfect time and spot to get creative! I think the participants would agree!
The Art Mobile is one of my favorite projects to do with my kids because it’s easy and can be made in so many different ways that you can almost never go wrong with it. Each pair of participants got a kit of materials but I also brought many different knick knacks they could freely use to decorate their mobiles. There were dried tree branches (of course), twigs, clay ornaments (which they had fun painting) felt, fabric scraps, paint, beads and different types of ribbon. I also taught them how to make yarn pom poms and felt feathers.
I suggested many different ways for them to put their mobiles together, but it was really wonderful to see them mix and match materials and do their own thing to make theirs unique. The mobiles all turned out very different from each other, but every single one looked happy and colorful. Once they were done, we hung their beautiful mobiles up the tree for all to see.
The little crafters seemed very pleased with their work too and happily took pictures of themselves with their masterpiece. They were all smiles as they went home carrying what they made that morning.
I was all smiles too, both outside and inside. It felt really good to be able to spend time with these people, specially the children, and share with them my love for arts and crafts. I went there without having any idea who exactly will attend and how they will respond but one thing I made sure to do was have fun. I’m thankful because it really seemed like they had fun too!
I came home from that weekend inspired and fueled up to keep creating and also eager to come up with more ways to spread love for crafts. I was also very thankful to have had a vacation with the family, though briefly, and spend some time out in nature. It was baby Jo’s first beach trip and the other two girls and I, even Kayo, have been looking forward to it for months. The trip was close to a spiritual repose for me… but perhaps that’s for an entirely different post (hehe).
Let me just end with this: I never thought this hobby (arts and crafts) could be anything more than a momentary therapeutic activity or an avenue for self expression, yet it keeps surprising me. 🙂
If you’re interested in attending my craft workshops for kids, I have one coming up on March 15 called DIY: Toys. See details here.