Monday, April 9, 2018

Spring Break ART Camp

Despite the heavy snowfall, we dried out and warmed up with a southwestern art curriculum this past week for Spring Break ART Camp.

On Tuesday, we learned to identify cumulus, cirrus and stratus clouds, practiced painting cumulus clouds of our own and created our own hanging cloud sculptures.

On our museum visit on Wednesday, we identified cloud types in many landscape and seascape paintings on our way to view Cloud World by Maynard Dixon as well as other southwestern landscapes.

We painted our own southwestern landscapes using acrylic and watercolor.

On Thursday, our subject was the Saguaro cactus tree.  We incorporated this subject into a landscape which we embroidered.

The snow was fun too!

There are two classes on Sunday afternoons in April that still have seats!
Yellow Umbrella, Sunday, April 15, 2:30 - 5:30
Reduce, Reuse and Recycle, Sunday, April 22, 2:30 - 5:30
See THIS LINK and scroll down for more information.

Watch for SUMMER CAMP paperwork to be sent out this coming Friday, April 13.
Camp paperwork and deposits are due April 27.

I have room for one more pair during the Mother's Day workshop during the 10:30 and 2:15 time slots.

For those of you who missed Summer Camp enrollment this year,
consider the Learning to Bee workshop on Wednesday, June 13.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

2018 Summer ART Camps

Summer Camp Session 1: 
MY VIEW MATTERS (photography inspired)
June 18 - 22
Referencing each student's personal photographs, we will create drawings, paintings, collage and mixed media pieces.  At the Museum Institute of Art (Mia), we will study Minnesota photographer, Alex Soth and Minnesota artist, Frank Big Bear.
Please note that a prerequisite class is scheduled for Sunday, June 3.  If your child cannot attend June 3, I am happy to send a photo checklist so that your child can attend Session 1.

Sunday, June 3, 2:30 - 5  (prerequisite class to Session 1 camp)

A lesson on some photography basics: depth of field, light and the rule of thirds.
A walking field trip throughout the classroom's surrounding neighborhood (Whittier in Minneapolis) taking 27 photos while using a disposable camera (provided). This class also includes snack and photo development. $30 for students enrolled in Session 1

classroom work

Summer Camp Session 2:
CLAY CAMP (air dry)
July 16 - 20
Explore and learn to manipulate five different types of air dry clay while creating a hanging mobile, a small insect, a colorful rock stack sculpture (inspired by Rondinone's installation, Seven Magic Mountains), a hanging tile and more.  In addition to visiting all the small ceramic animal forms that are always so popular at Mia, we will be studying Ruth Duckworth's ceramic mural and the small housing models from Vietnam.

museum visits

Summer Camp Session 3:
July 30 - August 3
Create an assemblage piece with found and natural objects, arrange a nail pattern on wood block, participate in a cooperative building project: a small city of cardboard buildings. Build a simple house structure with paper and popsicle sticks.   Our visits to Mia will involve studying Minnesota artist, George Morrison and the Japanese Tea House

outdoor play

Summer Camp Session 4:
August 20 - 24
Based on the book, Wishtree, written by Katherine Applegate and published in September of 2017, this chapter book is the perfect combination of good humor (guaranteed laugh out loud moments) as well as an introduction of new vocabulary and important facts.  Wishtree discusses the value and complications of relationships, exclusion and how the power of history and storytelling can heal.  This book is warm and fuzzy without denying the realities of real life struggle while simultaneously sharing proverbs for living.

We will begin reading every morning at 8:45 am.  The content (an average of five, short chapters a day) will determine our drawings or paintings created to correspond with each day.  Our Mia visits will consist of everything from the Money Tree (first century China) to Van Gogh's Olive Trees.

The fine print: There is one word that is used twice in this book that I have strong feelings about.  This word is "mailman".  I will not alter the text when reading, however, I will stop and explain that I think the author/editor should have chosen the words "mail carrier" instead.

Summer Camps are Monday through Friday, 8:30 - 1

children ages 4 - 10+ years

we visit the Minneapolis Institute of Arts with sketchbooks (provided) 
on two different days during each session

Please pack a mid morning snack and a sack lunch

each session has a 10 student limit

each camp session: $250 

To inquire or reserve your child's seat, 
please email Kari at

A reservation for summer ART camp sessions are made on good faith
Camp paperwork and non-refundable deposits ($125 towards camp tuition)
 will be due April 27, 2018

To view videos from 2017 Summer ART Camps, see THIS LINK

To follow us on facebook, see The Create Everyday Classroom

Find us  @thecreateeverydayclassroom on instagram

For SPRING weekend classes view THIS LINK

Click HERE for SUMMER workshops 

Measuring a successful summer camp.  My checklist.

Monday, March 19, 2018

cityscapes // the minneapolis skyline

a perfect view of the Minneapolis skyline on the third floor of Mia

When we could clearly view the Minneapolis skyline at Mia, we discussed a variety of ways to approaching our sketching.  It was amazing to me that each student had a clear picture of how they were going to proceed after this discussion (see image below).  Not pictured was a student who used one page to represent each of the most dominant buildings.

sketches completed at Mia

After a meandering walk back to the classroom and removing our wet shoes and boots (more about this later), we spent time looking at different variations of artists' cityscapes.  Students chose the style that spoke to them the most.

With our sketches from Mia and, while keeping our preference style in mind, students began sketching their skylines on canvas with soft pastels.

sketching on canvas

We painted in three different stages, waiting for each section to dry, taking breaks in between with the other materials available in the classroom.  During our mid-class snack break, we read the book This is New York written and illustrated by Miroslav Sasek.

I love the individuality expressed in all of these pieces.

Thank you, Parents, for dropping your children directly at Mia for the start of class.  Eliminating our walk there freed up some extra time for our walk back.  The irresistible "snow mountain" on the MCAD campus.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

art classes for children

nurturing the spirit of the child through creativity

adrian meg photography

an open-ended, engaging, intuitive art making experience
 for children ages 4 -10+ years

josh kohanek photography

I offer a unique art making experience where the focus is placed on the process of art making and the exploration of materials. My students experience a limitless opportunity for intuitive and spontaneous self expression.

Art classes are unlimited regarding subject or topic of study.  
Class sizes are small and intimate.  
Students have the opportunity and freedom 
to work with and explore materials.

interested in a Create Everyday birthday party?  click here

for further questions or to register:

Kari is a practicing, professional visual artist as well as a creativity coach and consultant.  She was a Montessori Children's House educator for over thirteen years.  Encouraging and supporting the creative process for people of all ages is one of her absolute favorite things.    

For more information visit

view 200+ photographs of the children's work here

follow The Create Everyday Classroom on instagram and facebook

Monday, December 4, 2017

sketching at the Minneapolis Institute of Art

Sometimes, I think, the children's sketchbooks are their most important work. Even though, by the time they go home, the children usually can't remember what sight or thought was the catalyst for which mark, shape or scribble.

This student has filled a handful of sketchbooks in my classes. There have been many pages that have gone home empty too. Somehow, without any inhibition, though, this (not quite) six year old captured movement. Just like that. There is also something else about these sketches that amaze me. This very young person already understands a certain benefit of creating several sketches on the same sight (or idea). AND this young person was obviously quite comfortable continuing an idea across the course of a sketchbook binding and consuming both pages.   WOW.

Friday, September 22, 2017

beautiful oops

Our warm up consisted of mark making using five different drawing mediums (copic markers, crayons, charcoal, oil pastels and colored pencils) on paper.  Ideas for mark making (see my notes posted below) were written on the chalkboard.  Students chose one form of mark making to use with each medium, creating a white page full of "random" mediums and marks.

We used the turn your paper, draw over and paint over techniques with our second activity.  Students used one medium (black watercolor crayons) to create an initial drawing of their own choice.  After completing our drawings, we all turned our papers in different directions, trying to "see" how we might transform these initial drawings into something else.  The children chose one color of soft pastel to draw over in addition to white paint, eliminating part of the initial drawing that was no longer necessary.  Some of the students continued to paint, adding color, once the white paint had dried.

Our third activity consisted of ripping up our warm up paper with all of our mark making on it, finding one piece that spoke to us and incorporating it into another collage/drawing.

Our fourth activity was a far stretch from beautiful oops but I knew the students would have so much fun with this (and it did involve folding ?).  
I still heard exclaimations like, "Look! I created a beautiful oops here." while working on their "Roooooooooooaaaaar" pieces.

 Beautiful Oops  written and illustrated by Barney Saltzberg

If you are not familiar with this book, I  highly recommend THIS VIDEO (under one minute thirty seconds)

Some of the students have been begging me for outside time during our Sunday classes in order to use the sidewalk chalk.  We took 15 minutes outside yesterday towards the end of class.  One student spontaneously demonstrated the concept of beautiful oops.  

We'll see some of you for our annual Glamdoll Donuts class on Saturday, December 16 from 1 - 5
or for Watership Down character drawing and story boards, December 17 from 1:30 - 4:30

I still have seats available during the December 26 - 29 winter camp.  Pick and choose days for $65 or choose four days for $200.  The January 2 - 5 winter camp is full.  

So far, in the very short history of winter camps at The Create Everyday Classroom, we have started a tradition where we read what have been noted as the best children's books of the year.  Often we create work inspired by these books.  Here are some examples from previous camps:

student drawing inspired by the book, Flashlight written and illustrated by Lizi Boyd

sea scapes, relief art inspired by the book Float, illustrated by Daniel Miyates

mixed media work inspired by the book Fox's Garden illustrated by Princesse Camcam

Thursday, September 21, 2017

a beautiful testimonial

This student (an eleven year old at the time) wrote about her experience while enrolled in private art lessons at the Create Everyday Classroom.  I cannot think of a better testimonial.

The door clicks shut behind me, blocking out a gentle swirl of snow. Art lines the wall, watercolor, drawings, collages. I step into the small room and look around. Calm music plays and small candles illuminate the colorful, painted tablecloth. Pieces of artwork are hung up on the wall, and three tables are set up around the room. An eager Ms.Kari greets us with a smile on her face and an apron around her neck. I hug my dad goodbye, and hang my coat on a hook attached to the door.
  ”So today instead of a blind contour, i'm thinking we could do a different warm up.” Ms.Kari says. I nod, knowing that whatever Ms.Kari has in store for me, it will be great! I have been coming to Ms.Kari’s art class for a while, and a blind contour is one of my favorite warm ups. A blind contour is when I pick a portrait from a book Ms.Kari has, and look only at the portrait not at what i’m drawing as I copy the lines onto another piece of paper. The object of this is to slow down your eyes, and hand as they follow the lines. Even though I love blind contours, I am excited to try a new warm up.
   I am slightly puzzled when Ms.Kari sets down five rather small pieces of canvas and paper. Each one is unique, one has been painted red, some are rough, some darker in color. Then she pulls out a big, thick book with a beautiful painting on the front.
  "I love the painting on the cover." I say, running my fingers along the brushstrokes.
  "I know isn't it great!" Ms.Kari replies enthusiastically. "You can look through this book, and mark the paintings you like" she tells me, handing me some light green sticky notes."I am going to give you five minutes" she says, as I begin to flip through the pages. I mark a page with a girls face, one of an old man with a long beard, another of a woman that has been painted with bold brush strokes. I have marked four pages when the timer goes off.
   "I didn't get five yet" I explain looking up from the book.
   "It's okay" she reassures me "we'll just use the ones you have".
  After lots of anticipation, she finally explains what the warm up will be. "You are going to draw one of these portraits, but I am only going to give you two minutes." I look at her, a giant smile on my face, exited for the new challenge. "Which portrait do you want to use first?" Ms.Kari asks me. I go with the first one I marked, a pretty little girl dressed in finery. "Which paper do you want to use first?" she asks. I pause for a moment, considering this. I end up choosing a light tan colored paper, with a rough texture.
   "May I start?"I ask.
   "Yes, go ahead." Ms,Kari answers. I start with the girls head. I follow the bumps on her hair, do the hair line, the eyes, nose, mouth. All the while going fairly fast. The timer goes of, and I stop, taking a minute to look at how my picture turned out. You can tell it is done fast but with detail in some places.
   "Wow" she breathes from behind me.
   "I like it" I say, setting it aside so I will have room to make more. I make four more, choosing one last painting to copy for the last one, and set them all in front of me. Some are unfinished. One is missing eyes, another is missing a mouth, but they all look great despite the fact that they were rushed.
   "I love them" she says "now I am going to have you paint one with the techniques we've been practicing.
   "Okay" I answer.
   "Remember don't overthink it, just paint."she reminds me as she squirts paint onto a paper plate. "Now which drawing do you want to paint?" she asks me. I take a minute to look at my drawings. Each one is unique. They are all a wonderful piece of art in their own way, which makes my desicion a hard one. Yet one catches my eye. It has no eyes, but their is something about it that I just love.
   "That one" I say pointing to it.
   "Okay go ahead" Ms.Kari tells me, setting the drawing in front of me. I pick up a rather small paintbrush, and dip it in a light tan. Taking a deep breath, I blot the page with color. Adding pink to the cheeks, and white to the forehead, and nose where the light is reflecting off. My brush is a blur as it mixes colors, strokes the page, and adds life to the page.Soon the face is done. With uneven skin tones, ands splotchy skin, the person is coming out of the paper. "Oh Paige, look at that" she exclaims, holding up my painting for me to see. I beam at it proud of my achievement. "Are you ready to work on the painting of you, and your grandpa?" I nod, eager to use the skills I'd just learned. I had been working on a picture of me, and my grandpa for weeks. Today I am going to work on painting my grandpa. Ms.Kari squirts more paint onto the paper plate. I watch as the thick acrylic paint oozes out of the bottle. Ms.Kari sets my painting and a few brushes in front of me. I select a small flat brush, and dip it in paint. I mix colors till I get a nice skin color. I cover most of my grandpas face with this, and then add color to the cheeks with red, and pink. "Why don't you add some white to the forehead, and chin" she instructs me. I obey, dipping my brush in white, and dabbing some on the forehead, then chin. "All right" Ms.Kari continues "now let's make some brown to use for your grandpas hair, instead of using the dried out brown paint.
   "Okay, how will I make brown? I ask.
   "Mix together red, and green." she answers. I dip my brush in red, then green, and swirl them around on the paper plate till I have a nice brown. Then I take my brush out of the brown, and start to paint my grandpas hair. I run my brush along the hairline, and fill in the rest of the hair with long smooth brush strokes.Ms.Kari was quietly observing me while I did this, and when when I finished she said "now, can you make some of your features more distinct since you have that dark color on your brush." I do so, outlining the nose, a little around the mouth, and an outline of the eyes. Once that is done, I blend the brown into the face to make it look more natural a technique Ms.Kari had taught me in a previous class. "Okay, add light to the bridge of the nose." Ms.Kari instructs, right as my dad walks into the room. I stand up, my paintbrush still clutched in my hand.
   "Hi!" I say, setting my paintbrush down, and starting to untie my apron. My dad walks over and peers down at my painting.
   "That's really good Paige's" he compliments me. I blush, proud of my painting, even though it was unfinished.Ms.Kari holds up my painting for me to look at one last time before she put it away. I beam at it, and just before she puts it away I thought I saw my grandpa smile right back.
   Now I realize how much Ms.Kari has inspired me. She taught me how to not be critical of my work, a very valuable lesson that I will hold on to for a long time. She taught me all these techniques that I will continuously use. She unleashed the artist in me.  

- Paige Yanny