Tag Archives: art for children

Olympic Greetings

5 Aug

The event of the year, inarguably, London 2012, started in Camden on July 26th . Everyone was expecting a big buzz around the streets of Chalk Farm and Camden Town, and rightly so. The torch was to arrive in its historic glory passing the eternal flame before a final stretch through the capital’s landmarks, anticipated by millions.

This saw Camden as the welcoming host for the London Olympic torch, and its streets were filled with hundreds of spectators, lined up along the sidewalks, climbed up on shop rooftops, filling glasses with champagne, from as early as seven in the morning to get a glimpse of the kiss between the two torches and take part in this fascinating happening.

To reflect on these exciting local events and show a true warm welcome to everyone in Camden, we spent a few days preparing an exciting window display – we made our own torches from craft paper, and let the sun beams light up their flames through colourful transparent paper. Then we surrounded them with dozens of green leaves, which, as if floating in the air, hung on thin silver strings to shape a beautiful frame. 

Even more intricate and time-consuming though was our following window display project, which replicated the symbolic Olympic rings, or, in our case – Olympic wreaths. Made from hundreds of pieces of recycled brown paper, each cut by hand, folded, drawn on and glued to a base of cardboard.

It took about three days to finish the five wreaths, and, in time for the start of the Olympics, there they were, magnets for the photo lenses of tourists and locals alike.

We couldn’t think of a place warmer and more welcoming than Camden to start the torch’s journey through London and we were very excited to be a part of it.

Our Olympic wreaths will stay for a while to cheer neighbours and new Camden visitors, so swing by our shop soon if you’d like to feel the Olympic spirit of Camden and catch a glimpse of them yourself.

Big helpers for tiny hands

25 Jun

These have been our young artists’ favourite tools recently. For a couple of weeks we left several samples of Da Vinci’s brushes for children on a table top at the shop and we encouraged the curious to try them out. It didn’t take long before all the kids were trying on the finger brushes to find the one that fitted best. The paints on the side would then be damped and colours quickly spread around as drawings, signatures and messages.

The experience is close to painting with fingers, highly tactile, but it also introduces basic brush techniques. That makes finger brushes great for learning how to paint from an early stage.

Later, the exciting challenge is getting used to holding a brush in a tight but comfortable way that will let the child explore and enjoy painting more. But just like pens and pencils, brushes too can be shorter, to assist a small hand. And less round, to avoid too much rolling away – it takes a tight grasp in order to respond to a young creative mind’s artistic adventures!

There are some purely technical advantages as well – the length and fibre of these brushes allow just the right amount of water to carry, as children, often driven by their high creative enthusiasm, tend to take up too much paint or water. The handle is flat on one side and it secures the grip. This makes it useful not only for children but also for anyone who might be having difficulties with finger-coordination.

 

Touch, the sense of the skin and particularly the hand, is not purely tactile, just as painting is never purely a visual experience. When exploring an unknown area, we tend to focus on the senses we need to acquire certain skills for with. But, with an interplay of the senses, in this case visual supplemented by tactile, a strong mental image is composed and it reflects the experience back on a whole new level.