We all know that being creative has a certain essence about it that makes us feel good, right?
And, by saying ‘being creative’ it doesn’t mean creating a masterpiece on a canvas that is intended for an art gallery.
So why does it feel good and seem to affect so many other areas of life?
Creativity is a human trait. We are a species born to create. From meals, to buildings, to babies, to packing a lunch box. Creativity must be fostered, it needs encouragement and room to grow whilst still having limitations to exist within.
For young people that have a higher than average exposure to creating art and the media for creating it, possess qualities that many others do not have. Exposure to art, ripples out to many other areas of learning and life.
1. EXPRESS YOURSELF
As children develop, they move from the outward stage of exploration and finding identity to one of social integration and figuring out where they fit in the world. Many experience an internalisation of their true expression as the desire to ‘fit in’ and ‘be normal’ in this hyper-stimulated world dulls their externalisation of self. By expressing oneself on a physical medium, teens find a voice that may otherwise have never been accessed. Language is only one way ideas can be expressed, all youth need to build skills in other avenues to convey what they may be struggling to express in words.
2. FINDING SELF CONTROL
We’ve all had moments where we feel like life is out of control. For teens this can be a constant state and as they try to harness control of their life. Artistic engagement stimulates the mind and when they create something, they can call it their own. Overcoming problems in other areas of life becomes easier as they regain the sense of self-determination creating something physical.
3. PROGRESS IS POSSIBLE
When we see our improvement as we refine a skill, the sense of achievement is tangible. Youth increase in confidence when their talents begin to improve, such as with drawing, building, painting and designing. When teens see progress and change in something they have persisted at, it offers a reflection, illustrating that all things can get better with time and effort.
4. INSTANT V’S DELAYED GRATIFICATION
It can be hard when we’re young to truly grasp the notion of doing something now for later benefit. Most Teens want instant gratification and an instant result that is tangible. Art offers both. Creating something positive and worthwhile is an instant and tangible result. Being able to look at a beautiful creation over time, allows them to reflect on how they were feeling when they created it. They can see how the passage of time changes things, they also see their own capacity to create something real and lasting which adds to their sense of self.
5. SKILLS FOR LIFE
Every step we take teaches us about ourselves and the world around us. When our journey is guided by the freedom and boundaries art allows it offers a platform to develop skills that will be applicable to every area of life. The process of creating art is a healthy way to develop skills in making choices and solving problems, something we are all faced with each and every day. From a simple choice of which colour to use, where to draw a line, what size to make something, each choice makes something more their own. Art goes beyond, as through the process of creation, until that point, it was only in the imagination. They have the capacity to bring something to life that previously didn’t exist.
Art Mania Studio’s Teens After School Development Program fosters not only artistic skills in the group, it also offers social, communicative and self-expression skills that will equip them for life.
WE HAVE A COUPLE OF SPOTS LEFT FOR OUR TERM 1 PROGRAM – for more details click here
Written by Jen Majenta Moon, Art Mania Team Member