Welcome to our first blog in the series of our Camp Focuses! Every year we have countless emails and phone calls and in-person questions from parents wanting to understand our summer camps and how they work a little bit better.
Don’t get us wrong, we love the questions (keep ‘em coming), and we love that you care to know more about what your child will be doing when you sign them up to hang with us over the summer; we just want to make that information more easily accessible to you.
We often discuss these types of questions and information on our social media (such as our Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter), but we thought it might be nice to round up all our wisdom nuggets and put them all together in helpful (and easily shareable) blog posts.
Camp Focus: Mixed Media
It’s appropriate that we begin this series with our most inquired-about camp, Mixed Media. In fact, “What is Mixed Media?” even made our Frequently Asked Summer Camp Questions list because we hear it so often (so if you were looking at this blog post thinking, “but just what IS mixed media?” – take comfort; you’re in good company).
Let’s break it down:
What is “Media” in art?
Media is a word we hear almost every day in our adult lives and usually we associate it with the mass communication and all the ways that communication reaches us (TV, radio, publishing, the internet, social platforms etc.).
However, when we’re discussing art, we obviously do not mean mass communication sources.
Media is the plural form of medium, which, in art, has two different, although overlapping, meanings:
So while sculpture and painting are considered to be different art mediums or media, if we were to create a sculpture out of wire, we could say the sculpture was done in the medium of wire, or if we were to create a painting, it could be done in the medium of watercolor or, perhaps, oil.
Mixed Media, then, can refer to both the mixing of the types of art (sculpture and painting together, for example) or the mixing of the materials to create a work of art, such as a drawing that features charcoal, chalk pastel, and gouache paint.
The Benefits of Working in Mixed Media:
Mixed Media is a great opportunity to experience multiple art materials and processes all at once, and in our Mixed Media summer camps, we encourage students to try out as many mediums as possible in fun and creative ways.
The challenge of using multiple mediums utilizes campers’ creative problem-solving skills and exposes them to many art materials, often ones not traditionally found in the classroom.
While campers break the boundaries of traditional art applications, they also have to pay special attention to the function of each material to ensure that it will work with the introduction of other mediums.
What Does Mixed Media Look Like?
Mixed Media is, admittedly, a vague term, but it has to be to cover SO MANY possible outcomes. The possible projects are incredibly varied, as you can see from the different versions of "still life" projects above. Mixed Media sounds great, but what exactly does it mean in a summer camp art project sense?
In the past, students have combined watercolor and gouache paints on multiple surfaces, made sculptures out of everything from air-dry clay to cut paper, created collages out of found items, and experimented with fibers and fabric dying.
One of our favorite past projects was our marbled paper portraits. Students used shaving cream and food dye to marble Bristol paper. Next, using acrylic paint, students drew and painted their faces onto the paper. The result was a fun portrait with a colorful marbled background.
While our projects for camps change so often we couldn’t tell you EXACTLY what your child will be doing in our camps this year, we can show you other examples of Mixed Media Camp projects that have been done in the past that may give you a better of idea of what type of work they might be doing in our Mixed Media project art gallery here.
Do you still have questions over our Mixed Media Camps, or anything else we talked about in this blog? We want your questions! Leave us a comment or email us at MuseoArtAcademy@live.com.
And don't forget to check out all of our Summer Camp options and save your child's spot before they fill up!
Sharing our love of art education, one post at a time.