Whether it’s comics for the kids or woodcarvings simple or elaborate, if you’re learning to pick up a new artistic skill this fall, the Aurora Cultural Centre has something for everyone in the season ahead.

This year’s education offerings from the Cultural Centre include returning favourites like ukulele workshops, as well as new programs that have been put in place thanks to feedback from participants throughout the year.

“We survey all our classes and carefully review them, and we received a lot of interest in providing culturally-diverse programs,” says Aitak Sorahitalab, Education Coordinator at the Aurora Cultural Centre.

One such program where this emphasis on diversity lies is a suite of calligraphy programs which, in addition to word art in the English language, will be expanded to Persian and Japanese, among others.

“I hope we can provide diversity in terms of art forms and in terms of cultural practice,” says Sorahitalab.

For adult programming, woodcarving courses for students aged 16+ will run from September 25 through November 6. This year’s programs will be led by the Swiss-born Arnold Koch, who has been practicing the art form for almost 50 years.

Koch picks up the chisel from long-time instructor Marlene Ash who, although she has stepped down from lead instructor, will still lend her expertise in a volunteer capacity.

“Woodcarving is a traditional art form but there can be a modern approach, too,” says Sorahitalab. “The way it is done by master carvers is very important for us.”

Expand Your Horizons in Acrylics: Level 2 begins September 26 as an eight-week program. 

Instructor Helen Walter will lead students in discovering “unlimited stylistic and expressive possibilities.” Intended for advanced artists, students will “develop creative and perceptual skills with an exploration of key principles of colour theory, underpainting, composition and perspective.”

Beginner painters will have their chance to explore acrylics through Start Painting Now with Acrylics, an eight-week program led by Francesca Pasubio, 22, who is a specialist in oil painting.

Artistic explorations will continue with another eight-week course beginning September 27 with Exploring Watercolours, a program for intermediate and advanced artists, led by instructor Kathryn Christensen.

Karen Levert will lead beginner artists 16+ in Watercolours: Basics and Beyond, beginning September 28 and running for eight weeks. 

Drawing and Sketching will be in focus for five weeks beginning November 13 led by Jan Dolby.

“Sharpen your pencils and discover the basics of drawing and sketching, including fundamental perspective rules, composition, design, and shading. Instructional handouts will guide students through their process.”

Other programs for visual artists, beginner and expert, include Photographing Nature on October 1, An Introduction to Modern Brush Calligraphy on October 15, Pointed Pen Calligraphy on November 19, Crepe Paper Flowers on November 26, Painterly Printmaking on December 3, and Relief Printmaking on December 10.

Adults will also have the chance to explore their musical sides with Ukulele for Beginners, running from September 27 – November 15, and Beginning Guitar from September 27 – November 15.

For the youth, visual arts programs begin with a PA Day Program on September 22 which is billed as “a full day of artistic adventures.”

After School programs are the order of the fall season, beginning with Comic Drawing, an eight-week program beginning September 25. Led by illustrator Jan Dolby, the program is “a series of basic lessons to help you with arranging characters, settings, and speech bubbles inside a panel, selecting the right tools for your project, exploring style and illustrating stories.”

You Can Uke It!, an eight-week after school program led by Anthony Clayton, will help youngsters “embark on their musical journey,” which they say is the “perfect starter instrument.”

“Learn all of the basics, such as chords and strum patterns through a variety of familiar songs. No previous musical experience necessary – just bring a ukulele in working order and a notebook.”

Kids will then have a chance to journey with art through time and around the world.

A Journey Through Art & Time, an eight-week program for kids aged 4 – 6, off September 30 with instructor Karen Johnston. 

“Travel to the past to discover how art has changed throughout history and be inspired to create pieces based on key artists and movements, from Picasso to Pop Art and everything in between and beyond!”

Older youth artists between the ages of 7 and 10 can enroll in Around the World with Art, another eight-week program led by Johnston focusing on the work of famous artists, their unique styles, “and how they were inspired by the world around them.”

11 – 15-year-olds will also have their chance to explore their artistic style through Famous Artists & Their Styles where Johnston will explore similar themes, but with a specific focus on still life painting, portraits, landscapes and more.”

For Sorahitalab, the possibilities are endless and if you don’t know where to start, she suggests exploring the one-day workshops to try various art forms on for size and see where interests lie.

“Try the one-day workshops that are happening on Sundays in the Fall and Winter and if you like them, you can try the longer classes,” she says. “There are different approaches to art practice, of course, and you can see what you’re interested and continue coming to us.”

For a full menu of the Aurora Cultural Centre’s fall education programs, visit auroraculturalcentre.ca. 

By Brock Weir, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Original Published on Aug 31, 2023 at 21:17

This item reprinted with permission from   The Auroran   Aurora, Ontario

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