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Over 50 enthusiastic artists, ages 7 to 15, spent Wednesdays mornings at The Studios of Key West to participate in Painting Boot Camp Kids. With such a great response, interest, and often a waiting list, TSKW is looking into expanding its summer programs next year to give more kids a chance to learn from Key West’s local artists. The kids went home each week with an original work created under the direction of local, professional artist Rick Worth. Painting a paradise of palm trees, a colorful beach umbrella, a two-story conch house, and three lively chickens on a fence, these kids truly captured the paradise they are growing up in.
Many participants took pride in their paint shirt, wearing the same one each week to look more like Worth, who doesn’t hesitate to wipe his brush on his clothing. Parents weren’t allowed into the hall during the 2 hours, creating a truly camp, intensive feeling without the stress of spending all day away.
The kids’ attentiveness was amazing, and the paintings are a testament to their quiet concentration. Friendships still emerged before each class with the nerves and excitement building as everyone found a seat. Each kid was given the primary colors, and various brushes to follow Worth’s careful instructions. They learned technique and self-expression because they were encouraged to buckle down, listen, and explore what color can do. Smiles during and chatty excitement afterwards kept repeat participants looking forward to Wednesdays with new scenes to paint and lessons to learn.
The group picture taken at the end of every class and emailed to parents bursts with the personalities of these budding artists. The kids are sure to take their desire to create home and will hopefully keep their quiet concentration for mom or dad. Thanks to the support of parents and the enthusiasm of Rick Worth, Painting Book Camp Kids was an all-around success!
Photo Credit: Elizabeth King, TSKW intern