Mini Moviemakers: Stop Motion Animation Workshops – Coming up on February 8th!

Calling all movie-makers! In this afternoon workshop, we’ll work together to make a short claymation movie in the style of Wallace and Gromit. You’ll learn about how animation works and then get to view your group movie on the web once it’s published. Ideal for ages 6+.

$16/members, $22/visitors. This is a drop-off program. To register call 828-1234 x231 or stop by the front desk.

Next workshop on February 8th: sign up here!

Beeswax Candles are good for all of us!

What’s the difference between 100% natural beeswax candles and “regular” candles? Paraffin candles, the most common type available, are made from petroleum, the same crude oil that is refined to make the fuel for our cars, lawn mowers, and airplanes. When you burn a paraffin candle, you release some of the same compounds found in auto exhaust, which can be risky and cause soot stains if you’re not burning the candle in a well-ventilated area. Beeswax candles burn cleanly and smell naturally delicious. They also burn a long time for their size, and give off a bright yellow light reminiscent of sunlight. Best of all, beeswax is a renewable resource… the bees can always make more! For Honey Time this spring, we’re offering a candle-making workshop suitable for the youngest kids: Candles made from beeswaxrolled beeswax candles. Using sheets of pressed beeswax, kids can create colorful candles, perfect for gifts!  During the workshop we’ll also learn about how bees live and build their hives. It’s a great treat for those who are excited for the upcoming production of Winnie the Pooh. I hope to see you there!

Creative Kids and Recycled Robots

What do trash robots, snake sculptures and shaving cream paper marbling all have in common? Besides being super fun, they are all educational (and messy) projects from last week’s camp, Creative Kids!

We delved into art making on Monday and didn’t stop! Friday marked the conclusion, in which our camp room turned into an art gallery. We invited all our friends and families to show off our impressive work.

What were we so busy doing, anyway? Between silly games such as acting like a certain color and trips to our neighbors, the Portland Museum of Art, campers learned about different styles of lines through the theme of ‘snakes.’ We tried sculpture, printmaking and drawing to explore straight, zigzag and curvy lines that real snakes would be shaped like or how they’d move. Our most involved piece of the week was the snake sculpture we worked on a little bit EVERY day. We first made the shape with tinfoil, and then covered it with plaster strips (the same kind used when you get a cast for a broken bone at the hospital!). Once they were dry we used masking tape to tape off lines so our stripes would be  nice and neat. We gessoed them as a final touch, so now they are super shiny like real snakes.

Another project we’re proud of is named Auto. He’s our giant trash robot! Take a look in the SmartArt exhibit and you’ll notice this friendly creature created all out of trash. It’s amazing what a little silver paint can do! Be on the look out this fall for my “Recycled Robots” program, where you’ll have a chance to make your own version and add it to our exhibit.

The campers are gone but the art lives on. If you enjoyed camp this summer, or haven’t had a chance to yet, there are still a few openings for Amazing Animal Journeys camp with Hannah. Check in at the front desk!

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Recommended reading and inspiration for our colorful snakes: Verdi, by Janell Cannon (creator of Stellaluna).
Our favorite way of learning about lines: The Adventures of Harold and the Purple Crayon. Written and illustrated by Crockett Johnson