Youth Explore Art with Project YAC

The Youth Arts Collaborative (Project YAC) was a collaborative effort between Lawrence-Douglas County Housing Authority’s Full Circle Youth Program, several local organizations and local artists to bring new and exciting art-related activities to youth participating in the Full Circle Youth Program. Funded in 2013 by a generous grant from the Lawrence Community Arts Commission, Project YAC provided youth with opportunities in photography, drama/theater and painting.

Project YAC supported the continuation of the Full Circle Youth Program’s Creative Arts Workshop. This is a weekly program allowing youth to express themselves through several different art mediums including games, drama and creative projects.

The photography component included a tour of the Spencer Museum of Art print room and discussion of different types of and reasons for photography with Spencer Museum of Art staff. Students were given digital cameras and guidance on mastering different photography techniques from local photographer, Kelsey Hunter. At the conclusion of the program, students were allowed to keep the digital cameras for continued use. Field trips to places such as the Museum of Natural History gave students an opportunity to practice their new talents in interesting environments. Discussions also included use of lighting, camera angles and distance to provide different perspectives through photography.

The theater component of the program included collaboration with Theatre Lawrence. Youth received a tour of the recently built Theatre Lawrence facility and participated in out-of-school theater programming as well as theater camps at the Full Circle Youth Program facility. Participants read and practiced several short plays and skits, producing a recorded podcast of the classic Abbott and Costello skit, “Who’s on First”.

The painting component included a collaborative piece where youth painted their representation of the four seasons. Over 20 youth participated in the preparation and creation of the projects. Six youth that were most involved in the project received art kits to continue creating works of art at home.

Tagged: mentoring, education, art, Youth

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