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Canton Museum of Art launches virtual School of Art programming

Patricia Faulhaber
Suburbanite correspondent

CANTON  It has virtually become a virtual world these days. With so many programs, companies, fundraisers, classes, museums and more continuing to serve the public in creative ways and means, virtual has become the newest model for connecting.

The Canton Museum of Art (CMA) quickly realized that to serve its public in an effective way, it also had to adopt the virtual platform. The latest offerings come from the Museum’s School of Art classes and programming.

“In a normal year, the CMA offers 150 classes and workshops throughout the year,” said Education Director Erica Emerson. “We still wanted to offer classes and workshops and we developed 20 classes to put online. All of the programming is in a Zoom meeting format where the instructor is live in the classroom and can interact with participants and participants can interact with each other.”

Emerson said that students can watch the instructor and the instructor can see the students if they have a video camera they can use at their home. Instructors demonstrate, lecture, show videos and build time into each class for students to complete their work and to offer private critique if the student wants it.

Classes and workshops include something for everyone including adults, families and kids from six years old and up. Some classes last one session and others can go up to 12 weeks.

One of the favorite workshops is the pumpkin carving workshop called Ultimate Jack O’ Lantern Carving. It is geared towards kids of all ages including teens and adults. The one-day workshop is scheduled for 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 27.

CMA is collaborating with Arrowhead Orchard Applehouse Farm Market for the pumpkins and the carving kits. Participants will pickup of the materials at CMA before the workshop date.

“There is no tracing or stenciling in this workshop, we are carving the pumpkins,” Emerson said.

Some of the classes require participants to use items from their homes and others require materials to be picked up before the class or workshop starts. Prices for the classes run from $12 for members ($15 for nonmembers) to $169.

CMA did offer summer classes and camps virtually the past few months and Emerson said everyone had a good time and the technology worked great. Plus, the Museum offers a link called CMA From Home on its website (https://www.cantonart.org/) where visitors can select a variety of activities such as art therapy relaxation, explore the CMA, virtual scavenger hunt and more.

“Our instructors for the online classes are the same instructors we use for in-person classes," Emerson said. "They are all professionals in their field. We have been training them to do online presentations and the transition has been going great. The virtual art classes offer an opportunity for kids who are hands on. A lot of the arts programs are being cut out of the digital classes at schools and we are trying to fill that gap.

“For adults, it a chance to do something different while feeling safe and the classes can be like a therapy where you take time for yourself. Classes and workshops are fun, creative, relaxing and the students get to meet new people and discover new creative things about themselves.”

Classes include painting, drawing, book making, jewelry making, ceramics, zine making and others. One adult only workshop is called Alcohol Ink Landscapes & Adult Milkshakes. CMA partners with PAV’s Creamery in North Canton for class materials where students learn to make an alcohol ink painted landscape and how to make alcohol infused milkshakes.

For a complete list with dates, times and prices and to register, visit https://www.cantonart.org/learn.