Raised in White Rock, Jennifer Findlay returned to her hometown from Vancouver when she was pregnant with her first child.
The photographer and graphic designer was happy to be home, but noticed there was a lack of creative spaces for children in the White Rock area.
To fill the need for childcare and multi-use creative space, she opened Creō Art Studio in September at 1253 Johnston Rd. The vibrant, multipurpose storefront and studio offers a licensed, art-focused before and after school care program for children ages 5 through 12.
Starting in December, the studio is also offering ways for children to experience a creative setting with the flexibility of drop off and drop-in classes.
“Drop Off + Create”
On Dec. 3, “Drop Off + Create” classes for kids ages 4 and 5 will start running Tuesdays and Thursdays from 12:30 p.m. to 1:45 p.m.
Findlay uses upcycled materials for the arts and crafts whenever possible, to teach lessons about creativity and sustainability.
“For one of our crafts we colour coffee filters and make them into butterflies,” she said. “We believe teaching children that they can create something beautiful using items you find lying around the house is an important and useful skill.”
There will also be a lot of holiday arts and crafts this month, Findlay added, such as making ornaments and handmade cards.
“Drop-In + Craft”
For parents who prefer to stay and play, the studio is offering drop-in classes for children ages 2 to 5.
Starting on the morning of Dec. 2, parents can drop in with their children to enjoy the arts and crafts table, a cozy reading centre, as well as a painting station complete with easels and smocks.
“Giving children a space to create and use their imagination freely will enrich their lives immensely,” Findlay said, adding that the studio’s playdough, Lego, games and more benefit fine motor skills.
Licensed holiday camps
The studio will also have licensed holiday camps for school-age children between Dec. 23 and Jan. 3.
The Junior Photogs winter break camp will allow kids ages 8 through 14 to explore the magic of photography.
Led by Findlay herself, the licensed afternoon camp will teach children how to shoot beautiful images and understand camera settings, with lots of photo walks around White Rock.
The Marvellous Makers licensed morning camp will allow kids ages 5 through 12 to become skilled “makers of marvellous things.”
Findlay will lead children in making pom poms, tassels, jewelry, stamps, weavings, sewing projects and more, using a variety of materials and mediums.