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The importance of art and creativity in a child's development

Ari's work.
Ari's work.

Written by
Joe Richardson
Published date
12 October 2020

Creativity and the arts are being squeezed out of UK schools, a major report has said.

Over the past several years, there's been a trend of schools cutting the arts from the curriculum. We all know art is important for children. But beyond what we feel or believe, the importance of art in children's development is key. Arts and creativity cultivates well-being and help young learners create connections between subjects.

According to a report put together by academics from Durham University, it concludes that creative opportunities, like those provided by Future Creatives, stimulate young children’s curiosity, creativity, and imagination, and support the development of communications skills. Being creative helps children cope with their feelings and fears, as well as managing their emotional states.

Not only is creativity good for well-being, it can also lead to a fulfilling career. The UK has always prided itself on our visionary creatives. The creative industries are the fastest growing part of the UK economy, contributing over £100 billion every year. That is greater than automotive, aerospace, life sciences and the oil and gas sectors combined.

Young students working in class with teacher.

Over the last few months our Future Creatives community has grown so much, and we’ve been excited to see students joining our online workshops from all around the world. Siblings Aris and Danae are based in Athens, Greece and have frequently joined our online classes, tuning into our courses on how to make self-portraits in the style of Aurélia Durand, learning colour theory plus many more!

At Future Creatives, our main aim is to support the next generation of creative kids and teenagers in exploring their creativity outside of the classroom and helping teenagers develop their skills for GCSEs, A-levels and beyond. We got in touch with Aris, Danae and their mother Stephany to learn about their future career goals and how taking a Future Creatives course has impacted their approach to making art and design.

Ari's work inspired by Van Gogh.

When we asked the young learners what they had learnt from working with Future Creative, both were keen to communicate how they feel energised by the abundance of skills they have acquired during our bite-sized chunks of creative education with focused objectives:

“I have learnt how to apply a range of painting and drawing methods in a short space of time.” - Danae 

“I’ve learnt how much I can do in one hour with the right materials and teacher!” - Aris 

The pair reflected on how their experience learning with Future Creatives offers them the opportunity to utilise more “modern techniques” than they had learnt in school or on other art courses. They highlighted how the sessions have afforded them the chance to bring an idea from formation to fruition in one session: “It is really enjoyable to complete a whole project in one go. At school, we never have enough time!”

Their mother, Stephany, expressed how she was happy to see her children “experimenting and thinking creatively” and how “they’ve both learnt new methods and were excited to see what they could achieve in such a short space of time.” Stephany had previously benefited from the enriching environment of UAL whilst taking a course. She signed her children up for a Future Creatives class to enable them to encounter a wide range of art and design techniques to see if they would be interested in pursuing a career in the arts themselves.

Both the young learners have plenty of ambition. Aris aspires to “be living in Paris, painting and playing football”, which seems to be the influence of his self-portrait inspired by Aurelia Durand (pictured). Danae would like to “combine art with photography and video making” to pursue a career in advertising and promotion.'

Aris' self-portrait.

The two young artists source their inspiration from their local art scene alongside the canon of painting, ancient historical artefacts and contemporary international artists. Aris described how he would have loved to have met Van Gogh to learn how he developed his “amazing drawing style” as well as his appreciation for the “simple forms” of the Keros figurines in Cycladic Art. Aris would “would like to see more public art in Athens”. Danae shares Aris’ interest in public art, telling of “a large wall at the centre of Athens with a huge graffiti piece created by a group of street artists” that she is particularly fond of. For Danae, being an artist means having the “need to create something”, this is a quality that she recognises in Banksy. If she ever met the enigmatic street artist, she would ask him “how he always has the motivation to paint.”

We are so pleased to hear that Aris and Danae have been getting so much from the online courses they’ve been attending and that they’re still hungry to learn more creative skills to help them realise their creative ambitions and find new sources of inspiration and motivation through the wide range of courses on offer from Future Creatives.

Is your child interested in pursuing a career in the arts? Perhaps they’re looking to reach that next grade at A Level/GCSE, or, maybe they want to try something new and develop their art and design skills in the evenings? It's never too early to start.

Check out our latest courses taught by a fantastic range of tutors with bags of experience in the creative industries.

If you want to meet our tutors, why not have a read of tutor feature with Lydia Brockless! Lydia shares insights about her own methods of making art and offers advice to aspiring young artists and designers.

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