[PA-NJ Glassblowers] Glass blower to share skills at Magic Arts Camp for kids in Princeton NJ this summer

Tony Patti gaffer at glassblower.info
Mon May 4 08:55:29 EDT 2015





Leanne Purkis Magic Arts Camp


For most of her career, Leanne Purkins has made a living out of encouraging
others to try new things, and now, she wants to learn how to do that for

The local glass blower - who has been teaching the craft to both adults and
children for a decade - will be opening a summer camp in Princeton this

Called Magic Arts Camp, the program - which will offer morning and afternoon
sessions at the Princeton United Methodist Church - will not only include
the chance for kids to create their own glass art, but to learn how to sew
and traditionally dye fabrics and cook in a commercial grade kitchen.

The additional skill sets on the table are a welcome departure from Purkins'
usual focus on glass, she said. But more importantly, Purkins said it will
give many local children the chance to stretch their own abilities - an
integral part of growing up.

"I think it's really significant for all kids to have their creativity
fostered, and if I tell them, 'You did so good on that project,' you can see
their light turn on," she said. "You're nurturing a different side of their
personality, which is really important when you're growing up."

But Purkins said she doesn't just want to tap into the artistic side of
children, but encourage them to truly create their own art. The methods she
uses - especially when creating glass art, she said - allows and emboldens
her students to go beyond simply replicating an example.

And the chance to break the mold is equally as appealing for the kids, she

"Kids are easier to teach this to than adults," Purkins said. "Adults get
caught thinking inside the box, but kids are willing to try things adults
wouldn't. Not every kid is into sports, so they don't get that reinforcement
with how good they are, but anybody can come in and I can teach them to be a
glass artist, or I can show them to sew something."

Still, she first had to teach herself how to think outside of the box in
order to get where she is in her career. A dental office manager for most of
her adult life, Purkins finally decided one day to quit and pursue her
artistic passion, first with a gallery in Lambertville, and then as a
traveling glass blowing teacher. Since then, she's built a career out of
what was once simply her hobby, and she hopes her camp will help children
realize that they, too, can follow their dreams.

"That's why I teach my classes not to replicate somebody else's art," she
said. "I think it's important to be yourself, to try different things, and
to come at it from a different way than anybody else."

Registration details on Magic Arts Camp and information on an open house
event Purkins will be holding on May 16 can be found at
<http://www.magicartscamp.com/> magicartscamp.com.




Tony Patti
 <http://www.glassblower.info> www.glassblower.info
 <mailto:gaffer at glassblower.info> gaffer at glassblower.info

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