The Grand Theatre Center for the Arts is launching a live, interactive online drawing class Wednesday afternoon for children and adults sheltering at home because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Valerie Pavlakis, arts education program coordinator at the Grand, has planned a free six-week drawing course taught by Amanda Trask that will be broadcast live on Facebook at 2 p.m. Wednesdays through May 13.
The Grand Theatre was closed and all its spring shows and arts education classes were canceled in response to the city’s stay-at-home order that took effect March 18.
“All of our classes, unfortunately, due to the current health dilemma that’s going on, were canceled. So we just wanted to stay active in the community and kind of give back in this uncertain time,” Pavlakis said. “So we were brainstorming how we could do that and this is one of the things we can do. We can go live on Facebook and offer this drawing class with one of our very talented instructors.”
Trask has taught classes in ceramics, fused glass, drawing, painting and sensory art at the Grand since 2017. Her family-friendly Facebook Live classes will use simple materials and be geared toward school-age children and adults. Each week’s class will have a different topic.
“There’s definitely some weeks you will see more kid friendly, such as drawing animals or fantasy creatures, where other weeks might be a little more advanced for the teens or adults, which would be more like anime or breaking down figure drawing,” Pavlakis said. “If Mom wanted to log in and have all of her kids participate, that would be great.”
The classes will use supplies most people have at home. A blank piece of paper and a pencil are all that’s required to follow along. Individual artists can also choose to add color with colored pencils or other art supplies.
Members of the community will be able to interact with Trask as she teaches the class.
“The great thing about doing it through Facebook Live is anyone who logs in during Facebook Live can then comment and ask questions, so if they wanted clarity on some technique Amanda is doing or something, they can type right on their computer screen and ask questions right as the class is going on,” Pavlakis said.
Each class is designed to be 45 minutes long.
“It will all depend on class participation,” Pavlakis said. “Obviously, there is a delay between when people do the comments to the time it gets to the instructor, so it will just depend how much people are interacting and if it runs longer, wonderful.”
The drawing class is the only online class the Grand has planned for now.
“At this time, we’re playing it day-by-day, as you know, but right now this is the only one we have scheduled so far,” Pavlakis said. “I worked with Amanda and we set up a six-week program because the six weeks would be the remainder of our winter-spring semester, because we had to cancel all of our classes.”