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Visual Arts Program

"A picture tells a thousand stories," is very true for the troubled youth that we serve. Through drawing, painting, collages, photography, graphic and web design, high-risk youth can find release from their traumatic experiences by using the visual arts for expression. At the end of the programs, the kids have lasting souvenirs that they can share with their families and friends. We provide them with opportunities to publicly exhibit and sell their artwork.

Featured Program: "FoxGives Volunteers"

We're delighted that 30 volunteers from Twentieth Century Fox Studios who are part of a group called FoxGives contributed their time on Saturday, March 1st to help 30 emotionally-disturbed teenagers to create "zines" (short for magazines) at Vista Del Mar in Culver City.

These youth have severe emotional and behavioral disorders, many due to abuse and neglect. They joined FoxGives volunteers in learning how to design their own small zines with their writing and artwork. The kids also got to print the covers of their zines on a simple printing press. Artist Cynthia Navarro gave them copies of zines that teach them how to make their own printing presses at home. She will print these zines on a special printer and return on April 12th to give the youth their bound copies of zines.

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Featured Program: "Homeless Kids Get Creative"

L.A. Family Housing is a transitional living shelter in North Hollywood with 140 children whose families have been left homeless. These kids have experienced the harsh realities of poverty by being forced to sleep on the streets, in cars and at emergency shelters. Most homeless children suffer physical, emotional and psychological damage from the upheaval in their lives. They have a higher incidence of mental illness and score poorly in academics.

These kids are starving for the arts and Create Now is delighted to give them this therapeutic outlet thanks to our summer intern Vanessa Crawford. She's volunteering to teach a 10-week Introduction to Art workshop that uses arts and crafts projects so that children can learn about composition, materials, color and other basic elements of visual arts.

Vanessa explained, "The first project we did focused on using clay that was molded onto wooden boards to create new shapes and textures. Some of the kids had never used clay before so it was an exciting opportunity where I could teach them basic techniques. Then we used paint to add details and vibrant colors to the wooden boards, and glue for extra decorations like plastic jewels. It was a very open project designed to let the children explore a variety of mediums.

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Read about some of our recent Featured Programs

Create a City Now Awakening the Inner Goddess Abused Kids Excited by Filmmaking
Photography Workshop for Orange County Youth
Happy Endings
Debra Wilson Brings Fun Times To Homeless Shelter
Exploring Life Through Painting
Graphic & Web Design Helps Substance Abusers
Incarcerated Girls Find Relief Through Arts
Troubled Girls Open Up Through Arts
Arts Calm Down Teens
Fine Art Inspires Foster Kids
Girls’ Detention Facility - Your Donations at Work
Women's Shelter of Long Beach

Special thanks to the supporters of our visual arts program

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors through the Los Angeles County Arts Commission, and the Department of Cultural Affairs.