Creative Expression at CC is Unbounded: Arts and Crafts Classes are Still Underway

Despite challenges posed by the continuing Coronavirus pandemic, the Arts & Crafts Program at CC has not abandoned its mission to promote creativity, imaginative thinking, and personal expression on campus. During Block 5, Arts & Crafts offered 13 total workshops, including in-person and virtual options. Social distancing measures have reduced class sizes, pushed some classes onto Zoom, and instilled new protocols in the classrooms, but for a fee of $10, students were provided with all necessary materials and equipment for classes in weaving, felting, embroidery, crochet, origami, block printing, stained glass, enameling, jewelry and/or drawing.

In addition to providing a space for CC students to learn crafts, Arts & Crafts also allows experienced students to instruct the introductory courses. Sophomore Olivia Coutre ’23 says she pursued teaching crochet once she realized she could share her love for arts and crafts with others. She states, “I find it so rewarding to teach others a new skill and to see them so proud of something they made themselves.”

Coutre discovered that the pandemic enhanced her need to create. “I taught myself how to crochet through YouTube videos at the beginning of quarantine and it really helped me fill my time with something creative and productive. I am now able to crochet almost anything I dream of and if it wasn't for all the time spent at home, I don't think I would have the same skills.”

Notably, while Coutre creatively benefitted from staying at home during the onset of the pandemic, she is grateful for the in-person socialization that the program currently offers.

“I think it's important to continue in-person activities during the pandemic because so much of our lives are virtual now, which becomes extremely exhausting. Having a creative outlet in an in-person environment really breaks up my day in a way that I've missed.”

Lynette DiRaddo, interim director for Arts & Crafts and weaving instructor, echoes Coutre’s sentiments. She also found that the pandemic enhanced more than hindered her creativity. “I have found the world moving at a slower pace, which allows more time for thought and ideas to come to the surface. It’s quite lovely.”

The pandemic’s slower pace has facilitated DiRaddo’s weaving instruction.

“Helping someone learn about weaving and fiber arts is about continuing the traditions and skills necessary to make cloth. Every civilization in history has had its weavers. In today’s culture, weaving is unique, very special, and not very common. If I can teach someone how to weave, I have done my part in passing the information and skill on to the next generation.”

When asked why it was important to continue in-person recreational activites during the pandemic, DiRaddo replies, “I believe that we all have a deep need to make things with our hands and that it’s not so much about what we make as it is about the experience. Craft connects us with previous generations and with each other. It’s an opportunity to focus and concentrate on something else, to switch off. Next time you’ve had a bad day, turn off the computer, put your phone down, and go make something. Arts & Crafts provides the opportunity, space, and materials to fill this basic need.”

The Arts & Crafts Program is offering 12 workshops during Block 6. Registration is found on the Student Life SUMMIT page. Registration begins fourth Monday of every block for the following block. More information can be found on the Arts & Crafts webpage.

Report an issue - Last updated: 03/05/2021