Let's Talk About Art: Super cool art camps this summer


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This is a biweekly series about art and artists in the region. Pittsburgh Filmmakers/Pittsburgh Center for the Arts serves the community through arts education, exhibitions and artist resources.

While the idea of an idle summer sounds tantalizing to stressed-out teens finishing up a busy school year, in fact, many dread the eventual boredom.

A super cool art immersion might fill the bill.

Pittsburgh Center for the Arts in Shadyside is offering a new high school program, called Summer Immersion. It begins June 17 and runs through Aug. 23. Each weeklong day camp, for students entering grades 9-12, focuses on a single project -- from concept to finished product -- in a variety of disciplines: ceramics, stained glass, painting, photography, programing, metal craft, animation, fashion design, filmmaking and more.

Teens raised on the legend of George Romero's "Night of the Living Dead," for instance, might be interested in the "Creature Design and Mask Making" camp. That locally made film sparked the whole zombie craze, as well as fueling an industry of special effects make-up and horror masks for the movies.

Local sculptor and special effects artist Adam King, who graduated from East Allegheny High School, is the instructor for this immersion camp. He looks forward to guiding students through the process of mold making with professional materials, such as latex and airbrush paint, to create a mask of their choosing.

When Mr. King was in college (Baldwin-Wallace, class of 2007) he began with traditional studio art classes, such as painting and drawing, but he became fascinated by special effects and mask making after taking film courses.

"I've been making monsters ever since," he says. He enjoys participating in annual events such as "World Zombie Day" and the Zombie Walks at Monroeville Mall, where the public gets a chance to witness his talents.

Any and all of the finished art projects made by high schoolers will be included in a Summer Art Camps Student Exhibition, on view Sept. 14-Oct. 5. In addition to the High School Immersion Program, PCA offers a full summer of weeklong art camps for children ages 4-14. To register or learn more: www.pittsburgharts.org.

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