Hope Outdoor Gallery – Austin, Texas
Austin’s Coolest Art
Hope Outdoor Gallery with KIDS!
Things to See do in Austin Texas
Benefits of painting – Art, in general, is good for you
Creating art is a wonderful method of self-expression and gives your brain a break from the day to day thoughts. These breaks let your brain reset and refresh. Research shows
“the average person has 60,000 thoughts per day and 95% of them are exactly the same day in, day out!”
Can you EVEN? I haven’t a clue how ‘they’ figure out that number, but an even worse number? Most of those thoughts are negative. Think about that for a second – MOST of the 95% of the thoughts people have day in and day out are negative. How very sad.
Creating art gives you a way to get out of those normal and negative thoughts and into a quiet and meditative state. Creating art trains you to concentrate on details. Paying attention to the here and now of your environment while you create is a fun and easy way to retrain your brain! A perfect example for adults are the new coloring books – quiet and peaceful relaxing art. Everyone is getting on the art creation bandwagon!
According to M. Berberian, Professor for the Graduate Art Therapy Program and NYU suggests coloring has many positive benefits
“Coloring definitely has therapeutic potential to reduce anxiety, create focus or bring [about] more mindfulness”
Kids can experience stress, too, and isn’t relaxation a great tool to offer kids? Teach your kids how to handle stress now and offer them a lifelong tool for them to use to improve their life.
Benefits of Painting – Painting is
The Hope Outdoor Gallery is the ONLY park of its kind in the USA. Of course, it is in Austin, Texas – the city that is proudly weird!! Located at a park at 11th and Baylor in Austin, this educational project started in March 2011 with the help of artist Shepard Fairey.
Hope Outdoor Gallery – Kids love creating
When kids are young, they love creating. Your refrigerator gets covered with art from school and home fun. But, there comes a time when kids start to question their ability. They wonder if their art is ‘good enough’ and they become hesitant to create. Once they grow up then forget about creating art.
“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.”
Giving your child opportunities to create lets them express themselves without judgment. Hopefully, they’ll keep that creativity into adulthood!
Hope Outdoor Gallery – Spray paint
The benefits of painting are even different if you are using a spray can vs a paintbrush.
Kids love painting and get opportunities for that at school but always with a paint brush.
Think to yourself how often you have painted whether you are creating art or painting the bathroom – you usually use a brush. THIS art creation opportunity lets you use a spray can – a very unusual fun opportunity for kids and adults alike.
Learn something new every day!
In this case, you’ll learn that spray paint is hard to control. It runs if you spray it too thickly and the overspray goes everywhere. Be sure to dress the kids in their play clothes that are OK to get messy.
I learned about overspray the hard way! Once, I was determined to save a little money and paint a small section of wrought iron fence. I bought black spray paint and covered the ground with a plastic tarp. I held a large cardboard box on the other side of the fence and sprayed away!!
During the clean up I noticed my feet. In my infinite wisdom, I had worn sandals. The fence turned out great! I was thrilled with my little project! Until…I realized that paint ‘mist’ had fallen (thank you gravity) and covered my feet. When I took my sandals off I had stripes. For a week. LOL!
So, the kids, even if they are very tidy with the actual paint, could be covered with paint when you leave.
Hope Outdoor Gallery – Choose and plan
You have to be over 18 to purchase spray paint. That tells you how rarely kids get to use spray cans for painting!
I let my kids each bring a friend and told them that each group could choose 2 colors of spray paint. I chose white and black paint that both groups could use.
The benefits of painting include critical thinking!
This gave the kids the opportunity to:
Think about the pros and cons to different choice options.
Work together with a partner.
Work together as a group. In the end, they discussed sharing all four colors and not just the two their group chose.
Help at the checkout. Each person got to scan a paint can. Squeeze in learning wherever you can!
Hope Outdoor Gallery – Admire other artist’s work
Art appreciation begins with accepting that ALL artwork has value – even the art that you don’t like.
Art is a way to express feelings, make statements, and make people think.
Walk around the gallery and look at the art others have created before you. Talk about what you like!
This is an important step because every single spot is covered in paint already so your art will be covering up the art from someone else. Encourage them to think about that when they choose a spot.
There are so many benefits of painting. Use the time to get off the phones and interact with each other.
Encourage the kids to:
Find something they like.
Find something they don’t like.
Find something they think it really weird.
Find something that makes them wonder…
I found it really curious that even the bush got painted!
Hope Outdoor Gallery – Focus and Pride
Stand back and watch the focus on each little face while they paint. Enjoy watching their thought processes. These experiences will be with them forever!
Creation requires focus and concentration. It is always a good idea to practice both at every opportunity.
Smile when they are proud of their work. It is great to take pride in your work!
Benefits of Painting – Discuss the Art
How you discuss kids’ art is really important. The benefits of art include expression and sometimes expressing things that are hard to find words for kids.
Open-ended questions will get the kids talking.
Say things like to get the conversation with the kids started.
I like the way you combined those colors.
What does this painting mean to you?
What were you thinking about when you painted this?
I love your art! Tell me about it.
Hope Outdoor Gallery – The How-To
First of all, this is an ART GALLERY and NOT a public park.
You have to get permission to participate.
Email for permission to paint: email@example.com You’ll need to fill out a request, sign a waiver, submit a sketch of art plan, and pick up paint passes IN PERSON (Sat and Sun 11 am – 4 pm). Artists must be 18 years old or WITH an adult.
The park hours are 9 am – 7 pm. CLOSED at dark.
Second, the current location has VERY little parking. A move to a larger place with more space and more parking is in the works!
1101 Baylor Street
Austin, Texas 78703
UPDATE – Hope Outdoor Gallery is MOVING
The benefits of painting are so valuable and important that the gallery is moving to a bigger and better location!!!
Late 2018 the gallery is moving to a location about 30 minutes from the original location and near the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport.
9507 Sherman Rd (near the interchange of 183 and 71)
Get directions to the Carseon Creek Ranch – here.
Hope Outdoor Gallery – Tour
Don’t want to tackle it on your own? Take a tour!
The company SprATX (pronounced Spray Tee Ex) offers a small graffiti tour which includes the Hope Outdoor Gallery.
The tour (I’ve not tried it myself) offers a t-shirt to protect your clothing and spray paint.
Enjoy another example of what Austin does best – be proudly weird and unusual!
If Austin, the state capital of Texas, is on your bucket list, read more about the cool things to see and do!
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Natalie, The Educational Tourist