Camps for Creative Kids
With more and more schools cutting their arts programs, summer camp is the only opportunity for many kids to explore their more creative side. From painting to filmmaking or even cooking, these right-brained camps are sure to spark something new in your kid’s life.
Arts Aloft (Seattle)
Arts Aloft fills the summer with weekly four-day camps during which children explore a variety of art media through pop culture themes such as “Harry Potter” and “Star Wars,” or perennial kid faves such as fairies and ancient Egypt.
Illumination Learning Studio (Seattle)
Illumination Studio offers weeklong camps with creative themes that focus on visual arts, music, drama, dance and ecology. Camps include field trips, engaging lessons and outdoor playtime. Weekly music lessons are an optional add-on.
Museo Art Academy (Issaquah)
Each week, Museo’s four-day summer art camps have a different theme — drawing, painting, sculpting, mixed media. There’s also a Fridays-only pottery class. Families can choose morning or afternoon half-days or sign up for both sessions with the lunch hour included to create a full-day camp.
Pratt Fine Arts Center (Seattle)
Pratt offers serious art instruction in myriad skills, techniques and media for all ages every quarter of the year. Check out its website for more information about classes, camps and Pratt’s Tuition Assistance Program. Its youth program fosters art appreciation for students ages 5–12, while the teen program (13–17) is specifically designed for teens who want to explore creating art in a professional studio environment.
Cost: Varies, generally $150–$300 (check their website for summer 2023 info)
NW Film Camp (multiple locations)
At NW Film Camp, young filmmakers use their own stories and experiences to produce a short film. Along the way, they learn about production planning, location scouting, how to use filmmaking tech and gear, screenwriting, project management, editing and so much more.
FrogLegs Cooking School (multiple locations)
Each session of these weekly cooking camps lasts between two and four hours. Kids learn kitchen skills in the process of preparing themed recipes each day. Novel themes include Willa Wonka, retro soda shop, food you eat while camping and treats inspired by the wizarding world.
Gage Academy of Art (multiple locations)
Gage offers a safe space (online and in person) to learn from forward-thinking professional teaching artists. Teen Art Studio is a free, year-round youth arts program that increases access to arts education for teens who are experiencing homelessness, are at risk, LGBTQ, belong to underserved communities, speak English as a second language or face other barriers to creative outlets. Other summer program options were not available at press time, but Gage usually offers both in-person and virtual camps that provide practical art instruction.
Cost: TBD (check their website for summer 2023 info)
Paint Away! (Redmond)
Paint Away! offers weeklong camps that run from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. each day. During these camps, young artists try their hand at fusing glass, painting on canvas, painting pottery and more.
Young Chefs Academy (Covington)
Young Chefs Academy offers cooking camps year-round. Each day, campers learn new techniques and seasonal recipes. During each four-day camp, kiddos prepare between 16 and 20 recipes. At the end of each day, caregivers are invited in to taste their camper’s creations. At the end of the camp, young chefs receive a binder with the week’s recipes. Family workshops are also available.
Made Sewing Studio (Seattle)
Ranging from daylong workshops to weeklong camps, Made Sewing Studio’s summer programs teach sewing skills through a variety of projects, such as making pajamas, sweatshirts and bags. There are also camps in screen printing and fashion design.
Blue Ribbon Cooking (Seattle)
From a cuisine tour of Italy to developing comprehensive baking and culinary skills, Blue Ribbon Cooking offers cooking and baking classes for kids under the guidance of professional chefs. Kids will gain confidence and learn how to work independently in the kitchen, bringing home some yummy treats to share in the bargain.
Ages: 7–17 (Pre-camp, ages 4–7)
Up next: Performance Arts Camps