The new art studio offers creative experiences News, Sports, Jobs

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Us and Art offers classes as well as art experiences and adventures in Pleasant Grove.

Courtesy of Ne and Art

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Us and Art offers classes as well as art experiences and adventures in Pleasant Grove.

Courtesy of Ne and Art

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Emily Hammerstad stands outside her new art studio in Pleasant Grove.

Courtesy of Ne and Art

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For a new art studio in Pleasant Grove, the focus is on creativity, not the final product. Us and Art, 44 S. Main St., which opened five weeks ago, is located in the historic downtown district and offers art classes, one-time classes, special events and art adventures.

“It’s an art studio for all ages. We have courses that are nine weeks in the summer and 12 weeks in the fall. We have day camps and overnights,” said owner Emily Hammerstad. Date nights are themed, such as ’80s Night or the Queen’s Tea, and classes are for all ages, from “Mommy and Me” classes, which are designed for children from 18 months to 108 years old, she said.

“We also partner with the other chocolate shop to do an edible paint night. They have a canvas that’s real chocolate and they paint with edible ink and they paint a masterpiece and then they get to eat it,” Hammerstad said. “Saturdays, it’s usually couples or girls night. Fridays are our theme nights. family, like a father-daughter meeting or the whole family.”

Patrons can also participate in one of the store’s art adventures. Participants go with the instructors outside the studio to a different location, whether it’s a hike to a waterfall or down in a park. They carry pots and pans that include paints, drawing tools, a canvas and a portable easel. Boxes are provided by the studio. The creation of art is integrated into the external experience.

“All our activities are focused on creativity, rather than technique. We want to focus on that skill and it’s okay to make mistakes. You’re there to fit the part and have fun,” Hammerstad said.

One of the biggest changes Hammerstad sees in her students is confidence. “Some come and are so nervous and barely talk to us. In the end, they are talking and connecting with all the students. We keep the classes smaller to keep that human-to-human connection,” she said.

Before opening Us and Art, Hammerstad ran a studio out of her home for years, something she called a fun project. “But I was getting waiting lists and eventually, I even had people looking for work. I had people graduate and they wanted to come work for me,” she said. “I realized there was a need in our community to have more access to the use of creativity.”

Hammerstad said she doesn’t have an art degree, but is extremely passionate about creativity. She loves learning about psychology and is fascinated by the effects creativity can have on the human body.

The name of the studio, “We and Art” comes from what Hammerstad called her home studio.

“When I first started, I was just joking around with my husband and I said, ‘I’m going to call it Unicorns Sprinkles and Art.’ He said, “Why not?” We kept that name for a while,” Hammerstad said. “As I got older and was able to expand to older kids and adults, we shortened the name. We also thought it really fully encapsulated how we feel about art – that it’s all of us.”

The location of the new studio is perfect, according to Hammerstad. She was looking for a space before the COVID-19 pandemic, but couldn’t find the right one. Then this place became available. “It’s amazing to be right in the heart of the city. We’ve had so many people stop by and say they can’t believe we’re here.”

More information can be found on their website, http://usandart.com.

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