Karla Young opens a downtown art school and studio for young people called Young at Art
LANCASTER — Karla Young apparently can’t get enough of teaching art.
She teaches it during the day in the Lancaster City School System and recently opened her own art studio called Young at Art at 110 W. Chestnut St. to teach at night. She teaches students of all skill levels from 7 to 17 years old.
“My goal is to teach each person on an individual basis and meet them where they are at,” Young said.
Young had previously given private art lessons when his children were younger, but moved away from it when they grew up.
“But about three years ago I decided that so many people were asking me if I knew anyone or if I might be interested (in teaching),” she said. “So I started teaching a few kids at my house and then the word got out and it grew to about 30 kids at my house last September.”
Young said she began to think and pray about whether she could juggle her work with the school system and expand her art instruction at night.
“So I decided to take a leap of faith and moved into the old Leaps of Faith dance studio on Chestnut,” she said. “I opened there on the first of October. Just word of mouth and I have a website and people have shared my Facebook page, it’s really taken off. I have 85 kids signed up right now and I have a waiting list.”
Business went so well that Young hired another art teacher to work one evening a week.
“We really appreciate it,” she said. “We get small groups of kids who really have a love and interest in art and parents who support them. It’s a great environment. The kids come together as strangers and they leave my class as as friends because art connects people.”
Young’s new venture certainly leads to long days, however.
“But it’s so rewarding and I love what I do,” she said. “It’s a blessing to be able to juggle both. I’ve always been a person who needs to keep busy and I’m definitely busy.”
Young said she loved art as a child. When she was in seventh grade at Thomas Ewing High School, a teacher inspired her to become an art teacher herself. Then, some teachers at Lancaster High School gave her the confidence to pursue her dream.
Young said art is important for children because it gives them a voice and a safe space to explore their own thoughts and ideas.
“It maybe helps them express what they’re going through,” she said. “It’s a great therapeutic tool. For some kids it’s the reason they come to school. It develops the right brain and it’s a different approach to learning. It helps them with their skills in problem solving. This hopefully gives them an appreciation because art is everywhere.”
In addition to art classes, Young’s studio includes the Splatter Studio where people can come in, cover up in protective gear and splatter paint a canvas. Young opened it the first weekend in November and had around 50 customers and sold dozens of gift certificates. Customers came from Dublin, Columbus, Zanesville and Cincinnati to splash.
The Splatter Studio is for kids and adults, corporate groups and more.
“They can have fun,” Young said. “They can splash the canvas or they can splash each other. It looks cool when they’re done.”
Young at Art is open for art classes around 5-8 p.m. Monday through Friday.
The Splatter Studio is open from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday and from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday.
For more information, visit www.youngatart.studio or the company’s Facebook page.
This article originally appeared on Lancaster Eagle-Gazette: Karla Young opens art school and studio for young people called Young at Art