Under the direction of small hands, balls of clay slowly turn into turtles, pots and snakes at Cherry Doster's summer art camp at the Lancaster County Recreation Center in Indian Land.
"It's squishy and it feels good," Selima Gates, 8, while working on her creations last week.
Students in Doster's art camp played with clay, painted, and worked with papier-maché during the week-long camp focused on exploring the arts. The Indian Land camp is the first in a series of camps Doster is offering around the area this summer at recreation centers around Lancaster County.
This week, and again in August, Doster will also bring her eclectic camp to Leroy Springs Recreation Center.
"Wacky Art Camp" will teach campers to use everyday objects and turn them into art. Old vinyl records, old shoes, broken china, lace, ribbon and artificial flowers are among the items Doster hopes to use for "recycled" art projects.
"All of my projects include nothing more than what most folks consider 'trash!' " Doster said in a recent e-mail to the Fort Mill Times.
Donations of such items are welcome, Doster. They can be dropped off at the Leroy Springs Recreation Complex, Bob Doster's Backstreet Studio in Lancaster or at the Lancaster County Council of the Arts.
Doster, an artist and the wife of metal artist Bob Doster, said she believes art education is vitally important to children. Most schools don't have the funding or the time to do in-depth art education anymore, she said, so it's important that camps and classes are available to the students.
"I have a strong belief that art is learning. It's valuable to them in all areas of study," Doster said. "A lot of kids learn by creative process, if not all of them."
The next session of Doster's Wacky Arts Camp at the Leroy Springs Recreation Complex will be held Aug. 11-14. The fee is $75 for members and $85 for non-members. For more information, call 547-2235.
Another camp is scheduled in the Indian Land area for the week of July 21, sponsored by the Lancaster County Council of the Arts. Contact Doster for more information on the camp or about recycled items at (803) 287-7853.