If you've been a Wonderfilled reader for any amount of time, you know we revel in creative expression of all kinds. Our favorite stories come from people who are courageously creating their art, in whatever form it finds. Back in September, as we were putting the finishing touches on Wonderfilled Volume Three, we were introduced to Artsy Academy, a studio with 5 locations (including Asheville!) that helps folks find their inner artist. 

Co-Founder and fine artist, Allison Meaney, shared why it's important to connect with creativity and how each city fosters their mission. 

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As an artist, creativity fills a fundamental need for playful interpretation of the world around me, which elevates and quiets my spirit.

Though I believe creativity is very important to integrate into our daily lives, I understand that it’s sometimes difficult to take the plunge to get started, a reality that’s especially relevant to beginner artists who have the urge to create, but don’t know where to start.

People are turning to Pinterest and adult coloring books to quiet their minds and regain a connection with the world outside of screens. With crafting, it’s often more about the journey than the destination since it’s easy to relax as you're tangibly progressing at creating something beautiful. Creating anything, especially with high quality materials, is infinitely more satisfying than buying something from the store.

Artsy Academy

The ladies at Artsy host classes that range from terrarium-building to mural-painting. We had to ask, what makes these two disciplines the perfect starting point for artistic expression?

Terrariums foster a healthy home. Keeping living plant materials inside serves as a natural air filter, removing volatile compounds, not just carbon dioxide from the air. Because the terrariums are self-sustaining, the garden under glass is likely to live longer, for less effort. 

On an existential level, the locally-harvested crystal accents purify the room's energy, especially when kept next to a window. Similarly, constructing the terrarium itself is meditative - you’ll lose yourself in putting a little self contained universe together. 

Painting in and of itself is fun and creating collaboratively builds community. Because many hands builds light work, an organized group is able to create a large scale work of art for their office or community center in a relatively short amount of time. Our team building mural projects incorporate the input of up to hundreds of people, so the mural can serve as a focus and a point of pride.

Artsy Academy

Elements from each of our cities are woven throughout the fabric of our classes. Mountain Glass Arts in Asheville provides the raw materials for our terrarium workshops, which co-founder Tracie Sell manipulates to create the containers and glow-in-the-dark glass accents our participants use. Additional terrarium accents include, selenite crystal points from Ravennia, Ohio and Blue Ridge Mountain moss from the temperate rainforest around Asheville. 

Our biggest takeaway from our conversation with Allison was how easy it is to connect to your creative self with the right tools. As you explore the craft and design in the world around you, don't forget about the ways you can bring art to life. 

We want to see your creations! Show us your stuff with #dailywonder and we'll share a few of our favorites. Let's get crafty this year, shall we?