Sandyart... Creativity with the sands of time

By Miriam King, Bradford Times

Part finger-painting, part stop-action animation, part therapy – Sand Art combines the fluidity of sifting sand with the fluidity of film and thought to create a new artform.

As artist/creator Ekaterina Khrystych has noted on her website, “Throughout our childhood years, we all loved playing with sand. Sand carries the purest and the most charging energy of the earth while it reveals our artistic nature, creates new horizons, finds our emotional balance and lets us dive into the world of colorful fantasies.”

That's a lot in a grain of sand, but Khrystych demonstrates on light tables,  at her new Sandyart Land Art Studio in Bradford.

She first opened in Vaughan, offering an art studio and party room, with interactive video games and alternatives for creativity – a “unique art studio for all ages.” Now that she lives in Bradford, she has closed the Vaughan location, and relocated the studio to 152 Holland St. East, Unit 202, just upstairs from Nancy's Nifty Nook.

The artform originated in Ukraine and Russia. Ekaterina introduces kids as young as 3 to Sand Art, through sessions that include a lesson during the first half of the session – following along as a teacher draws in sand, shown on an over-head screen.

The second half is play, but “not like playing on the beach.” It's quietly creative, a great option for kids who need a calm setting, and who benefit from the combination of creativity, quiet music and reflective instruction.

In addition to children's classes, Sandyart Land Art Studio offers birthday parties – where kids not only create sand art, but use colored sands to create a sand art bottle to take home – and special animated “Light Shows”, that  illustrate a book, for kids in class or daycare; corporate events; or a special family moment.

She was hired to create a Light Show for a wedding. “They had no idea what sand animation is,” Ekaterina admits, but the studio created a show about the newlywed couple – how they grew up, and how they met. “It was so personal,” she says, that it touched the 300 guests.

As a mother of 3 – ages 3, 4 and 8 – her main focus is on children, but Sandyart Land Art Studio also offers workshops and classes for adults. Planned Sand Painting Nights will provide appetizers, wine and cheese, and 2 hour sessions  at the Light Tables, for grown-up fun.

For more information call 905-551-6922 or see www.sandyart.ca or Sandyart Land on facebook.com.