Did you know that shadows are made of color?
The environment plays a significant roll as the "third teacher." The lighting, temperature, scent and layout are all obviously key components. But there are unique aspects in a Reggio Inspired studio. There are more mirrors in the studio. Mirrors allow artists to watch themselves as they are engaged in activities. There are often acrylic mirrors under and around table activities so the artists can watch as they manipulate objects and make new observations as mirrors give new and variety illusions when mirrors are positioned. There are small glass jars that are just the right size for young artist's hands. When items are placed in glass they appear more desirable. Natural wood.... Say good- bye to plastic! If the studio is set up as a "blank canvas" that has inspirations to spark creativity.
Animals, cars, trucks in the studio
There are always animals sprinkled in and around the Explorations and Invitations that are set up for artists to check out. Often times an artist will play and engage with the animals before they engage with anything else. They might form a relationship with each other. An animal might take off on adventure into the water table or make a friend with another animal. Play, play, play...... our artists are escaping into their imagination with the help of an animal, fairy and trucks are playing and the creativity has set in.... There are no rules to creativity.
In 1972, architect Simon Nicholson developed the Theory of Loose Parts; the idea that loose parts, materials which can be moved around, designed and redesigned, tinkered with; create infinitely more opportunities for creative engagement that static materials and environments. A few of my favorite "loose parts." Bottle caps, rocks, items from my Dad's workshop, beach treasures, rose petals, drift wood, broken instruments, items left on Sacramento street from neighbors and construction.