⋒ Kandinsky Kids Art Exhibit (Grasshopper Cafe ) ⋒

⋒ Kandinsky Kids Art Exhibit (Grasshopper Cafe ) ⋒

community workshop

This summer, the Charlestown Community Center Day Camp directors, Catherine Farley and Erica Walsh, with support from administrative coordinator Bob McGann, are making this summer one to remember for the campers at their BCYF program. The mission of Boston Centers for Youth & Families (BCYF) is to enhance the quality of life of Boston’s residents by partnering with various organizations. This year we were super blessed to be among the many new relationships.

To culminate the summer fun, campers visited Essem Art Studio and created a collaborative work of art inspired by Wassily Kandinsky’s color study, Squares with Concentric Circle.  Each Camper (age 6 to 12) created a single 6×6 square with concentric circles. Watching the kids explore color and thoughtfully create individual mini paintings inspired by one of my favorite artists; and ultimately putting together a collective work of art that will be exhibited at Grasshopper Café—all of it is just magical and fun.

⋒ Workshop: Paint Your Pet ⋒

⋒ Workshop: Paint Your Pet ⋒


Our first Paint Your Pet workshop with pet portrait artist, Bridget Foster Reed was such a blast that we are doing it again on September 10th (7-9 pm). Each participant started off with a lightly sketched silhouette of their beloved furry friend, a unique palette of colors carefully selected by Bridget, and loose guidelines to get started thinking about color, light, shadow, and details. It was a super fun evening of painting and trying something new and everyone went home with a lovely portrait of their pet.

We hope you’ll join us on September 10th!



⋒ Cardboard Rainbow ⋒

⋒ Cardboard Rainbow ⋒

art labs cardboard creations

Doesn’t really get more magical than this… we made lovely cardboard rainbows in our Art Lab today. Little artists/makers will explore colors of the rainbow, sort through our colorful crafting options, make thoughtful and creative decisions, and give their nimble fingers a chance to fine tune small detailed actions.

Following the lead of some of the amazing kids studios around the world, we are starting to include some up cycling in our Art Labs. We’re super excited to get into a series of Cardboard Creations. Stay tuned for more fun up cycling activities.


⋒ Our Book Nook ⋒

⋒ Our Book Nook ⋒


Our book nook is a cozy, quiet, and technology free space for anyone who wishes enter into a new realm of imagination and wonder… we are loving our nook! For our little artists and maker friends who finish a project early, or need to step away for a minute to regroup, this is a wonderful mini retreat.

Art Lab: Colorful Wooden Frames

Art Lab: Colorful Wooden Frames

art labs

For this week’s Music + Art Labs, we have a special art project – painting and decorating custom wooden picture frames. Our little artist and maker friends will have colorful and sticky fingers/hands in the end, but will also have a final project that will be a family keepsake for years to come! ♥️🌈🤩 Hope to see you there… Monday’s Lab is for 5 and under and Wednesday’s Lab is open to all ages.

We painted the first luscious layer of color on these wooden frames so our little artists and makers can come and get right started… 🙂 There will be glitter, buttons, wood pieces, foam stickers, and all kinds of fun decorations.

Upcoming Workshop: Paint Your Pet

Upcoming Workshop: Paint Your Pet


Tuesday Aug 6th · 6:30 – 8:30 PM
In this guided workshop with pet portrait artist, Bridget Foster Reed, you will capture that special something that you  love most about your pet—whether it’s the sweet head tilt, soulful eyes or playful prance—using color and form.

This workshop is for artists at all levels. We will be using acrylic paint on watercolor paper. You will email us a photo of the pet you want to portray in the workshop and we will select a color palette based on the photograph that will guide your exploration of color theory.  If you are a beginner and want us to prepare a portrait silhouette for you to work from, we would be happy to prepare that for you.

No experience necessary. The event is 18+ (and 13+ if you are accompanied by a participating adult/parent – this could be a great bonding experience for a parent/teen).

The workshop is $40/per participant (Limited to 12). Register online now.

Workshop with Svitlana Pimenov of white.c.a.n.v.a.s.

Workshop with Svitlana Pimenov of white.c.a.n.v.a.s.


Ack… all the feels! Indulge me in a little bit of history: I have been crushing on white.c.a.n.v.a.s. on instagram for the last couple of years… the photography, the lighting, the props, the food, and the photo surfaces (all drool worthy). I met Svitlana, the mastermind behind white.c.a.n.v.a.s., briefly at a CreativeMornings/Boston event over a year ago; and since she doesn’t live in Boston anymore, we took our friendship online as instagram friends. Over the last few months, that online friendship has come full circle and blossomed into an IRL one. So, here we come to it…

During a recent visit to Boston, Svitlana and I met up at the studio and she told me she wanted to challenge herself to teach an in person workshop. I had been plotting and planning for months to bring creative workshops for teens and adults to the studio. So, this was the perfect opportunity for us both to work together and challenge each other.

The workshop was a hands-on guided workshop on making a Faux Marble Photo Surface… altogether there were five of us engaged in the workshop. We got our hands dirty, learned a new skill, felt a deep appreciation for the complexity of something so seemingly simple, and bonded with one another.

So, the short of the long now is… I’m hooked. We’re bringing in more creative and fun workshops for the adults in our community… it’s a part of our mission to spark joy and inspire creativity that we are manifesting through adult programming. So stay tuned for future events!

Thank you to the ladies who made it out on a Saturday morning! Thank you, Svitlana for your heart forward approach to life and your work! And thanks to Alex for all of the great pictures of us in action.



Homemade Strawberry Banana Popsicles… 😋

Homemade Strawberry Banana Popsicles… 😋

creative play home activities recipes

For a little kid (and the kid within us all) nothing really beats a delicious frozen popsicle on a sweltering, hot day. Am I right? In our family, we try our best to limit our “added sugar” and artificial ingredient intake and sometimes that means witnessing the wistful eyes of our toddler when she sees other kids enjoying brightly colored and lovely looking sugar cookies, candy, and colorful bomb pops.

So, this summer, we’ve ventured into making popsicles at home… and we are all loving it. This is a fun kitchen activity we can do together, and the whole family partakes in the treats. Here’s a basic recipe that makes six 3-ounce popsicles. We’ve tried a bunch of flavors but this one is our favorite so far.


⋒ Strawberry Banana Popsicles ⋒

2 bananas (3 if your kid is a banana monster like ours)

6 strawberries

1 cup of almond milk (any milk)

Honey (to taste)

Vanilla (tiny dash) *optional

Muddler – You can blend as well, but we like the chunks of fruit so we use a muddler, a fork works as well.

Popsicle Mold – We loved the Zoku Classic Popsicle mold that we purchased on amazon but there are tons of fun characters and shapes out there to try.


Simple Steps: so simple a kid can do it… 

Just muddle/fork/squash/blend the fruits together. The juicy strawberries do get on clothes so don’t wear white (I may or may not be speaking from experience 🤦🏻‍♀️).

Add honey (a little will do if the fruit is sweet) and a dash of vanilla. Stir in almond milk.

Pour into the molds and prepare to answer the question “Are they ready yet” for the rest of the waking hours of the day.

Put the 🎨 ART in your 🌈 PARTY!

Put the 🎨 ART in your 🌈 PARTY!

art parties

We love hosting art parties in our studio that spark joy and creativity! Whether your little one is celebrating a birthday with all of his/her friends or the ladies are getting together to celebrate a bachelorette or new baby, or you just need a parents’ night out; we invite you to create in our beautiful studio space. We work closely with you to customize the perfect art/paint project for the age group and theme of your party. Contact us with inquiries at hello@essemartstudio.com

Basic Art Party Package:

$400 (up to 8 participating kids) $25 for each additional kid (up to 12 kids total)

Includes: 2 hours of party time (an hour before and after to set up and clean up) for a total of 4 hour rental; engaging art/craft activity upon arrival; Birthday Wish PosterBoard; Paint Project on prepared canvas (11×14 or 12×12 depending on theme). Each canvas is hand drawn and prepared for younger artists to provide a basic guide.

(If kids are under the age of 4, an adult must accompany them. This may affect the maximum # of participating kids. If additional staff is required, there is an additional charge of $30/hr per staff.)

An example 2 hour party breakdown:

1:00 Kids arrive and start to work on a mini project, sign Birthday Wish Board

1:20 Introduction to the studio, quick review of studio ground rules, and light snacks/pizza

1:40 Happy Birthday song + dessert

1:50 Clear up table and lay down art project/ Describe today’s project and get started

2:45 Start wrapping up projects to dry and clean up, birthday present time

3:00 Pickup time

Surface Making Workshop | White Canvas

Surface Making Workshop | White Canvas

studio workshop

We are super excited to announce that we are hosting our first adult workshop with Svitlana Pimenov of White Canvas at Essem Art Studio for a three hour workshop where each participant will learn how to make, and walk away with, a LIGHTWEIGHT FAUX MARBLE PHOTO BACKGROUND. We have admired Svitlana’s work for a couple years and it is a dream to have her at the studio. We hope you will join us. Here’s what the workshop will entail:

  • 3 hours of hands on experience with a small break for refreshments
  • learn how to (and walk away with your own) lightweight and absolutely unique faux marble photo surface
  • acquire original surface making techniques from Svitlana Pimenov, the founder of WHITE.C.A.N.V.A.S
  • get your questions answered during the Q&A session
  • BONUS: a DIY photo background supplies kit to take home backed up with a video tutorial

There are only 10 spots available, for more information and to book your spot, go to WHITE.C.A.N.V.A.S.