To celebrate CreativeKids’ 30th anniversary, members of our team are sharing their personal and work stories with the Creative Community – to tell you why we love what we do!
Josephine Chan is IM Creative’s General Manager.
– Fine Arts, Visual Culture and Education majors
– Art inspirer and coffee lover
– Always an adventurer
– Loves books and pictures, and getting to know the stories and people behind them.
How I entered the art education field
Love children. Love art. Love listening stories from the older and wiser generation. I learned about CreativeKids by chance and started my journey here just like that. It feels as though this field has chosen me, instead of the other way round.
Children’s affections, whether happy or sad, are so genuine.
Children’s ideas are imaginative, direct, and full of surprises.
Children’s sharing is lovely and sweet, making one forget all worries and trouble.
What is the most unique with children art education is that we get to experience that kind of “purity” every day. I’ve always felt that children are gifts from above. We spend at least 30% of our lives working. It is a blessing to be able to be a part of work for children. I am very grateful.
CreativeKids Then vs. Now
This studio first captured my heart with a flyer. The heading says, “Scared to be Making Mistakes? (while drawing)” 「怕畫錯？」That was around 20 years ago. A studio that encourages one to “try”, instead of advertising the idea of “drawing a pretty picture”. This is what schools at the time weren’t teaching.
These missions and the love for children are unchanged through 30 years. The biggest difference would probably just be the scale of the organization! With a bigger organization comes more people and more different voices. The sharing of ideas and perspectives among colleagues is what makes CreativeKids dynamic, just like transforming from two-dimensional to three-dimensional. Glad to have encountered and connected with a whole community of like-minded people here. Though with diverse views, we have one heart that never changed.
From a wild thought over a decade ago – to promote CreativeKids’ mission and across the city, to the founding of IM Creative in 2014, we have reached more children, bringing more of them joy and hope.
A flyer that says, “Scared to be Making Mistakes? (while drawing)”.
My growth at CreativeKids
During my time with CreativeKids, for almost 18 years combined, I have grown from a youngster who only knew art, but not education, into a “kid-ult” who enjoys working in people-development and art education, enjoys life, and enjoys learning from the next generation about all things new.
At CreativeKids / IM Creative, I am the happiest when…
There is really a lot that makes me happy – to witness the growth of children and to build good relationships with them – this alone already brings happiness.
A recent story is about a 12-year-old, very quiet student. Her first project at our studio was on one-point and two-point perspectives. It is indeed a bit challenging for a 12-year-old newcomer. After the first two lessons, she was still struggling to depict perspectives, and seemed to be finishing class with a bunch of question marks in her head every time. We, as instructors, always have back-up plans. So, I asked her, “Is it really difficult? Do you want to try drawing something else? Or do you prefer to keep challenging yourself? Unexpectedly, she told me firmly, “I want to keep challenging myself”.
Then she worked persistently to overcome obstacles and finally completed her art piece. Witnessing her appreciation of her own work, and the expression in her eyes that said, “I can do it too!”, I felt a rush of warmth from the bottom of my heart. I hope this experience has given her a boost in self-confidence that will always empower her as she grows up. To me, the greatest joy comes when students appreciate themselves, and find confidence in themselves.
In addition, in these few years, I focused on working at IM Creative, and served some underprivileged families in our society through art. In a parent-child event, a mother approached me at the end of the workshop. She said, “I was hesitant when I first heard that the workshop is 3 hours long. I was worried that I would be bored. But now that I have completed the workshop, I am very happy. I realized how independent my son can be in creating an individual art piece. While we worked on the artwork, I was able to quietly appreciate him. I am really too impatient in our everyday life and have not slowed down to observe and listen to him. Three hours went by so quickly. It was so relaxing to get creative together. Thank you so much to your team!”
To bring emotional fulfillment and joy to others, is the happiest part of my job.
My most memorable times at CreativeKids
The most memorable times are the two large-scale disease outbreaks, SARS and COVID-19. When the world pauses, when it’s gloomy outside, the CreativeKids family brings hope. “No matter how hard it seems, we move forward together until we see the rainbow.” Time and time again, we make it through every hurdle with faith. It is a beautiful picture.
To me, “Constructive Creativity” means…
It’s about the present and the future. What is currently constructed, positively affects the future. Let creativity soar, free and unconstrained, building a better future!
On CreativeKids’ 30th Birthday
I wish that CreativeKids and IM Creative bring joy, hope and love to more children.