The box and its contents belong to Odalis Hernandez, of the Schmidt migrant camp, and are the products of the 2-year-old's first effort at printmaking.
She's one of a handful of migrant children attending an art program conducted for one week every summer by a group of Adrian artists and volunteers.
Last Wednesday evening, Odalis sat in her mother's lap, tentatively holding out her hand as Becky Irvine, a Siena Heights University student volunteer, rolled red paint over her palm. Odalis' tiny pursed lips became a grin as she smacked a handprint onto the box, making a more decorative artwork container and branding it as her own.
The camp is sponsored by Adrian College, which also puts on various art programs for Adrian children yearlong. The theme of last week's camp was printmaking.
On Wednesday, a handful of children etched pictures into palm-sized pats of clay, creating makeshift printing plates. Completed artworks were hung with clothespins from a line along the side of the tent, gently fluttering in a breeze that brought a slight respite from the heat. Other wooden boxes contained collections of colored paper, decorated with leaves, flowers, and even a Santa Claus.
Carlos Tobar, the art camp's resident artist, is originally from Ecuador and now has a studio in Adrian. Though he focuses mostly on painting, Mr. Tobar said he was once in charge of printing for Adrian College.
"I think printing is the most beautiful thing in the communication," he said.
He holds out an intricately carved wooden printing block.
"We've been using the old system for printing I pass them by hand to see how things are done," Mr. Tobar said. "The kids, they never saw these things. I want them to see how things were done [in the past] - everything by hand."
Deb Irvine, the program's director and an art professor at Adrian College, commended Mr. Tobar for his work.
"Carlos is really good at starting at a basic level and working up to harder projects," she said.
His strategy is important, she added, because many of the children haven't had much exposure to art in school.
Speaking in Spanish through a translator, Lidubina Hernandez, who is the mother of Odalis, praised the program.
"This program is a really good idea because they're learning things they don't learn in school, and it keeps them busy," Ms. Hernandez said.
"It's fun and good for their mental health."
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