My name is Catalina and I am originally from Colombia but have been living in Miami for the past 9 years. Growing up I was always very exposed to art, since my mom is an artist. I was always crafty but started painting (more seriously), showing and selling my work when I was 18. I did my major in communications but always combined it with art classes, and studio time.
Redviolet Studio started 8 years ago, originally as Redviolet Creations; and what I used to do back then was murals for kids rooms, artwork to hang and watercolor Gift Tags and Thank you Notes. 2 years ago, a friend (who clearly had a lot of faith in me) asked me if I wanted to do 1 afterschool art class at this place she worked…I loved the idea, but I must confess, I was fearful…I had never seen it possible to get paid for what I loved doing for fun: making art and crafts. But I overcame my fears and dived right in. And oh man, I was in for the journey of my life. I found true love and true passion. Sharing my love for the arts with these little ones really transformed me. I was happy again, I felt complete. I not only loved the arts, but also loved working with children, so I was in for the perfect combo!
I had worked for so many years doing things that I was good at, but felt no passion for, and finally, I had found IT, my true calling. This little class that started with 5 kids, then evolved into 10 and then into having to open a second one with 10 more. Afterwards, I started doing some Art Mommy&Me classes as well for younger kiddos and their caregivers and this was a big success too. These classes have always focused on sensory art&play and both the moms and the toddlers have really enjoyed them. I am one lucky girl, I get to do what I love.
I have a wonderful husband, who is a full time artist (www.gonzalofuenmayor) and 2 amazing and creative boys, Martin & Manolo, (6 & 4) who have grown to be surrounded by art and have their very own mini atelier in their room with free access to all kinds of paints and materials for them to create freely. I like to call them my Reggio boys, because they’ve been at a Reggio inspired school since they were very little and it’s been amazing to see their process in this approach to education. At their school I got introduced to the Reggio approach and have been obsessed by it for the past 2 years, reading, and investigating as much as possible. I feel passion by it and wouldn’t have them educated any other way.
I think every kid is born as a natural and creative artist and we must act as facilitators providing them with the opportunities to explore and discover on their own, fostering their imagination and their creativity as we help them build numerous skills through the process of making art.