Art As A Catalyst

by Lisa Marie Ryder, Director of The Alabama Folk School

The love for art and music was first planted in me as a young child while dancing to Elton John music with my dad and making aluminum foil Christmas ornaments with my mom. Those seeds were watered and nurtured in the arts and crafts cabin at Waycross Episcopal Camp where I attended every summer of my youth. 

Alabama Folk School Director, Lisa Marie Ryder (right), on Bear Creek at Waycross Episcopal Camp & Conference Center. Summer 1997

Alabama Folk School Director, Lisa Marie Ryder (right), on Bear Creek at Waycross Episcopal Camp & Conference Center. Summer 1997

The encouragement I received from the Arts & Crafts Director inspired me to participate in ceramics and cake decorating in 4-H, and dive into art, home economics, and music classes in middle and high school. And those experiences ultimately led me to pursue art and museum education degrees and enjoy a vibrant career in art museums and art education institutions around the world. 

When I look back, I can now see how those summers creating art at Waycross were a catalyst in my life. I can confidently say they play a profound role in why I am currently driving across country to begin the next chapter of my life as the Director of the Alabama Folk School at Camp McDowell.

I couldn't be more thrilled to share with you the upcoming spring and summer workshops at the Alabama Folk School:

* Bluegrass & Gee's Bend, April 18-21
* Cajun Weekend, May 6-8
* Youth Folk Camp, June 14-17
* C.A.M.P. Camp, June 17-19

I hope you will join us for an Alabama Folk School workshop soon, and perhaps you will find it to be a catalyst in your life.