It’s part of what the New Yorker
calls the “Peter Pan market
”: a vogue for youthful things (coloring books, summer camps, even faux pre-school classes) rebooted for an adult audience. And while some may bristle at the conceit—which, fair enough, can occasionally seem ripe for a Portlandia
parody—it’s worth considering the merits. For some, it might even be a fast-track to recover a lost creative impulse
, all over the course of a long weekend.
The latest concept in this vein is Creator Camp, co-founded by Margaret Williamson Bechtold and Shonagh Speirs (who bill themselves as a “creative consultant/futurist” and “designer/instructor,” respectively). From October 26th through 29th, they’ll kick off their first “art camp for adults” in Marfa, Texas. Future iterations, the duo say, could feasibly take place in Mexico City or Ojai, California, among other destinations. The four-day camp in Marfa will cost participants $875, which covers all activities, materials, and meals, but does not include travel or accomodations.
Part of the goal, as Bechtold explains it, is to bring back that “running-around-the-house-blindfolded-as-a-child feeling.” In other words: a sense of wonder, play, and unbridled creativity. Only for Bechtold and her partner, the target demographic isn’t kids—it’s grown-up artists and designers who need a quick recharge.
Bechtold and Speirs, who both work in the design and fashion worlds, met in Austin. They both know the freelance life well, and thought that Creator Camp might appeal to other creative workers, who lack the social sphere of an office. “We’re often in our own studio all day, alone,” Bechtold says. “We could benefit from the camaraderie of being in a camp, and thought that other designers could, too…as well as someone who’s still in the New York or L.A. grind, and needs a weekend to clear their head, to think differently—but not on the beach with a drink.”