Spectacular Omanut Offerings at Camp Ramah New England!

The visual arts are flourishing at Camp Ramah New England! Yesterday, chanichim (campers) began their first round of chugim (electives). Omanut (visual arts) has long been a big camp favorite, with multiple interesting options in many mediums. (See full list below!) This department – one of the largest in the camp – provides hundreds of chanichim with multiple entry points for self-expression and the exploration of Jewish and personal themes.

Chugim meet every day for two weeks. Some options – like Watercolors and Camp Crafts – may permit chanichim to complete multiple projects during this time frame. Other options – like Ceramics (hand-building and wheel), Animation and Video – give chanichim the opportunity to engage in multi-step, multi-day projects, with their skills building on one another over time.

Rabbi Marcy Delbick, the Omanut coordinator for first session and a long-time Omanut instructor, teaches ceramics alongside madrichim (counselors) Ayelet Wiederhorn and Kobe Deener-Agus. Marcy loves to teach chanichim the challenging discipline of throwing ceramic objects on the wheel, which is unfamiliar to most chanichim. Marcy has worked to improve her own skills and teaching methodologies so that each lesson emphasizes safety, skill-building, and having a good time at the wheel – with a finished piece at the end! Nate B., in Machon, has been inspired by his summers learning the ceramic wheel; he recently completed a year-long high school course in 2D and 3D art to develop and refine his ceramic and other arts skills.

Eyal Chirurg, an illustrator and animator in Israel, is teaching the Animation chug. On Thursday, each chanich made a thaumatrope, an optical toy with a spinning disk on a string. Starting with this simple form of animation, Eyal will teach basic principles using flipbooks, zoetropes, and other analog forms of animation. Certain classic skills – how to animate a bouncing ball and convey the motion of walking – will be taught. Eyal loves working with the chanichim because “they are so into it, and they love their craft – they also leave me with their beautiful hand-drawn sketches on the paper that covers the table.”

A few Omanut “regulars” explained why they choose Omanut chuggim every summer:

  • Elijah M: “In Omanut, I feel comfortable doing something even if I’m doing it for the first time.”
  • Avi Z: “I’ve chosen Omanut every single time since Kochavim, because it’s fun!”
  • Mia G: “I love Omanut – there is so much to do, there is something for everyone.”

Chanichim love exploring the different disciplines offered through the Omanut program and expressing themselves in their art!

Omanut offerings for beginning of First Session:

Ceramics – hand building and wheel
Duct Tape/Sharpie Art
Scrapbooking/Paper Crafts
Camp Crafts
Drawing and Painting
Jewelry making