Here’s some encouraging news for parents who want to get their kids away from computers and phones, and more involved in creative hobbies. A new online study from Bluprint, an NBCUniversal service offering subscription-based online learning, found that 68 percent of Americans are eager to use their creativity more often.
Even more inspiring, of those people surveyed who have Netflix, 77 percent would rather give up their subscription than their favorite creative hobby.
Bluprint Online Study — The Data
Bluprint is a form of “edutainment,” where subscribers get the supplies and online video lessons they need to complete art projects that range from sewing to cake decorating. With that in mind, it’s no surprise that this study asked Americans about their creative outlets. What was surprising, however, were the results in our digitally-focused world.
Of the 2,012 adults who participated in the study, three-quarters have at least one creative hobby, and more than two-thirds want to be creative more often. The most popular activities? Baking, gardening, cooking, home decor, and DIY crafting.
“Our data is showing that people who participate in creative hobbies versus those who do not are more likely to describe themselves as happy, joyful, [and] passionate,” said Maggie King, director of consumer insights at Bluprint, in an interview with Artsy.net.
Some questions in the study were directed specifically at parents. For example, 77 percent of parents want their children to be more creative than they currently are, while 61 percent believe that public education needs to focus more on creativity and the arts.
Overall, the study revealed that many Americans are interested in creativity but aren’t necessarily pursuing it as much as they wish they could.
“Inherently, a majority of content on Netflix, and TV in general, is entertainment focused, and thus passive in nature,” John Levisay, CEO and founder of Bluprint, tells Parentology. He notes that many viewers are looking for “actionable inspiration,” followed by creative empowerment. In short, the ability to not only watch programming with a creative theme, but then being able to make that item themselves.
“The notion that kids, and even most adults, want to just ‘watch a class’ is not a practical reality,” Levisay says, pointing to shows like Chopped or Chopped Kids on Food Network. While those types of shows may be inspirational and entertaining, they don’t make it easy for the viewer to actually prepare the meal or complete the art project. This is part of the inspiration behind Bluprint online classes. “Ultimately, we all want to grow, and experience, and make something cool and fun.”
Helping Children Become More Creative
As a parent, it can be tough to find ways to get your children to spend more time on active and creative hobbies. Levisay says that “the biggest barrier for people of all ages is the initial fear and apprehension around questions like ‘Where do I start?’ and ‘Can I really do this?’” But while starting a new hobby sometimes seems overwhelming, it often becomes more rewarding over time.
Levisay gets his own children interested in creative hobbies using an “object of inspiration.” He’ll find something like a beautiful cake or piece of art that interests and excites his kids, then he suggests they try to create something similar. Using this as a target, they learn things and add new skills in order to achieve their goal.
“The sense of confidence, pride, and accomplishment they have after creating something special is really rewarding for them and me,” he observes. “The time flies by and you are all just ‘present’ together having fun. In a world of excessive screen time, it’s the best way I know to engage with my kids and expand their creative horizons.“