Iconic “Harry Potter” music played around a table of wizards and warlocks during the Associated Students Inc. Drop-In Art Workshop on Wednesday in the Titan Student Union.
Attendees transformed simple chopsticks into mystical weapons, waving their wands in symphonic fashion as “expelliarmus” and other spells were cast across the Grand Stair Studio.
Art Instructor Kathleen Anne Cerdena entrusted a wooden wand to each person to initiate their own creative development. Loaded hot glue guns, paint bottles, paintbrushes and blow dryers were laid out for participants to begin the wand-crafting process.
“I was trying to think of Gryffindor vibes, because I always knew that Harry Potter had a broomstick wand, but I wanted it to be edgy,” said Ali Parandi, a third-year child and adolescent studies major.
Parandi said his favorite spell was “wingardium leviosa,” a popular incantation among “Harry Potter” fans. Parandi, along with other “Harry Potter” fanatics, were eager to create their first wands.
“I came here because I was interested ever since the first semester, but I never had the time, so I’ve always wanted to make a Harry Potter wand, because I’m interested in Harry Potter and I wanted my own wand,” said Jose Hernandez, a first-year computer science major.
Between the crafts and spells, Parandi found other reasons to attend the workshop. He has classes three times a week, most of them on the Irvine campus, but instead of trying to find a place to nap, Parandi immerses himself with other on-campus activities and events.
“It makes me want to stay at CSUF longer and it makes it more interactive to get to know other people,” Parandi said.
Although the workshop was only an hour long, those in attendance were able to fashion intricate staffs and scepters varying from vibrant colors to dark matter.
Artists freestyled designs, ranging from plain wood to whirling patterns as inspiration flowed from their fingers, letting magic inspire their work.
Hernandez made a detailed wand for his girlfriend that rivaled the work of legendary wandmaker Ollivander himself.
“Valentine’s Day just passed, and I didn’t get my girlfriend something, and she likes Harry Potter, so that’s why I added the little heart right here. That was for her,” Hernandez said.
Cerdena said she wanted to become an instructor after thinking about the positive effects art entails with students’ mental wellness.
“I love to do arts and crafts, that’s just my hobby,” Cerdena said. “As a psych major, I know about art therapy and how effective it can be, so I thought of it as a stress reliever for myself and for students.”
Cerdena’s views were shared among the group as students attended the afternoon event during a gap between their busy schedules to relieve stress and blow off steam.
“I just think it kind of puts me in a good mood for tests and things because it ‘de-stresses’ me. I have an exam today, but I’m not stressed anymore because I’m having fun,” Parandi said.
“Harry Potter” fans will be able to gather at another themed workshop on Thursday at 3 p.m., where sorcerers will be creating potion jars to complete their collection of magical items.
Cerdena said that she gets inspiration for her art workshops from Pinterest but she also came up with her own creations for the semester.
Other workshops include learning how to paint, creating upcycled T-shirt bags and designing wire jewelry. Associated Students Inc. Drop-In Art Workshops will continue through the rest of February, every Wednesday and Thursday at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.
“It fills the gap of the day,” said Cierra Maciel, a third-year art education major. “I think it’s a cool, fun activity to have fun and meet people. Channel the Harry Potter vibes.”