Traveling with Artist Children

Traveling with kids can be tough enough without accounting for their obsessions and idiosyncrasies. Parents of creative children will recognize this manifestation in writing, artwork and more.

When it comes time to plan the next family trip, make sure to keep your creative children in mind when booking transportation and finalizing your itinerary. Maximize your downtime, means of transportation and destinations to make sure everyone, especially your aspiring artist, has a great trip.

The first, and probably the biggest, thing to keep in mind is the space your kids will need to bring all their art supplies. For this reason alone, it may be wise to start looking at road trips as potential vacations. Road trips provide ample space for luggage, especially if you’re taking the family SUV. When the whole family loads into the car, there is plenty of space for paper, markers, crayons and colored pencils.

Road trips also lend themselves naturally to the idea kids will have a lot of downtime to utilize their art materials. Older kids can take inspiration from passing landscapes and put the mountains, lakes and deserts down on paper. The biggest downside to road-trip art is the way the car is bound to bounce along the way. This could annoy or upset kids trying to craft something with a steady hand.

Flights offer a different problem for artist children. It is much more difficult to pack a lot of materials when you are flying somewhere. It might be easier for kids to draw or color on a flight, but they will invariably have fewer supplies to work with. In addition, there is little to no inspiration once you settle on a flight. Unless the flight lasts upwards of 10 hours, it won’t provide the time to get creative like a road trip will.

The hardest part of travel with an artistic child might be convincing them they don’t need every last piece of equipment they want to take. What’s worse, you do not want to discourage them from their passions. Scenic destinations like Paris, Iguazu Falls and other iconic spots allow kids to create things from their trip without sacrificing the sightseeing potential of any given vacation.

Encourage the kids to use downtime in the morning or at night to create art, so they don’t feel the need to bring their equipment everywhere. Finally, keep an eye out for art supplies from different art museums. These usable souvenirs will mean the world to kids who just finished seeing world-class works of art.