Making Cards At The Mansion

Alice and Mary working on their drawings.

Joan was resting on the couch in the hallway, but sat up when I walked by.  I invited her to join me and we walked hand in hand, to the Activities Room of The Mansion, the Assisted Living Facility I teach an art class in once a month.

Mary was already sitting at the table.  Alice and Madeline were talking on the couch.  When I invited them to draw with us, Madeline was eager, “Oh I love to draw” she said.

I handed out the card stock and gave each person a thin black marker.

Then I gave directions.

First everyone was to draw a circle any size, anywhere on the paper.  I explained how we would all get the same directions, but everyone’s drawing would look different.  The we drew a line through the circle, a rectangle, a squiggly line etc.

When everyone looked like they had an interesting drawing, we got out the colored markers and began to color the drawings in.

Madeline working on her drawing

Everyone was really into it, even Joan, who has a hard time seeing.  I gave her the line drawing I made, put a marker in her hand and told her to just feel her way around.  To move the marker in what ever direction she felt like.

Joan’s drawing
Mary’s drawing

Mary and I talked about the marks the marker made, how some were lighter than others, almost transparent and some had the same effect as a brush stroke might in a painting. When she was done, Mary turned her drawing on its side and said she thought it looked better that way.

Mary put her card in an envelope saying she would write it out later and send it to someone.

Alice’s drawing

I told Alice her drawing reminded me of looking at the earth from outer space.  She pointed out what looked like a car to her in one quarter of the circle.  She colored it pink and made two more drawings.  One looked like a topographical map and in the other she called 2 cats.

I thought this drawing had a lot of movement and energy to it.

Madeline’s drawing

Madeline always wears black, but her personality is a colorful as this drawing.  When she dropped a marker on the floor, she good-naturedly  let out a string of curses in German as she picked it up. She sang “Diamonds Are A Girls Best Friend” for us throughout the hour, remembering all the words.

When I asked her if she wanted to send the card to someone, she said if anyone saw her drawing they’d really think she lost it.  I actually think it’s a great drawing.  You can see Madeline’s confidence in each line and stroke of the marker.

I never know how interested anyone will be when I show up at the mansion to teach a class. Today we had a lot of fun, with good conversation inbetween drawing.

I left the pack of blank cards and envelopes there so anyone who wanted to could make a card.  Mary said she had a few more she wanted to make and send out.  That made me feel like the class was a success.


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