Participants of the Aging Artfully program’s first run of classes in the fall of 2017 work on their masterpieces. The program is starting up again this March at the MAC. — Submitted by Rosemary Fontenla

Free seniors’ painting program to resume in Parksville

Aging Artfully offers acrylic, watercolour classes for those living in own home

After a successful first run of classes in 2017, Aging Artfully is back this spring with free watercolour and acrylic painting classes for seniors who are aging at home.

Available to those aged 75 and older, the program seeks to offer a social and artistic learning opportunity to seniors who don’t have care home programs and shared living spaces available to them. These programs are already taking place at many local care homes through the same organizers.

The Aging Artfully program runs through public donations, government and gaming grants and the support of the McMillan Arts Centre, the Oceanside Community Arts Council and volunteers. It will start up again March 14.

Its first set of classes started September, 2017, and had 18 participants for 12 classes (expanded from eight) with an acrylic and watercolour class, said Rosemary Fontenla, OCAC Seniors Art Program co-ordinator and a teacher with Aging Artfully.

“Most of the people that came last year really enjoyed it, and some of them are coming back,” said Fontenla, who noted that all the art supplies for the program are provided and that participants get to take their work home.

One of those returning participants is Louise Duncan from Qualicum Beach.

No stranger to art, Duncan has a degree in fine art and works in photography, but hadn’t picked up a brush in a while.

Now in her late 70s, Duncan said she’s joining or already participating in various programs and groups to keep busy, keep learning, get out in the community and meet new people.

“I live by myself,” she said.

“I’ll be 79 this year, and so as you get older… people have a tendency to draw in and not do anything, you know? They just start sleeping longer, watching more TV, and not even going for walks. So it’s very difficult to meet up with people at this age,” said Duncan.

“So this is a way of keeping connected with the universe, with the world.”

She said she enjoyed the Aging Artfully classes, saying they were relaxing and that the teachers were helpful in giving pointers while not restricting what participants wanted to paint.

“I thought it was great,” she said.

The spring program begins Wednesday, March 14 and goes to May 2, running Wednesdays from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m., raid Fontenla.

There are 20 spaces total. Fontenla added that, while classes are free, those who are able to give a donation may do so if they choose.

To register, call the MAC at 250-248-8185 and ask about the Aging Artfully program.

For those who have no way of getting to the MAC (133 McMillan St. in Parksville), a trip with the SOS bus can be arranged.

Send news tips to:

Just Posted

Woodyatt seeks help to pursue physics education in London

Ballenas Secondary product gets accepted to prestigious university in United Kingdom

Solar system spending, asbestos removal in SD69 plan

Green house gas emission report received at May 22 board meeting

Gr. 7s learn about digital safety, health, consent at con in Parksville

SD69 hosts first Health and Wellness Conference for students headed to high school

Qualicum Beach east village plans take shape

Staff moving forward with east village concept

Three-for-one at Parksville studio for tour

Local artists participating in Central Island Studio Tour May 26-27

VIDEO: Meet some of the Vancouver Island Tribute Festival performers

The NEWS speaks with Elvis, Liberace tribute artists and others before they go on parade

Passersby help rescue occupants of home as fire breaks out in Courtenay

Coffee run turns into fire rescue for pair of men

Giant beer tanks arrive in new B.C. home city

Molson Coors tanks finish river journey and move to overland trip in Chilliwack

VIDEO: Pipeline supporters rally across B.C.

Five simultaneous events organized by month-old Suits and Boots lobby group

VIDEO: B.C. woman praises burn fund after boat explosion in 1978

White Rock woman was 16 years old when she was left with second- and third-degree burns

B.C.’s Ryan Craig, Vegas Golden Knights chase history

Local product behind bench for expansion team’s incredible championship run

CP rail workers give strike notice

Employees could walk out as early as Tuesday at 7 p.m. PT

RCMP investigating after gunshots fired in Courtenay

Comox Valley RCMP officers are investigating after gunshots rang out in Courtenay… Continue reading

Vancouver Island wife brings husband back to life with CPR, thanks to 911 dispatcher

‘The dispatcher literally taught me CPR over the phone’

Most Read