“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” — Maya Angelou
During the past year of the pandemic, seniors in assisted and nursing homes have been protected from the virus with no visitors allowed. While that policy protects them, it has resulted in loneliness and isolation from family, friends and each other in the senior homes.
One of the ways I thought of to help brighten a senior’s day is to create what I love and give it away! At the beginning of the lockdown, I discovered YouTube watercolor tutorials through Let’s Make Art and painting quickly became a passion! After filling my portfolio with several pieces of personal art and learning basic techniques, I really wanted to find a way to share it in the community. A local senior center advertised in our high school newsletter for pen pals, so I simply asked them if they could use some inspirational cards. The answer was, “Yes!”
Here is a quick, colorful way to create cards to brighten another’s day. It’s called Line and Wash!
Quick Wash [10 min.]. On a small piece of watercolor paper (I used 3″ x 4″), paint some areas of colors; literally blobs of colors! I used Winsor & Newton watercolor paints: phthalo blue and purple (mix of phthalo blue and alizarin crimson) for the flower petals, yellow ochre for the flower center and a few touches of alizarin crimson while the paint was still wet. Let dry thoroughly.
Quick Line [10 min.]. Using a micron archival ink pen (or other waterproof ink pen), loosely draw flower petals, seeds, shading, petal lines, stems and random dots. The key is loose – it’s a quick line drawing to give the impression of flowers and stems.
Splatter [1-2 min.]! With a bit of paint on your brush, dip into your water cup and tap the brush on a straight finger or another paint brush to put a few splatters in the white areas surrounding the flowers. You can use just one color, or a few. Have fun with this!
Make the card [5 min.]. Using a glue stick or a tape runner, adhere the flower painting to the front of folded colored cardstock paper. On the inside of the card, glue a piece of white card stock or any white paper on the inside right page, for easier message writing.
Options. You can set up an assembly line of paper so you can create a few at a time. Use a gold or silver metallic permanent paint pen to draw accent lines or dots. Add a piece of vellum with an inspirational word on it.
Have fun being creative and try new designs with each card. Your thoughtfulness will be sure to brighten someone’s day!
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