News Post

Drawing for a Newfound Friend

"It's easy to get wound up in the stressors of everyday life, but being in the midst of someone who's lived through it all is surprisingly uplifting yet grounding." —Olivia Paulek '19

Students in Bill Colburn's Advanced Drawing — Human Condition class created more than works of art this semester; they created relationships. Once a week for four weeks, the students called on residents of Jones-Harrison, an assisted living facility for seniors located in Minneapolis. Each student paired up with a senior, who they got to know during the visits, then drew a portrait of their partner for the resident to keep. The portraits were showcased at an open house holiday party for Jones-Harrison residents and their families.

While the seniors received the finished artwork, Blake's students expressed appreciation for the gifts they felt they received. "The Jones-Harrison experience was valuable to me," says Grace Vojta '19. "It gave me the unique opportunity to connect with someone who is part of not only a different age group but also a different culture than my own. I don't often get to do that."

Emily Starkman '21 agrees: "I really value my time at Jones Harrison because I got to interact and create a friendship with someone I otherwise wouldn't have. And I'm really grateful for that."

Find more photos on Blake's Flickr site.