Art Class – 101: Adult Education Style

I always love getting the Adult Ed flyer from our local school district.  Through the years, I’ve taken computer and health classes, Tai Chi, basket weaving, Italian, Driver’s Safety, and wood working classes.  Some of them I’ve even taken twice!  But I was never so excited about opening that flyer as I was this year, and seeing  the “Drawing for Beginners” class offering!

Before I started my Blog this past June, I had many story ideas, but I had no idea how I would illustrate them.  I knew I had photographs for some, but not all.  I considered scouring the internet for some pictures/illustrations that would support my stories, but that just didn’t seem authentic.  I approached my sister, Mary, who’s an incredible artist (she doesn’t think so) and asked her if she could illustrate my stories.  I realized the minute I asked, that it would be impossible to coordinate our schedules to support such an idea.

So, I decided to try my hand at drawing.  I’ve NEVER drawn in my life, except in grade school, I’m sure…but I don’t even have a recollection of this.  Stick figures…I know I should be able to draw stick figures.  So, my drawing began.  And I surprised myself.  Not with an idea of any kind of talent.  Far from that.  More with an idea that I was supporting my stories with illustrations that at least (hopefully) make sense, and they were mine…not from the internet.  And, to my surprise, I was enjoying drawing and coloring as much as writing.

So, when I saw the “Drawing for Beginners” class in that Adult Ed flyer, I said “this is too good to be true!”  I signed up that day, and was excited about actually being able to learn from an expert.

I went to the first class and met 4 surprises!  The first surprise was our teacher, Nafisa.  She’s my neighbor!  I didn’t know her well, and I had no idea that she was an artist.  We both sort of screamed when I walked into the room that first night.  The next 2 surprises were 2 sisters that I know from my NIA and dance classes at the YMCA.  I was thrilled to see them.  Next, Vernetta walked into the room.  Vernetta and I have worked together sporadically over the last several years.  I had no idea that she was interested in being an artist.  “Wow!” I thought, this class is going to be FUN!  There were several other students; almost 20 in all.

At the end of each class, we all put our drawings on the front table and critique and admire each other’s work.  We’re all beginners, (except for one student).  I am truly in awe at the talent in this class.  But our worldly and enormously devoted teacher, Nafisa, has planted the seed that everybody has the ability.  It’s then a matter of desire, and learning a few tricks.  She deserves a round of applause for her encouragement and dedication to a group of people who probably never imagined what they could do in an art class!

Thank you, Nafisa!!

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10 Responses to Art Class – 101: Adult Education Style

  1. mafarckle says:

    Isn’t it funny, there are never any conincidences.  It was meant to be.  Love, Patti


  2. Rachel B says:

    I love your drawings, Diane!

  3. You haven’t stopped smiling have you? I knew it!

  4. elizabeth walker says:

    Oh wow! If you have another beginners class come January, please let me know. I’m also going to check out Mohonasens continuing ed in January. I swear, I was just thinking about this while I was fixing dinner tonight. I would need to start from step 1 again. Wouldn’t it be cool for granny to be able to draw characters on Arleighs wall? Maybe something like Tinkerbell? I think I am finally starting to get an itch in life. I’ve been lifeless for to long!!

    • Diane Fiore says:

      Beth, Last night, Nafisa said she would be teaching again in the Spring. She’s going to skip the winter semester. Go for it girl!! And “lifeless”….I’m pretty sure you were busy raising 3 GREAT kids all of these years!! Hardly “lifeless”!

  5. Ann says:

    Wow! You all sound like a great group of folks. Wish I was there!

  6. Chris says:

    Hi Diane…finally got a chance to read your blog and look at some family photos and your own drawings. I love your writing and your drawings. They are so playful and expressive. It was great getting to know you better in this class and I will be following your blog. Thanks for posting all this. I learned a great deal from Nafisa and all of you! Chris

  7. Diane Fiore says:

    Hi Chris, Thanks for your encouraging words! I admire your artistic talent and your courage when choosing things to draw. You master each one, regardless of how complicated they are. Keep on drawing, and I hope we’re in a class together again…..exercise and art!

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