Today was a bittersweet day, as it was our very last PALETTE art class. The activity was called printmaking, where we were to paint on these plastic sheets and then transfer them onto our piece of paper, making 3 layers. My PAL Alice and I had both created very similar pieces that actually complemented each other well. We both laughed together at our art and said that they were “contemporary” pieces because they were made of mostly shapes, compared to some of the other beautiful pieces our other classmates created. Once we were done printmaking, we both walked together into the reception to look at all of our artwork from the semester and reflect back on all that we had accomplished. It was so wonderful to talk about our art and how similar our styles were to each other. Alice told me that she felt that she connected with people in my age group more because of our energy and that she did not like to do things with older people because they depressed her. I thought this was really interesting, especially because of our last class discussion we had about how individual people are and that their age has nothing to do with who someone is as a person.
I loved being a part of the PALETTE program this semester and especially having the ability to meet Alice. We connected so well and are extremely similar in our values and hobbies. We exchanged numbers to keep in touch and even have plans to hang out and do something later in June that we both enjoy. Before joining this program, I would have never thought that I could create such a wonderful relationship with someone who is from a different generation than I am. Alice and I are more alike than many people I know that are the same age as me, and I know she feels the same way. Age has no limits, and I now have no more fears of aging. My new relationship with Alice, and being a part of PALETTE is all to thank for that.
Today was the second to last session of the PALETTE program with my PAL, Ms. Osmalov. We painted our totem from last session and worked on the mirror painting as a part of our class project. My PAL and I decided to draw a rose, taking turns leading the drawing while the other followed with the brush. Honestly, we couldn’t have done it without each other’s help. We always relied on each other for support. At the end of the day, Ms. Osmalov said, “we are better than Pablo Picasso”, she quickly added “in our own eyes”.
I have to say, early on in the program, I was nervous meeting my PAL. Now, I can confidently say there was never a dull moment with Ms. Osmalov. I find an appreciation of how art is used as a bridge connecting different generations. Through our conversations about culture, religion and age, I realized that we have a lot in common. Thanks to the PALETTE program, I have established a solid friendship with my PAL and developed a more positive set of lenses regarding aging.
Omar Hassan, graduate student in Pharmacy.
As we wrap up our program, the remaining times we spend with one another become more and more precious. Today, we painted our vases, which are to be fired once again. It was very exciting to see how our creativity rooted from our different backgrounds. Not only was our uniqueness reflected in the structure of our bases, but also in the choice of colors. It’s incredible how close we have become with our PALs in the past few months. I have learned so much about Bertha as a person, and have also gained so much knowledge about intergenerational gaps as a whole. The biggest thing that this program has offered me was a chance to embrace aging, and to not fear what is to come. I have come to see how aging is a beautiful process and how wonderful our life experiences can be. I will take these values with me as I continue on my path to becoming a healthcare professional.
Gina Pak, graduate student in Pharmacy
In today’s activity, everyone glazed the totem vases that they made a couple of weeks earlier. Creating our totem vases were really fun because we got to use our own hands to work and mold the clay into a vase that symbolized important events or parts of our lives. My vase was simple but it had flowers on it to symbolize this beautiful tree by my house that would bloom big pink flowers every spring. Sadly, that tree has died but it was a big part of my childhood because when the wind blew and the petals would fall from the tree, they would cover the grass in a pink blanket. So, I used the glaze to paint my flowers pink and I colored the rest of the vase a mint green. Lucia’s vase had a lot of texture and I liked how she colored the top of the vase a yellow because she was very excited to put daffodils in the vase because those flowers and her vase would look great together. She also colored the rest of her vase mint green and the fact that we both chose this color was by pure chance. When we realized we both used the same colors, we talked about why we both liked mint green so much since it is a very tranquil and calming color. Lucia talked about how when she was younger she loved bright oranges but now she likes paler colors because they are more soothing. I personally never liked bright colors but Lucia and I are similar because I like pale colors. It was great doing this activity and getting to know more about Lucia and how she and I are actually more alike than we would think.
Sana Zahid, graduate student in Pharmacy.
Today the PALETTE Program took a trip to the Visual Arts Center where we divided into different classes to learn about either book making, pottery, letter press or portraits. I had the opportunity to attend the book making class. Unfortunately my PAL was unable to attend class today. However, since we were in a small class I was able to interact with some of the other PALs in the book making class which gave me the opportunity to meet new people and learn about them through the books we created. It was interesting to hear why people selected the clippings and colors they used for their book and how it pertained to their life and current feelings they had. I felt that by creating the art with them I was able to learn more about them on a deeper level that I wouldn’t have gotten to by just talking with them. We were able to laugh and help each other out with our books as a class. I enjoyed everyone sharing their creations. It is hard for me to believe that the program is almost over for the semester! I have thoroughly enjoyed having the opportunity to meet new people of different generations and learn about the many different art techniques there are. It has been such an enlightening and enjoyable experience for me.
Emily Johnson, graduate student in Dental Hygiene.