Local News

Cary Seniors Learn More Than Just Painting In Art Class

Posted July 18, 2001

— Not many people can sit down and paint a landscape, but some seniors in Cary are learning how to do just that, and their class is about more than just art.

As a former police officer, painting is a change of pace for Dan Dzamba, and a way to enjoy his retirement.

"I have the time and I wanted to put it to use instead of sitting in front of the television so many hours a day, and (this) just seemed liked a worthwhile thing," said Dzamba.

Dzamba and others at the Cary Senior Center are getting the chance to explore their creativity in a new Art Therapy program.

Once a week, Dr. Winnie Ferguson teaches a painting class that she says will help increase memory retrieval, self-expression and self-esteem.

"It's like, well, I'm not old, retired and useless. (They can say) look what I can do -- so there's a lot of self-value because of that."

Ferguson says many adults do not get involved in art because they were intimidated by it earlier in life. For Leticia Johnson, that came from her brother.

"My brother was the drawer in the family and he did it so well that I never Never, never (tried)," said Johnson.

Now that Johnson is retired and has the time, she says she is ready to let her true colors shine through. Already she has learned that she is creating more than just a landscape. She is developing a talent that will make others green with envy.

"I mean, I surprise myself because I like it, and I keep saying, oh my goodness, I did this!"

The class takes place every Wednesday at the Cary Senior Center. The program was started through a partnership with the Cary Fine Arts League.


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