My grandma used to go to the weekly art group at her assisted living facility but recently stopped (which she didn't tell me). So when I found out I asked her why, she said because she was having a hard time with her grip and vision, and felt like people were looking over her shoulder (felt self-conscious about the quality of her work). I was pretty sad to hear that she doesn't go anymore because she seemed to really like it.
Her birthday just passed so I've put together a care package full of grandma-friendly art supplies.
At the top is a package of white Model Magic, which is this awesome clay that crayola makes. It is really clean and easy to use and air dries. Then you can paint or draw on it. I also got her a pad of drawing paper and an orange pencil bag (her favorite color, at least that's what I hear). The weird silver thing at the top is a pencil sharpener that fits both the thin colored pencils and the thick regular pencil. There's also a big eraser. I guess you can't see those last two things in this picture... Oh well.
I outfitted the pencils and paint brushes with foam for a better grip. I cut apart cosmetic triangle applicator things, cut a hole in the middle, and slid the pencils through. It was really easy to do and I think it will be effective (we'll see, though). The pencils are also triangle shaped, which is supposed to help with grip, with bumps on it, also for grip.
The foam also helps with picking up the pencils because they are lifted above table-level, as well as preventing them from rolling away.
The cool thing is that these are watercolor pencils, which means grandma can draw or color with them and then use a wet paintbrush to turn the drawing into a painting. This makes it a clean and easy way to paint. I think she can even use these on the model magic.
Also, just for the record... the pencils are made from reforested wood and the paper is made from paper recycled using wind power! Grandma has such a low carbon footprint. I guess... some people just care more than others about the environment... *smug smug smug* (Southpark reference) Maybe that makes up for the not-so-environmentally friendly brushes and clay and packaging.
I was careful not to buy the crayola products except for the Model Magic. A lot of times people feel like they are being treated like a child if they are given crayola products unless they are secure in their art making abilities. It's sad because crayola does make some awesome products but it is important, I think.
I am excited to figure out a way to modify art supplies for grandma. I hope they work out!