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East End Arts, and watercolour artist Christine Walker, are excited to present an internal program with the Applegrove Community Complex: Food 4 Thought! Read on to learn more about how this program is growing into the fall of 2020.

Food 4 Thought
East End Arts & Artist Christine Walker
June-December, 2020
Location: From the comforts of home for participating seniors
Cost: Free to seniors through Applegrove
*Please note that this program is not open to the public for participation

In June of 2020, East End Arts, Applegrove Community Complex, and the East End United Regional Ministry introduced a new program working with local seniors accessing the Glen Rhodes Food Bank – Food 4 Thought! Food 4 Thought originated as a series of weekly art activities, focused around recipe sharing and story-telling to help keep spirits up while we all stay at home. Along with a weekly food basket, East End Arts and our partners delivered arts and craft supplies to participating seniors in June and July, as well as a weekly set of creative prompts to spark the imagination, as well as feed the soul.

Now for September of 2020, Food 4 Thought is growing into something new and entering a new online phase! Currently our amazing group of senior participants are working their way through the watercolour workbooks they were sent, and we recently held our first Zoom class with lead artist Christine Walker. We are excited about some of the new and exciting ways we will get to continue this program digitally, which will include a whole series of online classes; we have fallen in love with the seniors from the Applegrove community, and with their recipes and stories.

While we’d originally planned to meet in person this fall with our participating seniors, we’ve all agreed that online classes offer a safer environment for everyone to get the most out of this program! Stay tuned for more news about how we are working with this incredible community of elders into the fall and winter seasons.

About the Weekly Creative Prompts

Each week in June and July of this past summer, seniors throughout the east Toronto community received creative prompts alongside a weekly food basket from the Neighbourhood Food Hub. Some prompts were text-based inviting participating seniors to remember places near and far, and some were visual arts-based using the arts supplies provided.

For example, Week One Prompts:

    What is your favourite “lean times” recipe, and where did you learn it? We all love to stretch a dollar – let’s share some of our favourite recipes and memories around them.
    In addition to your story, don’t forget to include the recipe! You can write your recipes out by hand, or you can include a printed clipping.
    Illustrate a bowl of hearty soup or cereal. It could be realistic or imaginary!
    Blotting with cotton swabs or tissue to remove colour. You can also add paint to the cotton swabs to act as a stamp.

    Alcohol- consider dropping alcohol onto the artwork to create circular shapes- like many breakfast cereals!

About the New Online Zoom Classes

For the fall and winter season of 2020, East End Arts, alongside our lead artist Christine Walker, will host online art zoom classes for our participating seniors! Classes will focus on learning new watercolour skills and creating a supportive online community to be creative and have fun.

About the Lead Artist: Christine Walker

Christine Walker is a painter and an arts educator who currently lives in East Toronto. She has been a Visual Arts teacher with the Toronto District School Board for 16 years, and is very passionate about quality arts education. Christine has her Master of Fine Arts degree (MFA) from OCADU, her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree (BFA) from NSCADU, and a Bachelor of Education degree (BEd), with Arts qualifications from Kindergarten to grade 12. She is experienced in Oil, Acrylic, Encaustic and Watercolour painting, and enjoys creating in all forms. Her current paintings combine Watercolour and Acrylic painting, with a focus on birds often seen in East Toronto. She is currently working with an author to illustrate a children’s book, and completing commissioned paintings.

Website  |  Instagram  |  Facebook

Sponsor A Senior!

(Please note that while we are no longer delivering weekly art kits to seniors, we continue to accept donations to help support this program overall, especially as it continues to adapt and grow in new ways into the fall and winter seasons!)

You can help support this program by Sponsoring A Senior! Donate $65 to East End Arts today, and you will help support a Food 4 Thought Kit, which includes:

  1. A Journal – A place to record journal entries or poems or rants, for the weekly “text prompts”. When the project is over, we will collect these to make digital versions to be displayed in some way at the Neighbourhood Food Hub, and to include the journals themselves as part of our library!
  2. Paint Brushes – A selection of brushes chosen just for this project.
  3. Hard Palette Watercolour Paint – A selection of good quality colours in various sizes and colours.
  4. A Water Soluble Pencil – To draw outlines for the art prompts.
  5. Pencil Crayons – For the colouring book, of course.
  6. Adult Colouring Pages – All from local Toronto artists!

Please note that there is no cost to participate for Applegrove seniors. If you are a senior experiencing food insecurity, we encourage you to contact the Neighbourhood Food Hub at Glen Rhodes.



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