Value of Senior Volunteer Artist at After-School Arts Program

18 03 2010
 

Bill Stapleton's Painting at ArtHeart

 Every Tuesday during ArtHeart’s after-school children’s art program, in Regent Park, Toronto veteran artist Bill Stapleton- in his eighties, would arrive, set up a chair and sketchbook and quietly draw portraits of the children in the studio making art. Inevitably, he would be surrounded by a hub of enthusiastic voyeurs, saying “wow, that’s me! look at the sketch of me!” Bill, a renowned artist who lived nearby, was committed to this Tuesday practice (for years!). He’d come back the following week with colour photo copies to hand out to the children he had drawn the week before. His presence lent a feeling of calm to the studio, he commanded respect, and the children could learn by watching a “real artist” at work. It helped that he was not ruffled by commotion, conflicts, or crises, he embraced it all with a sense of humour.   

Bill Stapleton


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