Artist of the Month: Lucille Banick

Lucille Banick photoLucille Banick of Scranton is the June Artist of the Month at Dunmore Activity Hub. Lucille, who only began painting when she joined the group two years ago, finds her inspiration from the outdoors, since she enjoys fresh air and nature.

For one of her featured painting, Grazing Sheep, she painted trees and then decided she wanted to add animals and she thought of sheep.

She gets her ideas because this area has so many beautiful mountains and farmlands, and she enjoys looking at both the scenery and the animals.

Banick loves the painting class, noting, “We’re like a family and enjoy exchanging thoughts and ideas. Our instructor, Jill Sweirse, is wonderful and makes us aware of talent we never even knew we had!”

She goes on to say, “I enjoy going to painting class. It is so relaxing. Alison Boga, the director of the center, takes care of all things and informs us about other activities and events that are going on.”



Artist of the Month: Patricia Orr

Artist Pat Orr Pix

Patricia Orr is shown with her featured paintings entitled “Sarah.” She most enjoys painting portraits of her eight granddaughters.

Patricia Orr of Greentown has been named the Artist of the Month for May at the Dunmore Activity Hub. Mrs. Orr, who began painting while she was in high school, joined the painting group in February of 2016.

Her featured painting is entitled “Sarah,” and depicts her now six-year-old granddaughter when she was four years old. In fact, Mrs. Orr finds most of her inspiration for painting from her eight granddaughters.

“The oil painting class at Dunmore Senior Center has a wonderful, warm and friendly atmosphere,” Mrs. Orr explains. “That warmth encourages creativity.”

She adds that the center itself has much to offer to seniors, “Pretty much something for everyone.”

Artist of the Month: Maria Augelli-Grudeski

Artist of the Month - Maria A_G

Maria Augelli-Grudeski is shown with her featured painting, Mount Sainte Victore, after one by Paul Cezanne.

By Maria Augelli-Grudeski

I began painting in 2013, when I joined the group at Dunmore Activity Hub’s class. I remember one January night in 2013, my friend Rosemary Barrett, who is one of my art classmates, invited me to join the Hub’s art class. She said, “I have something you’ll enjoy!”

Rosemary and I had participated on the library board and Mostly Opera, so this was our third venture together.

I met Rosemary at the class, and she surprised me with art supplies, and gave me guidance. What a new passion opened up for me, along with everlasting friendships.

Our art instructor, Jill Swersie, was, and still is, so personable and welcoming. She directed me to seek art ideas from life, nature (we have fresh air sessions outside), family, and places I’ve visited. Mostly she encourages us to have fun with it.

Two friends of mine, who are former art teachers, have served as an inspiration to me. One is Louise Ray Hoban, my high school art teacher, with whom I have recently reconnected. The other is Janice Nappi, a long-time friend who brought paints to my poolside.

My first painting in art class was a sunset in winter, which required a great deal of help from Jill. Since I enjoy Impressionism, I tried that in my feature painting, “Mont Sainte-Victoire,” originally painted by French artist Paul Cezanne (1839-1906). I like the free lines and expression. In sixth grade, my teacher brought a copy of this painting in to our class and I’ve been inspired since. I think we had to memorize the painting and learn about the artist. It had a sing-song title.

Also in the photo is “The Grand Jete,” a portrait of a ballerina inspired by The Nutcracker, probably in “The Waltz of the Flowers.” Finally, there is “Starry Night,” inspired by Dutch artist Vincent Van Gogh’s painting (1853-1889). What a production that was! My classmate, Pat Riley, came to my rescue with a paint spatula, which saw me through.

In sixth grade, my teacher brought a copy of this painting in to our class and I’ve been inspired since. I think we had to memorize the painting and learn about the artist. It had a sing-song title.

All in all, every class is worth it. The center provides a welcoming atmosphere. We have tea time and tasty snacks. Our center’s director, Alison Boga, is a breath of fresh air. She is so instrumental to the center’s smooth flow.

During the holidays we have a holiday party and in the summer we have a barbeque, along with fall and spring art shows which coincide with Scranton’s First Fridays.

Our spouses are invited, and my husband, John Grudeski, who is also a HUB member, enjoyed the events and meeting our class members.

This class is just a grand time for all!

Artist of the Month: Marilyn Hope

Artist Marilyn Hope

Marilyn Hope is shown with two of her favorite paintings of a boat and a cat.

Marilyn Hope of Clarks Summit is the March Artist of the Month at the Dunmore Activity Hub.

Mrs. Hope, who started coming to the art class approximately seven years ago, explains that she was looking for a hobby and saw an article about the class in the newspaper.

“I thought I would try painting, although I had no previous experience,” she recalls.

Mrs. Hope gets her ideas mostly from pictures and searching magazines. Her two featured pieces this month include a cat painting, which reminds her of her cat who passed away a few years ago.

“My cat was huge and this picture resembles him quite a bit,” she says.

Her boat painting was inspired by her favorite place to visit in Portugal.

“That is Nazare, which is a fishing village, and in the summer, a tourist attraction,” she explains. “My late husband and I always visited in the off-season when there were not many people there. I wish I could have captured the view from the mountain above looking down–it was spectacular!”

Marilyn enjoys coming to art class each week. “Our instructor, Jill Swierse, always demonstrates new ideas in these classes, and shows us how to obtain our goals. I’ve also made new friends, which has made the class very enjoyable.

The artist reveals that the center is a nice place to visit every week. “There are many activities that can be explored and the staff is very helpful,” she notes. “And Allison, the director, is one of the center’s assets!”