Friday, December 25, 2015

Painting Workshop at Junta Blind Centre

Esha conducted its Annual painting workshop at Junta Blind Centre, Gurgaon. I was one of the facilitators for the workshop and what I learnt was something I would like to share.
The students at the training centre who had newly joined with an average age of 20 had never painted before. Art and painting which is a representation of visual impression is something they feel is not for them. The students were sceptic and smiled asking us not to embarrass them which just shook us up.

We felt Art, Sports and other activities are for all and neglecting them for disability is also a form of non-inclusion which is equally important as working for an inclusive environment outside.

There are relatively easy art adaptations to make it accessible to students who are visually challenged. The students can explore a variety of art materials, the activity can be made more tactual for them to touch and feel.

Verbal instruction on the simple steps of making a card:
  •   Fold the ends of the paper and feel the ends to ensure the corners are in alignment
  •  Bring the front side on top
  • Ensure students understand what they are going to paint (house, mountains, sun, flowers or butterflies). It is fine to not produce exactly the same image as it appears in reality which will limit their imagination. The association can be taught through Art.
  • Location of the art materials to be informed to the students by helping them look at them with their hands and fingers
  • Using fingers to measure as you draw and paint them with thumbs and brushes
  • Using tactful borders using crayons or markers which can be felt and painting can be done within the boundary
  • Vegetable painting – Ladies finger, onions and beans to make beautiful tulip flowers and butterflies by painting on the veggies and printing their impression
  • Finger painting – Tearing and folding paper, painting with fingers and feeling the image develops hand strength for the kids
  • Scent and other pleasant fragrance can be added to the paint to get a better feel

The students had a wonderful day more than making greeting cards they enjoyed painting and got rid of their inhibitions.

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