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North Shore Volunteer Spotlight: Elaine Cha

North Shore Volunteer Spotlight: Elaine Cha

Elaine Cha is an Artist Mentor at the North Shore Studio. She has been with us for a few months and has blown us away with her rapport and observational drawing skills. She is currently a senior at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois studying Human Communication Sciences. She recently sat down with North Shore artist Rebecca Turner for our Volunteer Spotlight.

Elaine Cha: The first question that we are going to ask is, “How did you hear about The Arts of Life?” Can you read that with me?

Rebecca Turner: Not really.

EC: Okay, well, thank you for sitting with me then. The way I heard about The Arts of Life was actually through the website. I was looking for an opportunity like this that involved art and working with people.

RT: Yeah.

EC: So, it isn’t really word of mouth, but me searching it out using the internet. Okay, and the next question is, “Did you know any of the artists before you started volunteering?”

RT: Mhmm, I have no idea what you are talking about.

EC: Well, I am one of the volunteers here at The Arts of Life.

RT: You are? Mhmm.

EC: And I come two days a week. It turns out that I went to high school with Cole. Do you know Cole? 

RT: Yes.

EC: I went to High School with him at Stevenson. I didn’t really know him, so I don’t know if that counts.

RT: No, I don’t know what you are talking about.

EC: And then, I also went to church when I was a little, little girl with Danny Frownfelter. So, I know him from there. Other than that…

RT: I don’t know what you are talking about.

EC: Okay, that is fine. Thank you for sitting with me with me though. Let’s see, so the next question for me is “What do you like about The Arts of Life?”

RT: What do you like about The Arts of Life. 

EC: Uhuh. 

RT: I like to art-making and watercolors.

EC: Ah, you are very good at that.

RT: And we do our stories and schedules, so…

EC: What I like about The Arts of Life is I didn’t really have an opportunity to do art in college. So, this a good opportunity for me to reconnect with art and painting. Of course, I like the people, like you Rebecca. *pauses* What kinds of work do you do when volunteering. 

RT: Taking a tour, 

EC: Mhmm.

RT: with all the people

EC: Mhmm.

RT: And that’s about it. 

EC: So, the kind of work that I do, as a volunteer, is that i help people with decision making, getting supplies,

RT: *giggles* Uhuh, yeah.

EC: preparing lunch,

RT: Yeah

EC: set up and clean up,

RT: Yeah *giggles*

EC: and what else do we do? do we go on walks?

RT: Yeah.

EC: And for specific artists there are more individualistic things. Like, I help you with your list and stories in the morning.

RT: Yeah.

EC: The next question is, “What do you like the most about being a part of the studio?”

RT: I don’t know what that is.

EC: Okay well,

RT: Being a part of the studio?

EC: I can answer that one. I really like being a part of the community. It is very clear this is not just a set of individuals, but a group that has come together, right? It is a group and it is kind of like a family. Do you feel that way, Rebecca? 

RT: Yeah.

EC: The next question is, “Are you an artist?”

RT: Yes. I am an artist.

EC: You are an artist. I am currently a student, not focusing on art, but I do love painting on my own time. I have been a part of several art shows and competitions. I would say I am an artist by hobby, not by occupation. 

RT: Noo.

EC: “Who is your favorite famous artist?”

RT: I have no idea.

EC: Hmm, well this is kind of a shoe in, but it is Monet. Do you know who Monet is?

RT: I have no idea.

EC: Well, he is an impressionistic painter. I think we studied him a month ago with the lily pads.

RT: Yeah.

EC: Well, I love his color choices and the way everything has a soft edge to it. *pause* The last question is, “What do you do when you are not at the arts of life?”

RT: I don’t know.

EC: I can tell you what I do when I am not at The Arts of Life.

RT: *giggles*

EC: When I am not at The Arts of Life, I am a student at Northwestern University studying Human Communication Sciences and I am just about to graduate. I am currently applying for medical school and will hopefully be pursing that route.

RT: That’s nice. 

EC: *giggles* Well thank you for sitting with me Rebecca, and for listening. I really appreciate it. 

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