A CARE home resident (doreen) has been encouraged to get back to painting after suffering a stroke – and her artworks have been transformed.
Doreen Newbound, 88, was admitted to Aden House Care Home, in Clayton West, near Huddersfield, in November 2018, after the stroke rendered her left side paralysed.
The former artist, who had taken to painting after watching a TV show on water colours, used to produce landscapes of her local area.
She had previously painted her local church, St Augustine’s, in the nearby village of Scissett, among other landmarks. She would donate the finished pieces to the Women’s Institute to sell at their annual fundraisers.
Doreen said: “If I hadn’t watched a TV programme of a lady painting, I would never have had a go.”
However, she had to give up her passion due to the debilitating effects of the stroke.
After moving into Aden House Care Home, staff discovered Doreen’s love of painting, and encouraged her to start again with the support of activity coordinator Marcia Bowker.
When Doreen put down her brush and declared her first landscape complete, Marcia was surprised to see she had only painted half the canvas, leaving the entire left side blank.
The stroke had also affected Doreen’s vision in her left eye and, therefore, she wasn’t aware half the painting was unfinished.
Despite this, both Doreen and Marcia agreed the half-painted canvas conveyed a strong message about the effects of stroke.
Marcia said: “When Doreen was finished painting, we were surprised to see half the canvas perfectly blank and a beautiful landscape on the other half.
“We knew the effect Doreen’s stroke had, but it was still a surprise to see this almost perfect line down the middle of the canvas where the painting stopped. She was completely unaware of the left side of the canvas.
“We felt it actually added a strong message to the painting, showing that while a stroke doesn’t stop you pursuing the things you love, it clearly has a significant impact.”
Since Doreen has rekindled her passion for painting, the home has decided to host an exhibition of her work during National Care Home Open Day, between 2pm to 4pm, on Friday, 28th June.
Anyone is welcome to visit the home, on Long Lane, Clayton West, to see Doreen’s paintings, as well as look around the facilities and speak to staff.
Davina Hemingway, home manager at Aden House Care Home, said: “National Care Home Open Day is a great opportunity for Doreen to showcase her work for others to see.
“We’d like to welcome as many visitors as possible throughout the day, so please feel free to pop in, have a look around and ask any questions about our facilities and services.”