Mary Kay Hopkins of Dunmore is January’s featured Artist of the Month from the Dunmore Activity Hub.
Mary Kay recalls, “I will never forget that first day at the Activity Hub. I was convinced I was not a painter and never would be. But when I announced I was not coming back, a chorus of students, led by our teacher Jill Swersie, convinced me to return. So, I did, and the rest is history.”
Mary Kay has been painting with the group of over eight years and has completed approximately 50 paintings, a few of which she has sold.
“I retired in 2007 from a job I loved as a medical transcriptionist,” she explains. “I found myself very bored and not suited for retirement. One day, in 2008, after receiving a dreaded diagnosis of breast cancer, I was feeling sorry for myself and decided to check out the Dunmore Activity Hub.”
She found a painting class in progress and decided to join the next week, citing it as “one of the best decisions I have ever made.”
Mary Kay gets her inspiration and ideas from the “library” at the Center, snapshots of her grandchildren, cross country travel with her husband, and memories made with their son, such as the “Fishing at Sunset” painting in the front center of the photo inspired by Edisto Island in South Carolina.
Mrs. Hopkins raves about her instructor, saying, “Jill is a remarkable person and teacher, and she has a sparkling personality. We have become a family in the art class and she is our guide.
“She manages to bring out the artist in all of us with her expertise and gentle way. We all look forward to seeing each other on Monday, and for a few hours, we forget our problems and just have fun.”
Mary Kay says the Dunmore Activity Hub is a wonderful addition to this area. “It is well-managed and gets better every day day with our new director, Allison.”