Patricia Bennett


Monday, November 19, 2018

Tocqueville Society Live Painting Inner City Baltimore School

Cover of Tocqueville Society's 2018 Book featuring Live Painting by Patricia Bennett

Inset of the Tocqueville Society's 2018 Book

End of Day, Live Painting of Maree Garnett Farring Elementary School Children Playing, photo by Patricia Bennett

Maree Garnett Farring Elementary School Children Playing, painted by Patricia Bennett

The United Way of Central Maryland's Senior Vice President and Chief Principal Gifts Officer Holly Hoey called me in March 2018 to see if I'd be interested in painting children playing on the playground at one of the struggling schools in Baltimore City, a school that the United Way has been involved with, The Maree Garnett Farring Elementary School.

sketch of the playground composition, by Patricia Bennett
I was thrilled and honored to be thought of for this.  The painting of these children playing was going to be used as the cover of the book for the generous people of the Tocqueville Society, a special group of donors to the United Way of Central Maryland.

My homework was to see the playground.  The playground depicted would be at the Boys and Girls Club next to the school, as it was a very nice playground.  Natalie Dixon showed me the area in April.  I took photos and did sketches and figured out a design for the painting which fit the format of the book (the center of the painting was to be the spine of the book, so I made that a pole on the playset, and there needed to be symmetry to the activity in the painting.)

May 3, 2018 was the day.  I arrived around 9:30am and started painting.  I had an umbrella to keep off the sun.  The children arrived with their teachers and Holly from the United Way and ran and played.  It was a very hot day.  They were extremely curious about the painting and enjoyed finding themselves and their classmates in it.
Patricia Bennett painting Maree Garnett Farring Elementary School children playing, photo by Holly Hoey

Patricia Bennett with some of the Maree Garnett Farring Elementary School children depicted in the painting, photo by Holly Hoey
It was a delightful experience for me to meet these children and to be involved in a small way in the wonderful work that the United Way is doing.

Thank you to everyone at the United Way, especially Holly Hoey and Natalie Dixon.  And whoever designed the book is incredibly talented. 

United Way of Central Maryland
1800 Washington Boulevard, Suite 340
Baltimore, MD 21230
Phone: 410-547-8000

Maree Garnett Farring Elementary School
300 Pontiac Ave, Brooklyn, MD  21225, United States

Boys and Girls Club
3560 3rd Street
Brooklyn, Maryland 21225

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