Gilda’s Club 07/10/12

The kids did an amazing job of creating their own flip flop books tonight!  They drew creatures onto three different pages, then made those pages into a book and cut the pages into three sections so that when they turned one flap the creature became an entirely new beast!  Some of their creations were: dogs with serpent tails, hydra dragons, Teddy bear cats and even a part ox/part insurance salesman!  Thank you to Elana Amity, John Jay Cabuay, Joan Chiverton, Joe Jurewicz, Oded Naaman and Elizabeth Winter for volunteering.

Ronald McDonald House, L.A. 05/17/12

Hooray for Hollywood and our first-ever event there! Fabulous characters strolled across our paper as we and the kids drew SpongeBob, the Hulk, Bender, Sleeping Beauty, Penguins of Madagascar, Bugs Bunny, lots of Perry the Platypus, Kung Fu Panda and many more. Thank you to our new volunteers and the RMDH L.A. kids for making this such a spectacular night!

Our volunteers:
Adam Henry: Dora the Explorer, Kung Fu Panda, Rugrats, The Iron Giant
Joseph Scott: Futurama, Rugrats, Zhu Zhu Pets
Derek Thompson: Phineas and Ferb, Futurama, The Simpsons, The Iron Giant

Bellevue Hospital, 04/03/2012

We dished up a fantastic night with the Bellevue kids, making “face plates!”  We took cardboard plates, drew characters on them and then decorated them with healthy, delicious treats like dried fruits and veggies and of course a little something from the chocolate food group.  Thank you so much to the amazing kids and to our dear volunteers, Elana Amity, Sangjun Chon, Dayna Gonzales (first timer!), Elizabeth Winter, and the woman behind the plan, our IWF Bellevue Event Leader, Jane Archer.

Encouraging Learning

We were honored to draw with this young man named, Kevin, at our Valentine’s event for families being served by the Ronald McDonald House. He brought some of his own work and talked with us about his desire to follow a career in the arts.  Long-time Ink Well volunteer, Long Island Chairperson of the National Cartoonists Society and Society of Illustrators member, Adrian Sinnott, got to draw with Kevin and recognized his promising gift.  So Adrian contacted us and made up a “starter” kit for Kevin, consisting of an art pad, pencils, and this great book on drawing the head and hands.  Thank you, Adrian, for your generosity, and good luck to you, Kevin.  Your skill, energy and enthusiasm will take you far.

Sunrise Day Camp, 03/25/12

There was an art tornado at Sunrise Day Camp this weekend!  We had tons of fun drawing with about 100 kids who all had great ideas of their own and taught us a lot about coloring mermaids, drawing new anime characters and how to sit perfectly still for a caricature too.  It was a good day.  Thanks volunteers, Ray Alma, Roberta Fabiano, Marty Macaluso, Joyce Pedretti, Tim Savage, Joe Vissichelli, Elizabeth Winter, and a great big welcome to two extremely talented new artists who’ve just joined the group, Marvel artist, Paolo Rivera and  illustrator/designer/cartoonist, Katherine Roy!  (Pics awaiting approval.)  

St. Mary’s Hospital, 03/10/12

Thank you Ray Alma, Tim Savage, Elizabeth Winter, Joe Vissichelli, Joyce Pedretti and Adrian Sinnott, for drawing with the kids at St. Mary’s Hospital this weekend! Adrian brought loads of lovely illustrated books, donated by the National Cartoonists Society, and we and the kids made bookmarks together to go inside. 

Pen Pals Program 02/22/12

This darling boy, who is staying at the Ronald McDonald House, was not able to attend our Valentine’s Day card making party so we wanted to make him something special.  He told us his favorite character is SpongeBob and that he loves pizza so we contacted IWF volunteer and former SpongeBob artist, Monica Tomova, out in Los Angeles and told her about his story and she knew just what to do. When we delivered her drawing, this little guy peeked out from behind his mother’s leg, eyes growing wide with excitement, then he ran over to us and took the drawing with a giant smile, showed his mom and smiled some more.  Thank you, Monica, for making one brave boy’s day so much brighter.

Valentine’s Party with the Ronald McDonald House Kids 02/10/12

Our hearts were happy and full on this special night where the Ronald McDonald House kids came to the Society of Illustrators for our Valentine’s Day card making party.  There was delicious food, tons of art supplies, and we couldn’t have had a better time helping the kids make cards to give to the ones they love.  Thank you volunteers: Ray AlmaAmber Alvarez, Elana Amity, Jane ArcherJoan ChivertonPedro DelgadoNina Frenkel, Abby Merrill, Anelle MillerOded NaamanFranz PalomaresJoyce PedrettiAdrian Sinnott and Elizabeth Winter.  We are grateful to the Society for hosting this event, to the Ronald McDonald House for organizing transportation and most of all to the dear kids and families of the Ronald McDonald House, thank you for showing us what love is all about.

Chicago Children’s Memorial Hospital, 12/6/11

We were thrilled to welcome five National Cartoonists Society artists at this first-time event in Chicago!  These artists and the kids of Children’s Memorial did a fantastic job making cartoon holiday cards together, and in making even more cards for those kids who weren’t able to make it down to the rec room.  Thank you thank you thank you to Brian Kelly (Event Leader and NCS Chicago Chapter President), Brian DiskinCharles BoyceAnn Farrell, and Timothy Jackson!

Mount Sinai, 12/6/11

Elana Amity, Oded Naaman and Elizabeth Winter made some fantastic, festive decorations and holiday cards with the kids at Mount Sinai!  We each took a turn on KidsZone TV then got to draw in person with more kids in the studio.  One little girl drew loads of portraits of the puppet co-host, Panina, another created a green skinned fairy princess who was friends with all the birds, and another got stacks of Rugrats drawings.  Thanks, everybody, for a great night!

Gilda’s Club, 10/28/11

We had a frightening amount of fun at Gilda’s Club’s Annual Halloween Party where we did face painting, caricatures and drawings with lots and lots and lots of kids!  Thanks, Gilda’s Club, for having us and thank you to our wonderful volunteers: Ray Alma, Amber Alvarez, Elana Amity, Jane Archer, Sergei Aniskov, Joan Chiverton, Oded Naaman, Samantha Olschan, Joyce Pedretti, Erin Shigake, Ed Steckley and Elizabeth Winter.

NYMH Sickle Cell Center, 10/25/11

IWF’s Franz Palomares drew with kids bravely undergoing treatment for sickle cell disease at New York Methodist today.  It’s very important that these children attend their scheduled checkups so we were happy to do our best to make the kids’ time at the hospital more fun!

Bellevue Hospital, 09/20/11

Jane Archer put together a wonderful night of autumn apple drawing and eating real apples that she harvested from a local farmer’s market.  She and artists, Ray AlmaJoan ChivertonJeanine HendersonEd Steckley and Karrie Witkin, asked the kids “what’s at your core, what makes you feel strong?” and then we all drew images of what makes us feel powerful, positive and fulfilled.  One boy said, “sitting in the rain” fortified him, a little girl said “learning how to draw art” made her feel strong, and another boy said, ” I’m grateful that you brought us apples, and I’m grateful that you are here.”  We are grateful to you, brave kids of Bellevue, and we are so happy you let us celebrate the arrival of fall with you!

Bellevue Hospital, 08/16/11

Who knew that thaumatropes were the most fun thing to make ever??  Well now Jane Archer, Jeanine Henderson, Elizabeth Winter and the awesome Bellevue kids do.  These kids were incredibly polite and talented.  One boy said, “I’m so happy I got to be a part of this” and another boy stunned all the adults by being the only one who could figure out how to make one of our thaumatropes work by changing the orientation of the strings’ holes.  Very impressive!  Thanks, everyone for a truly heartwarming and whirling good time!

Mount Sinai Hospital, 07/12/11

Dare we say that we totally stole the show at Mount Sinai today!!!   We had a delightful time drawing our pictures for the kids over the hospital’s closed circuit TV station.  We were able to reach 80 kids in their rooms while they drew along with us and called in to the artists as they drew.  The best part was their adorable questions, like “so if Big Bird can’t fly, is he half penguin?”  Thank you Ray Alma, Joan Chiverton, Abby Merrill, Elizabeth Winter and Karrie Witkin for bringing so much star power to our first ever TV appearance  🙂

Mount Sinai Hospital, 05/17/11

We had a fantastic time at our first event with the very talented kids of Mount Sinai!  They were all eager to learn how to draw and we were very impressed by how much they progressed in just an hour and a half.  Keep it up, kids!  Thanks to artists, Sal AmendolaPedro DelgadoOded Naaman and Elizabeth Winter.  We look forward to many more good times ahead here.  (Photos of the kids aren’t cleared yet, we hope to post some next time.)

IWF Pen Pals Program Begins!  05/09/11

We are very happy to announce the start of the IWF Pencil Pals Program, where we connect artists with children who are not physically able to come to our events.  We begin with a 12 year-old girl named, Sydney Becker, who was diagnosed with osteosarcoma in late 2010.  Sydney is now dealing with chemotherapy and all the challenges it brings with incredible strength and grace, starting a daily blog and working with her family to raise funds for pediatric cancer research.

When Sydney told us her favorite character was SpongeBob SquarePants, our great friend and Futurama artist, Joseph Scott, got right on the case, connecting us with the very talented SpongeBob artist, Monica Tomova.  Monica made two drawings for Sydney and wrote her a letter too.  Sydney says the drawings “made my day” and that she “can’t wait to hang them up!”  Thank you Joseph and Monica for giving this program such an incredible start and and thank you to Sydney whose bravery and positive attitude is an inspiration.

March of Dimes “March for Babies” 05/01/11

We had a blast face painting and caricature drawing at the March of Dimes “March for Babies” finish line.  This event supports programs and research to fight infant illness and promote healthy pregnancies.  Thank you Ray Alma, Joyce Pedretti, Karrie Witkin, and Elizabeth Winter for volunteering.

Ronald McDonald House Hope Awards, 04/28/11

Jane Archer and Elizabeth Winter got to meet many wonderful people making a difference at the Ronald McDonald House Hope Awards while Franz Palomares was across town celebrating with the great supporters of NY Methodist Hospital.  Thank you for thanking your volunteers, RMDH and NYMH!  

Ronald McDonald House, 02/08/11

The Ink Well was honored to partner with The Society of Illustrators on this wonderful night of Valentine’s Day card making with the kids at the Ronald McDonald House.  Thank you so much to Ray Alma, Elana Amity, Jane ArcherSergey Aniskov, Joan Chiverton, Rami Efal, Barbara Garrison, Jeanine Henderson, Abby Merrill, Anelle Miller, Oded Naaman, Franz Palomares, Joyce Pedretti and Elizabeth Winter who made this one full house of love and fun!

Children’s Hospital of MN, 01/15/11

Elizabeth Winter and Valerie Reupert got a whirlwind tour of Children’s Hospital during The Ink Well’s first ever event in Minnesota!  We met some incredible kids like Eli, Jacob, Joey and Katelyn and together we drew a Mermaid Man vs Barnacle Boy hockey game, lots of dogs and kitty cats, superheroes and some marine mammals too.  Thanks, everyone for a great day, we’re very happy to be up and running in Minnesota and are looking forward to many more good times together!

Sunrise Day Camp, 12/19/10

We had the best day ever with the brilliant Sunrise Day Camp kids! It was a pajama party blow out where we all decorated pillow cases, such as Joe Vissichelli‘s inspired Justin Bieber portrait for Katie, who said she couldn’t wait to wake up to Justin’s face every morning; Adrian Sinnott‘s Cat in the Hat that was as tall as the kids; Joyce Pedretti‘s Sponge Bob factory and Botticelli-like Little Mermaid, Marty Macaluso‘s portrait parade; Ray Alma‘s Iron Man and Bat Man that made one boy say, “this is the bestest day ever!”, Tim Savage‘s space ship pilot portrait of Hector, Elizabeth Winter’s doggies and ducks and flowers for Heebin, and Amber Alvarez‘s portrait of a girl who was so excited to put it up in her locker, “once I get a locker,” she said.

We kept the party going at a nearby diner before we had to go our separate ways.  It was kinda hard to say goodbye but we’ve got loads of great events on the way for 2011.  Thank you for sharing your creativity, hope and strength with these amazing children throughout all the years, dear volunteers, and a very happy new year to you!!