iPhone Photography with Blueprint 58

iPhone photography, photography with kids

Tim Merritt has been around the Paint Love community for a while thanks to his wife, Paint Love veteran artist Ellen Gadberry but this is his first time as a lead artist himself! Tim says, "I'd like to help people better understand the terrific cameras they carry every day in their smartphones. Unprecedented numbers of people carry these great cameras with them all the time! I want to help them express their vision with great photographs."  Tim worked with the teens from Blueprint 58, a mentoring program in the Adair Park neighborhood. The kids learned all about perspective, angle, and even how to get that perfect pic with a selfie stick! They put their new skills to use throughout the neighborhood and with friends.  

After the event, leaders from Blueprint 58 wrote, 

Paint Love is an organization that Blueprint has worked with a few times and we keep coming back because they make planning events simple! It is a relief knowing that once we have rounded up our group we can relax and interact with our kids during the event instead of having to be the organizer of every aspect. We love that our group has the chance to try new artistic activities with Paint Love that they may not have the chance to do anywhere else. We have had kids walk away from an event excited to try out the new skill they learn, and that is a cool thing to witness.

For example, during the event, Tim was talking with two of our middle school girls about the pictures they had taken, and he described what a great camera angle one of the girls had used and how that completely changed how the picture looked. As he was saying this, she smiled and looked really accomplished and proud of what she had done. As a group leader, this is the kind of thing I look for at events. I want our kids to feel encouraged and empowered and it was great to see that happen at this event.

Our two middle school girls who attended the photography session with Tim left excited to start taking more photos and working on their vlog, and our high school student who attended left having learned some more techniques for his photography. It is great to see our students excited about new activities and learning new skills.

Collage at New American Pathways


Penny Treese and her daughter Gabby jointly led this collage project with the kids in the after school program at New American Pathways- an organization serving newly immigrated families. 

This project had a lot of components and allowed the kids to utilize a wide variety of different artistic mediums in a single project. And Penny and Gabby kept the kids engaged every step of the way! 

Once they had donned their smocks (backwards collared shirts that hung down to their knees!) and rolled up their sleeves, the kids dove in. First, they used water colors to paint a sky-like back drop.


Next, they created a unique repeating pattern using waxy oil pastels. Then, in an unexpected turn they were told to tear up the page they just decorated into leaf-life shapes! 

Piles of torn paper aside, they next, used black paint and straws, and with careful instructions only to exhale, they created long, spindly branched trees. 


The finished product was a dark tree on a colorful sky with patterned leaves! 

Journals at Georgia Center for Child Advocacy

This is a guest post written by Paint Love volunteer Sierra Kazin. She is an art education major at Kennesaw State University.

When I volunteered with Paint Love at the Georgia Center for Child Advocacy, I worked with girls ranging from 12 to 15 years old. Since I love working with people and I love making art I felt very comfortable- it was the perfect opportunity for me to get involved in my community and I felt welcomed by the Paint Love staff. That day we had the opportunity to decorate journal covers so that the girls could use them for school and/or personal use. We were provided an array of materials and we took turns listening to each other’s favorite kind of music! I learned a lot about each of the girls and they made my experience hilariously awesome! After working with Paint Love, I left with a full heart. The time I spent with the girls and learning about their lives was truly inspiring. Since then, I have looked into art therapy as a potential career path, in hopes to one day help others through art. I absolutely love how art can become a medium for expression, self-growth, and strength. By working with Paint Love I learned that self-growth also relies on the growth of others. At the end of the day, these girls proved to me how kids or students can be our greatest teachers!