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Like mother, like daughter

--- Mother/daughter team among painters at Paint In

Donna Lenz Wright/The Week

(Published June 6, 2007, 1:58 p.m.)

"Mother is not the senior center, play bridge type of person,” said Judy Greenwood of her mother, Jane Lenz, both of Burlington.

“She’s very talented,” Lenz said of Greenwood. “She can do anything–painting, sewing, making jewelry, knitting–she’s really better than I am.”

“Oh, no I’m not,” Greenwood interjects.

“Yes she is,” Lenz ends the exchange.

Lenz, 93, has been painting since she was in high school. Her creativity has always been a large part of her life, Greenwood said. She was a dress designer and had shops around the area; she raised standard poodles, using her creativity in grooming; and in her retirement in Florida, she worked in a day care for the elderly before returning to the area.

“She’s always been extremely outgoing,” she said.

While looking at the different activities offered to seniors in the area, the duo found most to be too slow for them.

“We wanted something a little more exciting,” she said. “Mom agreed to join a painting group if I went with her and learned how to paint.”

They joined the Gathering, a local weekly painting group.

“Mom has been doing some very realistic painting, like her koi fish and a bluebird she just finished recently that is just terrific.

“She also does abstracts and portraitures. She’s all over the place and very prolific. She probably does two to three a week.”

Lately Greenwood has been painting florals and animals, but having the most fun experimenting with bright colors.

Greenwood has enjoyed seeing what the benefits of doing something she really enjoys is having on Lenz.

“When I paint I’m lost in another worlds,” Lenz says. “I don’t care if I eat lunch or it’s raining or whatever.

“And I don’t feel some aches and pains. I believe it does help.

“That’s the secret to growing old–don’t get lazy and bored.”

“It’s funny; we look at life differently together now,” she said. “Like when were driving down the road looking at the scenery or sky; all of sudden Mom will say, “That looks like a cobalt blue in the sky,” or “Look at that lavender in the horizon.

“We speak the same language differently now.”

7th Annual Lake Geneva Paint-In

White umbrellas mark each studio for the day on the streets of downtown Lake Geneva.

Art appreciators can watch as artists create original paintings and even take it home, or choose from their collection.

People even use the event to make connections with artists for several reasons, said Ken Weeden, event chair.

The artists featured come from all walks of life. Some have been painting for years, others are new to the scene.

“A lot of people have the artists do renderings of their homesites,” he said. “It gives people an opportunity to see the styles of the artists before they actually talk to one about doing a painting or a portrait.”

The Paint-In is sponsored by the Geneva Lakes Art Association (GLAA) and the Lake Geneva Area Chamber of Commerce, and runs June 9-10, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the sidewalks of downtown Lake Geneva. For more information, call GLAA at 249-7988.

What: 7th Annual Paint-In
Where: Downtown Lake Geneva
When: June 9-10, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
Info: 249-7988



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