Ewha students draw portraits for elderly of Seodaemun-gu
Ewha students draw portraits for elderly of Seodaemun-gu
  • Lee Jae-lim
  • 승인 2015.04.09 22:30
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Ewha students are drawing portraits for the respected elderlies as part of the "Time machine to happiness" project. Photo provided by Seodaemun-gu Office.
An Ewha student is working on a portrait of an old woman sitting in front of her. The elderly woman has a fine complexion and beautiful eyes, along with a compassionate smile that makes it seem as if the flow of time has stopped for her.  
Between the sketches, the woman and the student chat and laugh together. They are almost like a grandmother and her granddaughter, talking about their beloved families and their life stories.
“The elderly woman I painted for congratulated me upon my admission into university and she even said that she would want me to be her daughter-in-law, because we connected so well,” said Lee Su-yeon, a freshman of Space & Design. “Most of all, we discussed how I shall finish her portrait. We decided to sketch the portrait in purple, her favorite color. I sincerely hope she likes the finished drawing.”
On March 28, 29 students of the College of Art & Design met with the elderlies residing in Seodaemun-gu to draw their portraits. The main subjects of the portraits were any elderlies who are respected in the  community, such as retired parents, senior models, and voluntary welfare workers.
The event “Drawing of Portraits for the Elderlies of Seodaemun-gu” was established by the head of the elderly-youth department, Lee Jung-geun. Lee came up with the event while thinking of how to make use of the talented student workforce to help the elderlies. While he was having a memorial service for his mother, he found her portraits, which gave him the idea of using. Other executives of the office also came up with ideas such as creating videos and making name cards, and these three events became the “Time Machine to Happiness” project. 
The ultimate purpose of the “Time Machine to Happiness” project is to help the elderlies spend their remaining years happily by looking back on their lives and newly defining themselves. It will also be a meaningful time for the participating students as they interact with the elderlies and contribute their talents.
The students of Ewha will finish the drawings by the end of April and the portraits will be exhibited in the lobby of the Seodaemungu-office until Parents’ Day, May 8. The portraits will then be distributed to elderlies as presents.
“I was surprised by the lively  and warm atmosphere of the room where students and elderlies gathered together,” said Lee Ji-young, an official of the Seodaemungu Office. “There must have been some students who were tired as they came right after overnight trips, but they all smiled brightly when they met the elderlies.
“Also, there were some adults who came without knowing the purpose of the event. However, when they encountered the students they said it was worthwhile to come and interact with the youths.”
The elderlies also participated in discussing with students what angle or color they were going to use. Both the students and elderlies left the room with smiles on their faces.

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