The Somerset County Library System of New Jersey’s (SCLSNJ) Hillsborough branch kicked off its Creative Aging workshop series thanks to an in-kind grant from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts.

In early August, teaching artist Margaret Fanning presented pen and ink techniques and guided participants in the creation of illustrations based on still life objects.

“Creative engagement, and the joy that is found through pursuing such endeavors, fosters a healthy and happy older adulthood (55+),” said Jen Sulligan, adult services department supervisor. “I am so happy to be able to apply my arts-based education experience in the library setting and inspire the older adults in the community to create and enjoy.”

Additional arts programs will be hosted in-person monthly:

“Creative aging programs honor older adults as creative and social learners,” continued Sulligan. “Skills-based arts learning, in a socially supportive environment, yields multiple benefits for older learners—not the least of which is its intrinsic value in reducing social isolation. There is great potential in older adulthood, as it is a time to grow, reflect, and make meaning. A different visual arts technique or medium will be explored during each workshop. Sometimes we will learn about artists or art movements as well.”

All supplies will be provided by the Library. As a note, creating art can be messy; keep that in mind when choosing the clothing worn to the program. Registration is required for each arts session.

The Hillsborough branch is located at 379 South Branch Road in Hillsborough. To register for an upcoming creative aging workshop, visit sclsnj.libnet.info/events, call (908) 458-8420, or email hillsborough@sclibnj.org. To discover all SCLSNJ has to offer, visit SCLSNJ.org or connect with SCLSNJ on FacebookTwitter, or YouTube.

To learn more about creative aging, visit nasaa-arts.org/nasaa_research/creative-aging. To learn more about the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, visit nj.gov/state/njsca.