Painting away the blues
April 6 – Veronica Compton still gets butterflies when she goes to an art supply store, even after years of painting and drawing.
“I love art,” said Compton. “I’ve taken every art class you can think of, from glass painting to cake-making to pottery. You name it. Everything creative, everything art.”
Originally from Lockport, Compton has a degree in commercial arts and design but has been in administrative support for much of her career. Fortunately, she was able to take advantage of her art studies in her last office job.
“I didn’t make a living doing my artwork, but my last position was at Linde Engineering. I was an administrative assistant for the department and started an arts program there where I gave classes over lunch every month,” she said. “I feel like art therapy is a great stress reliever for me in the middle of a stressful day.”
Compton’s program soon became an Employee Resource Group (ERG) and was funded by the company.
“People loved it and I love the idea of giving people a possible new hobby or helping them get rid of their stress or just getting them into art,” she said. “The joy of knowing, creating something and being happy with what you have made.”
After seven years at Linde Engineering, Compton’s post was eliminated in May 2020 due to the COVID-19 epidemic. Compton said she missed the job, but in a way it should be her layoff.
“I always made all of my artwork, so I focused on that and spent a lot more time with my kids and I figured I should do something different,” she said. “It was a shock, but at the same time I felt if it is time to make the move and you didn’t make the move, the universe would come in and create a change that you had to make a long time ago.” “
“I’m not going to lie, I enjoyed working on my art and spending it with my kids,” she added.
The story goes on
These days, Compton is teaching classes at the Lock Keeper Coffee House on East Avenue. She had previously done an art exhibition there and happened upon the owner Stacey Sonnelitter while shopping. They decided to do “Sip’n’Paint” courses.
“She is so gracious and so open and accommodating,” Compton said of Sun Litter. “We were just doing advertising and people were coming out.”
Word of mouth and social media made the class a hit, Compton said, and now she’s looking forward to showing her “rust art” at the Lock Keeper too. She has no doubt that art has helped her and will help everyone.
“People think they’re not creative and say, ‘Oh, I don’t have a creative bone in my body!’ You are so wrong! “She said. “I love to prove to them that they can do it. If it gives you something to do, when you are at home and lonely and you are not doing so well, I win.”
“Art is your friend. When no one is around, you have yourself and your own creativity. Take a brush, take a pencil, take a crayon. Chalk. Anything. I swear you will feel better.” “”