Graphic Novel Programming
Creating Comics with the Creative Aging Program

With the expanding senior community in America, geriactric studies and programs have increased substantially to accomodate. Over time, several medical studies, including that of Bruce Miller (MD), have found that "the aging brain responds well to art by allowing the brain’s two hemispheres to work more in tandem. This ability to use one’s creativity throughout a lifetime and the impact of crystallized intelligence gained from the years of accumulated knowledge and life experiences, help to cultivate the aging, creative brain."

It is with this in mind that centers like the National Center for Creative Aging (NCCA) were created. NCCA "is dedicated to fostering an understanding of the vital relationship between creative expression and healthy aging, and to developing programs that build upon this understanding." Their programs have been implemented in community centers and libraries nationwide in a variety of art disciplines including dance, painting/drawing, and writing.

According to a Simba study in 2010, nearly 25 percent of comic book readers are over the age of 65. Combining the efforts of NCCA and a pleasure shared among an aging community, hosting a Creating Comics program for the senior is fulfilling way to contribute to the creative expression and healthy aging of the senior community.

While librarians are often relied on to run and coordinate these kinds of programs, comic creation seminars have gained popularity nationwide causing groups like the Comic Book Legal Defense Club (CBLDF) to provide additional assistance in supporting these programs. CBLDF supplies libraries and schools with a comprehensive list of artists in every state whom would be willing to teach comic creation classes. 

By combining the creative expression of art with the memory retentive properties of story telling, comics are one essential way for senior citizens to maintain a healthy aging lifestyle.