One thing that has always been clear to those of us who have been involved in arts and health projects, both on the receiving and leading side, is the way that being creative together results in such a positive atmosphere. So many different dynamics open up between the participants. People start nervous and subdued, uncertain about being there and anxious about any one talking to them. Then they find thay have common ground in the artwork. At first talk is about the creative project but slowly people relax and open up. As sessions go on people are talking openly and humour emerges as people start to laugh and support each other. Help is given to each other. By the end of a session, where the expressions were down, they are now smiling and relaxed.
While the creative process oils the wheels, the social interaction is the cogs and gears that drives the positive benefit of creative activity. Here is what we have been up to:
A really enjoyable session this morning saw the group look at doing some surreal collage. This involved simply combining a few images to alter the reality being shown. We tried looking for a background and keeping it simple by only adding a few more images but trying to be careful in selecting images that worked we in comination. Some interesting results were achieved.
The group lookd at making simple pots. This was done by rolling out a rectangle of clay. This was then rolled to form a tube. We looked at joining clay by crossing the surface and using a slip to act like a glue. They then rolled out more clay, sat the tube on top and drew rouns it to get the base diameter and stuck the bottom on using the criss cross and slip method. After this the group added or changed the shape of their pots to how thery wanted them.
Another great creative writing session today with Maggie How. After a little free writing the group focused on haiku poems and looked at the structure and methods of composing them. Each is three lines with a total of 17 syllables in the form of 5,7,5 syllables to a line.
Here are some examples:
A moment in time
Frozen forever now in…
the minds eye secure.
Distant, lost, withdrawn.
Mind dysfunctional, awry.
Life condemns my thoughts.
Silken ribbon lights
wide open vista.
A final shaft glows
To end the longest of days
Warmth ebbs away
Using sheets of tracing paper, we worked on a series of transparent surfaces, which were set as layers, and mounted onto the windows, to take advantage of a very sunny day, and let the light filter through the different layers, adding depth, detail and more blurred images in the background.
We used a mix of paint, pencil, pen, letraset and found objects such as grass and plants, we quickly created a range of different styles of graphic art with a slightly 3D effect.
In this session the clay theme continued as it is so adaptable allowing individuals to create pieces meaningful to them. Some people made 3D pieces whilst others rolled out the clay and added to a flat design, building it up. Others in the session worked on bracelets, drawings and comic art.
Today the group had a go at designing symbols to enter an Ordinance Survey competition. They are looking for designs of ten symbols to add to maps. The symbols were he blue ones that show places of interest. They wanted symbols for things like ice rinks, skateboard parks, car char check ing points, solar farms and others. We sketched in pencil first looking to simplify designs as much as possible. Then they were drawn out in blue ready to send off. All designs top secret!