This week has been an odd one. First it involved a lot of lying down after a mad weekend at The Factory Open Studios and Kendal Summer Arts where we saw hundreds of people and sold over £400 of service user artwork. Brilliant when the prices range fro £15 to £50. Secondly we were asking people to contribute to our action plan for the next few years by giving us feedback and thoughts on the service we offer. Instead of normal sessions people were invited to tell us what they did and didn’t like and what they wanted us to add.
Funding, of course, is the drive behind this. We are looking to show to funders that over the next few years we can become more self sustaining. Generating income by running services is one way. Tapping into personal budgets and commissioning another. Also the unit we use is a resource. If we had the same level of income from its hiring out as we did last week then it would pay its own rent.
This week also saw the start of some great potential collaborations. The Lakes International Comic Art Festival is something Space2Create has supported and been part of since its beginning and this year is no different with our groups, service users and volunteers set to do o less than four windows as part of the Comic Art Window Trail. Then we also had a great meeting with Helen Isaac from Kendal Arts Community about how S2C and KAC could work together on projects and exhibitions both at our own unit and around town.
Finally, the nice stuff people say. Amongst all the feed back we were given there were many very positive comments about S2C. What was really good for those of us that run S2C is the consistent use of words like warm, friendly, safe, supportive and healing. Thank you to all those that help make it like that.
A few of our groups did run as normal and produce art:
Anne-Marie’s second session used Brusho ink powder to create interesting backgrounds. The group then traced over elements of portraits and glued these on the backgrounds when they were dry. They then added words. More work to these next week.
In Creative Writing today, as well as drawing the names for transformations, the theme was listening and writing while music was playing. This was quite difficult for some as particular music had strong memories attached and the emotional response to the music played a large part. Here is one written while listening to a slow classical piece.
The Indifference Of Pain
With no reason nor motive,…
And in no doubt of attention,
Seeking not a fact nor a means,
A destructor of pleasure,
A disruptor of plans,
No sense of direction,
Lost in a parody of time,
Feelings are abducted and ransomed,
Replaced with falsehoods,
The imagined strike of a blade,
Or impact of blows,
Only numbness can counter,
Holding progress by conscious,
Death of sensation and wonder,
To shut out the world.
The session was led by the participants themselves – so we had some very individual work being created: crocheting, collaging, comic book drawing and textile work. This enabled everyone to work on pieces important to, and chosen by, them.
Today on the ward we shaped objects and figures out of plasticine, and then arranged them in an appropriately-sized frame. In addition, we invited participants to doodle swirling, intersecting loops, and then fill the resulting shapes with patterns to create a ‘zentangle’ – a meditative piece designed to aid mindfulness and create a more pleasant focus in the moment. Both these activities proved to be very engaging, accessible and enjoyable for all those taking part.