During the half term holidays I had fun teaching children aged 8- 12 how to create their own wire work winter characters. A really interesting experience.
I started by showing the children how to create the standard basic stand up wire model which they managed well.I then asked them to sketch out some of their own creations and if they were not sure I had some photographs to inspire them.
I was really surprised that when they tried drawing a person who was leaning down and their head lower than their shoulders that instead of drawing what was in front of them they still tried to draw the person with the head above their shoulders. Irealized that none of the under 11s had been taught the basics about for shortening etc
So I set about the task firstly by giving them some tracing paper and asking them to place it over the picture and then to draw the outline then helping them to place the skeleton and then finally to use a pen to darken the skeleton so that they had a reference guide.The children who didnt have a reference picture for what they wanted them to draw I asked them to pair up and draw each others skeleton keeping in mind the lesson learned.They then found this task much easier
It is often difficult finding new people who enjoy the same activities and interests that you do. I have always been interested in sketching outside but have always found that you spend much of your time being disturbed by well intentioned people who are curious about what you are doing and I am just to polite to be rude to them to get them to leave me alone.
One of the solutions for me has to join a local meet up group, (www.meetup.com) members come from all over the place and from many different backgrounds the one thing you have in common is the topic of the group. Now I know that groups do exist where people are not that welcoming and if the group is such that they always meet at the same place with the same people it can get a bit creaky however the clue to that is to try one or two sessions and move on to another one if it isnt for you.
I have been lucky. I joined a sketching group where members attend when they can and we spent yesterday sketching at The Vyne a National Trust Property near Basingstoke. Some people stayed together others went of on their own it really didnt matter. I think the key to the groups success is that we knew that we could find one of the group if we needed to so we no one feel as if they were on their own, everyone was supportive and helpful and non judgmental and we talked about the topic and did not dwell on our personal lives
I don’t know about you but I am one of those active people all ways doing something however I do look forward to quiet times where I can allow myself the luxury of a chance to recharge.
The early part of the year is the one time when I can do this, people don’t really want to go out they want to make the most of the few good weather days that we have. I love this time to jump start my own creativity, Ive recently been enjoying creating abstracted art works with no particular theme and focusing on texture and pattern, creating several pieces at a time and moving between them all waiting for inspiration to kick in its been great fun its something that I would recommend to anyone who is finding it hard to motivate themselves
Back in June and July 2013 I spent some lovely creative craft/ history days on behalf of Gosport Submarine Museum working with children from two local schools on a project designed to raise awareness about the fact that several of the local roads were named after submariners who had been awarded VC medals from the bravery. Many of the families living in the area have at least one member currently serving or who had served in the armed force.
Medal making Shadow puppets
I have just received a lovely email from GSM to say that Gosport Discovery Centre is currently running a exhibition about the Museum with the title Our Street Our Submarine and that the children’s work is being included in the exhibition ,it is so lovely that the children get to see their work included and that it is also going to be shown at two other local libraries as well.
We have just had another great couple of days getting ready for next Thursdays Lantern Parade . It was very busy and I didn’t stop all day on the Saturday for lunch so thank goodness I had thought to have breakfast before I left in the morning.
We are so looking forward to the parade itself we made over 80 lanterns and have sold over 40 packs and with others are being made at home we decided to make some changes this year and decided to reduce the size of the lanterns in the parade. It is so tempting to make bigger lanterns however I would advise any one planning a parade to really give some thought to both your location and the numbers of people taking part as well as observing . Their is some great advise out there when it comes to ensuring that your event is as safe as it can be.
I have received some lovely emails from schools and local groups so it is going to be really interesting to see what they have made.
I have just spent a great couple of days running lantern building workshops at the Brooks Center in Winchester. Because of space limitations I decided to spend day 1 making the structures and day 2 doing the decorating. this worked really well when your creating 40 lanterns in a day it is very tiring and changing over the materials mid way would have just been to difficult so a plan that worked well.
The next couple of workshops are on the weekend of the 16th and 17th November I am not sure if there are are any spaces left its been so popular this year, we’ve made up packs to make at home and they are going fast.
I have just spent a lovely day today making a ghost town with children at the D@rt Centre in Hedge End a small group of 6 children its amazing what you can achieve, they had so much fun imagining different ways of getting into their homes etc so much concentration they were so quiet which is very unusual.
I spent a lovely day on Saturday training up my lantern parade workshops volunteers, such a lovely group of people all happy to give up their spare time to help me to support the participants who will attending out lantern making workshops starting this week.
We attracted a large audience of passing spectators curious as to what we were doing, we were still awaiting our posters to arrive from the printers so I decided to write some details on a couple of sheets of paper so that people knew what we were up to.
Ive just spent the day moving all of our materials and equipment into our pop up shop at the Brooks Center in Winchester. The center has been great allowing us to use the space for a peppercorn rate we couldn’t do it without their support, I have put up three examples that I have made to show my new volunteers I cant wait for the ceiling to start filling with examples that they make on Saturday.
I also introduced myself to my local shop staff and Costa Coffee came up trumps when they popped in and offered to donate us free hot drink vouchers for the lantern workshop participants to have when they finish their session a lovely thought.
I spent this morning providing a art activity at the River Itchen living by the waterside information event in Bittern Southampton.
The event brought together local people living along the river and a variety of organizations who were able to offer advise about solutions for residents to reduce the risk of water damage during high flood periods
I had great creating a map of the river and inviting participants to help me to create the detail and to think about what they might like to/ expect to see in the future. The work was not completed at the end of the event and the volunteers wanted to carry on developing the work and inviting other people to add to it. ….. It is always easy to think that everything that is created should be finishes, however sometimes a work that can be added to as a work in progress is just as valuable.
Ive been so busy with the planning for this years Lantern Parade (November 28th) all of the necessary legal requirements are in place and I have been busy recruiting volunteer helpers to assist with preparing the lantern packs for sale at the Cathedral as well as volunteers to assist me during the workshops…
This years parade is different to past years , as it is a stand alone event with a 5o’s style band the Cadillacs playing in the Cathedral grounds as well as a variety of other entertainment with of course the parade were planning a celebration feel to our event
Its going to be great fun .
Ive also put together a information sheet for anyone wanting to make their own lanterns which you can find on my ….Free hints, tips and resources page
If you want to join in with this years parade either as a participant or as a a volunter please contact the Cathedral for more details http://winchester-cathedral.org.uk/event/?id=346.
I have been so busy over the summer months running holiday activities for children and working with project managing this years Lantern Parade for Winchester Cathedral that I have finally got around to taking some time of work for some well earned of in my v dub, She has now been partly rebuilt and now has a cooker sink and bed back in her, still lots more to do and I am really hoping to find the time to paint her I am going to turn her into a piece of art when I get time and I was really inspired by this great v dub to create my own version
I have just had spent a lovely day at Winchester Lantern Children Centre introducing parents to the art of face painting.
My aim as usual was to provide parents with some hints and tips that the books don’t tell you and help them to feel more confident about approaching face painting their children.
I first started face painting when my son was two years old ( he is now 25) as a means of providing a fun activity and offering a freebie to friends as a present when I didnt have very much money, in fact I often made presents or offered to provide activities as a present little did I know then that I would be where I am now.
When Ash was 8 years old and I had finished my university studies I went to work on Southampton s Play Bus for 3 years where every school holiday I trained staff to face paint ready for the children’s schemes, this carried on when I moved on to running Eastleigh Councils play schemes and over the years I have provided many subsequent training sessions as well as working at Festivals providing face painting as well as art activities in the children’s areas.
Always a useful skill t which I enjoy passing on but this was the first time that I had agreed to providing a basic workshop for parents with their children so once again the old thinking cap on deciding what tips might be of most use to parents.
I spent a lovely day teaching children aged 8+ how to make a dragon puppet out of recycled materials such as milk bottles and old ribbon tape. at the D@rt Centre in Hedge End. I have been running regular Thursday Big Art days during the school holidays for several years now it is always interesting coming up with different ideas , sometimes I provide structured activities such as making mosaics or making a willow lantern , on other days I provide a much relaxed activity enabling the children to develop an idea themselves.
Stuart and I running the Scrapstore tent at Hoglands Park Fun Day in Southampton a couple of Fridays ago Ive only just had time to post these, there were many dragon and fairy wings flying around that day we thing we helped to make at least a 100, we didnt have chance to stop just so full on , so a very productive day and lots of publicity for the Southampton Scrapstore