I have just reviewed my teaching and workshop portfolio as I am responding to calls for Practitioner roles. I got together new images and re-looked at old pages. It’s quite a time-consuming task, and whilst re-jigging the content I had time to fully appreciate the range of projects I’ve been involved in. I’ve been lucky enough to work with a diverse spectrum of students in wonderful settings in and around London over many years.
It was great to remember workshops and courses I have run for pupils in mainstream education as well as excluded pupils in Pupil Referral Units. I’ve worked in mainstream schools with teaching collegues and have taught teachers about how to deliver a broad Arts Education. I have run after-school ceramic workshops for support staff and tutored young-carers taking a break from looking after family. I have loved working with special needs clients and adults with dementia and learning or physical disabilities.
All students learning about Art and Design, whatever their background or the setting, have a relationship with the materials they are using. They find ways to say something through the making process, with results which are often beautiful or surprising, but always unique. Working creatively in groups developes relationships and it’s great to share something funny or sad, to work together to find a solution to a problem, or just sit together and admire the way paint moves across the page. Being flexible and responding senstively to the needs a student may have, is very rewarding. Creating an environment that enables students to make the art they want to make, can bring about personal breakthroughs for the students themselves.
Running workshops supports my own art too. I get to spend valuable time out of the garage where I work. It’s dynamic and fun and I really enjoy learning from the students. Tutoring provides important feedback and keeps me in touch with the world. It’s a counterbalance, giving me the creative energy I need to get back to painting whilst listening to the radio.
Next month I am working with MIND Charity again in collaboration with the beautiful Turner’s House Museum, Twickenham. I am really looking forward to the thoughtful responses of the clients to the museum. This year, we will be creating artwork around the design features of the house to generate repeat patterns. Last years acrylic stained glass panels were outstanding as you can see.
The images shown represent the work of groups and individuals I have enjoyed working with.
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