No other job has such delicious rewards....
New Year, new Project Cafe website!
No other job has such delicious rewards....
It was an absolute pleasure to be asked back to work with GCIN, in their lovely community flat. We were working on artwork for Glasgow's '16 Days of Action' against domestic violence. The session focussed on the themes of "Peace in the Home to Peace in the World". Working with artist Belinda Gilbert Scott, we explore Matisse's Cut outs, looking at how we could communicate these themes using abstract shapes and colour,
The workshop was great fun with everyone getting on board and creating some lovely work. The finished collages will be made into posters to be exhibited around Glasgow- Keep your eyes peeled!
Here are some images of an Artist Book I made recently that tells the incredible story of Derek Cummings experiences of being diagnosed, and living with, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease.
Derek is an inspiring man who writes a beautiful blog. Thankyou Derek for helping me with my work by giving me such an invaluable insight.
Since completing my Masters at Glasgow School of Art, I'm continuing to explore the visual communication of illness narrative. This is a video sketch exploring the impact of chronic illness on sense of identity. It was made in collaboration with the narrative's 'owner' during my course.
Here is a little explanation of my idea....
States of health and identity are intrinsically linked. In popular culture the dominant narratives of ill health that we see are ones of recovery, heroism and 'battles' with cancer to be overcome. However, almost one in 3 people have a long term health condition.
Our understanding of illness and health are underpinned by narrative. Illness narrative in popular culture is dominated by rhetoric of the ‘battleswon with cancer’ and the ‘incredible-against-the-odds’ story. Termed the Restitutional narrative, these stories fuel“the almost total erasure of both the powerfully pervasive (yet “mundane”) experience of chronic illness. This pattern of exclusion of the chronically ill can be understood as effort to exclude people who “embody both the physical failure of medical practice” (Wagner 2000) and marginalize those that cannot return to their original ‘non sick’ state.
The establishment of a ‘truer’ and more authentic illness narrative has the potential to promote empathy and reduce stigma,by leading practitioners and the general public to “acknowledge that the illness narrative has many potential interpretations but that the patient is the ultimate author of his or her own text” (Jones 1999).
This video is part of my Master project exploring the potential of illustration to expand people’s understanding of what it means to be chronically ill, and to hear the voices of people marginalized by ill health.I feel that this is particularly important to explore in a political climate that promotes mistrust and skeptism towards people who require continued support for their conditions (Birrel 2013).
This has to one of my all time favorite commissions! It's a menu for an incredible Local Food Buffet that was put together by Glasgow's Project Cafe, with food donations from Community Gardens all over the city. It has a fun screen printed back and folds up nicely- I only had to get 50 copies out so we had a lot of fun being creative with the design. Thank you Propagate for having me! More info about this amazing event here!
Thankyou Clem Sandison for your great photies!
I have been super busy this week with preparation for Propagate- an event bringing together local food producers and business. Today I have been putting the finishing touches to the screen printed menus- here is a view of my messy working!!
and look at all the amazing food that has been delivered by Glasgow's community gardens for the buffet tonight!
I'm working with Glasgow Local food network at the moment on some resources about growing your own food. On a particularly sunny day I went down to Woodlands Community Garden to do some drawing, and collect some delicious edible flowers...perks of the job! This is a really exciting project- I'm interested in exploring Glasgow's local food revolution further in a personal project I am about to begin, more info soon!
Courtesy of the lovely Helik van Rynswould, take look at her great work here
What an amazing time we had at Moving Minds, the opening mini-festival for the Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival. We were running a weaving workshop (myself and my glamorous assistant, Sarah). We asked people to contribute to our, for want of a better title, 'Tapestry of powerful feelings'! I have posted a few photos here, but there will be more because the paparazzi where active all day!
The theme of the SMHAFF this year is Power. This is a really exciting in terms of its wide range of meanings- we could think about politics, autonomy, rights, voices and levels of mental health. What we chose to focus on was how powerful our emotions, or feelings, can be, and how it is often these most powerful of feelings that we consider when we are talking about mental health.
We asked people to think about a situation in their lives, or an experience they have had, which was particularly powerful emotionally. We then asked them to respond to this experience in colour- using fabrics, bead, buttons and wool. This sounds so simple- but everyone got so involved! It was incredible to see the results. One of the most powerful parts was the little tag we asked people to contribute to communicate what experience they were thinking of. From births, deaths, psychosis and war- no one shied away from engaging with truly powerful moments. I feel so privileged to have been given such insight into people’s lives! Thank you everyone who contributed, and Sarah, who is amazing and explaining things and engaging people. And Thank you also to the Felin Uchaf Centre in Wales, who donated the wood that the loom is built from.