Back in April we hosted a 5-day workshop in partnership with Outside In, ran by artist and curator Tess Radcliffe which aimed to equip participants with the skills and confidence to design and deliver their own creative workshops. Local artist David Jones attended, and has shared his account of this insightful week…
“As a rural artist, I’m much acquainted with a sense of isolation. It’s often a joyful peaceful existence working nestled deep within nature, although one I was finding increasingly difficult to navigate….with a sense of disconnection from the broader world growing with in me.A month ago I was happy to see a call out in the quiet local artist Facebook pages to apply for a 5 day Workshop in creating creative workshops, hosted by Coventry Artspace. A week later, ecstatic to receive an email inviting me to participate. Now several days on from finishing the course a moment to reflect on an unbelievably nurturing, fun, supportive and informative experience.
On the 11th floor of a high rise, in a large room adjacent to artist studios…..myself and seven creatives received a lovely, warm welcome from Coventry Artspace. We were then introduced by the two course leaders from Outside in. The group and course leaders bonded quickly……there’s something magical being in a room with other creatives.
Throughout the Week we became familiar with each other’s work, dreamt our perfect workshops, learnt how to plan against and navigate disasters and bit by bit……initially as teams, then as individuals created ideas and mini workshops for each other. Behind all this was the backbone of in-depth learning that a modern workshop holder is required to be familiar….Health and Safety, risk assessments, safeguarding, data protection. Towards the end of the week we explored organisations who support and enable artists producing workshops and how to write successful proposal to those organisations.
I’m now back within rural Warwickshire, with so much that has changed. I once more feel reconnected, supported and part of the arts community. Each morning I receive updates and new information for further exploration from the course leaders and fellow participants…..so many new connections and new paths of exploration.
I will end this blog by highlighting how inclusive and brilliant training like this can be, it provides nourishment on every level. When I applied I had doubts that the course would be for me…..did I meet the requirements? Was I a good enough artist to qualify? Could I make the time to attend? Luckily I was able to put such doubts aside, put a careful hour aside to write my application and asked a supportive friend to proof read it.”