Create a Patchwork Trees

Some beautiful, cheery trees bursting with colour, made by children age 4 – 10yrs (and their adults!) who joined me for my first on-line workshop via Zoom!

Please take a look – I think they are wonderful!!

Setting up an on-line workshop has been a new challenge for me as I navigate my way through software I have little experience of. I wanted to create an experience that enabled my workshops to continue in a way that allows the children to still make in a fun, safe and creative environment – to make new friendships and to share, explore, discover, experiment and imagine together! Zoom brings people together, albeit virtually – the children can chat to one another, and they can share their work as they are making it. This kind of social interaction is vital to my workshops – and even more so for all of us right now.

It is for this reason I have chosen not to do a live or recorded video to camera which I could broadcast from either Facebook or Instagram. The interaction between the participants is important for me – I want us to behave as though we are in my studio! I want to be able to give feedback and make suggestions as we create – if I was just presenting to a camera there would not be no opportunity for this.

There are some limitations to these on-line workshops, and this gave me a fantastic challenge! I have designed sessions that are ‘democratic’ for all users. Making art requires materials of some kind and not everyone has paints or other materials (even natural ones from outside) or even a space to create. Therefore, all of these sessions (at the moment) will use simple materials – pencils, pens, pencil crayons, felt tip pens, chalks (if you have other things – great!!) and also paper – or any other surface to work on (an old envelope, any scrap paper and the inside of a plastic bag would work with pens). For the more ‘daring’ of you – why not give up a wall in your house during this period of ‘lockdown’!?!?! Imagine the fun, cheery things that could grow on this over the weeks. . . and then when the world returns to ‘normal’, you can just paint over it!!! Just a thought…!! Remember we are in ‘lockdown’ and I would not expect anyone to try and source any materials that they do not already have.

The workshop sessions will run for 40 minutes: 10 mins for ‘settling in’ and 30 mins for the activity. This is not enough time to complete the activity, but you can finish the artwork afterwards by yourself without any distractions from the screen! After each workshop, I will create an on-line gallery, so I need participants to please send a well composed, good quality photo (taken on your mobile phone) of your little one’s creation. The gallery will be shared on my Facebook page and website.

Fee: I will be asking for a VOLUNTARY payment of £3 per child plus £1 for any additional children in the house who wish to take part. I am very aware that like myself, a lot of you will have had your income effected by the current crisis. So, that is why I would ask that IF you are able to pay this modest fee, then please do. If you cannot – but would still like to take part, that is fine. If you can pay, but would prefer to make a lower payment that is fine too. I will be operating payment as a kind of ‘honesty box’ approach.

Places are limited but I plan on running 2/3 sessions per week, so please get in touch if you’d like to find out more. THANK YOU!!