I have had an eclectic creative journey that started with Blue Peter inspired cardboard box rooms for my Action Man (yes, I was a child), through to Art College using film & video, installations and sculpture to a love of digital photography in the present.
After completing the IGNITE course with ARTWORKS in 2007 and the new Open College Network accredited C3 (Creative Communities Course) with ARTWORKS in 2008 I hope to maybe enable others to regain their ‘voice’ (I had used creativity extensively with my retraining and work as a psychiatric nurse.)I was an affiliated artist with Artworks, Bradford.
In January 2008 I decreased my part-time hours, working in special needs education and a behaviour unit, to enable more commitment and time to the development of my creative practice as an emerging freelance artist with a desire to gain a Masters in Visual Art. My autism hindered me when young , especially in my BA (Hons) Art degree where communicating was challenging and could only happen through the artwork and film.
Visual communication is an important focus on engaging an audience within my interest of social need.
My role as a lone parent has been paramount, with the need to maintain a roof over our heads being fundamental. I had resurfaced after a difficult time, rebuilding a life in another city 200 miles away, making brand new contacts, establishing friendships and basically starting again with nothing.
I am a strong individual and am now on my creative journey, surviving a controlling domestic abuse situation, stronger than ever.
I assisted a Community Artist with Kala Sangam in Feb 2008 on a voluntary basis to gain confidence, working with young people in Girlington, Bradford and gained valuable experience in art practice within a community environment.
I conducted a workshop at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, part of the ‘Dark Skies in Yorkshire’ project in 2009.
At Craven Organisation for Drugs & Alcohol I facilitated a 6 session project on issues around substance misuse cullminating in an exhibition of the client's work in Skipton in 2010.
2016 I created The Creative Butterfly Project, working in partnership with domestic abuse organisations, to facilitate recovery from abuse using creative processes. In 2017 it reached the finals of the National Lottery Awards for Best Art Project, 1 of only 7 finalists. When the Creative Butterfly Project became a not-for-profit company in December 2017, I became one of 3 Directors as well as it's lead facilitator. We received just under 5K from The Safer Communities Fund in West Yorkshire, in partnership with the Police. Three 6 week blocks were delivered to more survivors of abuse. The project then received another National Lottery Grant which focused on Art and Words in 2018. In 2018 I qualified as a Teacher in Further Education.
I remain a freelance artist/photographer, trying hard to keep that roof over our heads, adapting as needed to challenges that present the lone hardworking parent, with an inherited strong work ethic.