Just before Christmas, we held the first workshops for the Michael Aldrich Foundation x Drug of Art collaboration.
Led by the inspirational Nadia Chalk of Worthing’s Creative Waves, children aged 7-11 from Chesswood Primary School were challenged to get creative:
- designing and cutting shapes out of adhesive vinyl to make stencils.
- designing, cutting and drawing onto acetate to create window hangings, adding wire and adhesive vinyl for extra decoration.
- Illustrating figures using fine liners, capturing the expression and feel of the character and their clothing.
I challenge children to make themselves smile with their artwork. Whether through the process or outcome…or both. To draw, make, create when they are bored, to see if they can entertain themselves with creative ideas…as crazy as they like and not to be precious about it…I always try to convey the importance of loving your own work and if you don’t like what you’re doing just keep on experimenting … just to see if there’s something wonderful waiting to appear…Perfectionism can be a curse. Being precious about each piece of work can trigger anxiety. Illustration is a great platform to demonstrate how we can improve our skills, to achieve the desired outcome – depending on what we want. If they’re grumpy about their work I praise them for editing it and suggest they adjust their vision and enjoy the challenge of ‘fixing’ it and how that sense of achievement is rewarding. If it doesn’t work I suggest putting that energy into a new piece, learning from what didn’t work well.
The work produced at the workshops was nothing short of joyful and we have received fantastic feedback from the school, children and parents
“I want to be an artist when I grow up, I just want to draw all day because it makes me feel warm”
“I’m going to hang this on a plant in my kitchen, my mum will love it”
“Can you come into school every day?”
“My daughter was buzzing when she came home and hasn’t stopped drawing all day, didn’t even look at her ipad”
We are very grateful for support with materials from Cass Art – Nadia particularly enjoyed giving the children access to high quality materials which might not ordinarily be found in a school supplies cupboard.
The next round of workshops are being held in schools in Eastbourne, Peacehaven, Tunbridge Wells, Brighton and London.