Creative Arts

ARTIST FOR SCHOOLS, COMMUNITY GROUPS AND EVENTS – Karen Slade

My work as a community artist.

When I run a workshop I like to encourage freedom to experiment, have fun and to be fully creative, within the framework of the topic we are starting with. I bring small samples of the technique we are using as well as references to artists and images that we might use for ideas and inspiration, and I try to give an impression of what we’ll be working towards, rather than showing a fully finished version so that no-one is put off.

Most of the materials I work with are adaptable for lots of topics, I began working with felt making in schools and events because I identified a need for a material that was suitable for a group working together to produce a large, colourfully impressive end result, in situations where there wasn’t either the time or the budget to create a tiled mural.

Over the last 7 years that I have worked as a community artist I have gained experience in what can reasonably be achieved in the time available and to what finished result. I am happy to advise on this, especially for schools where I can help define what could be done in class in preparation before I arrive, or could be carried on as continuing development after I leave. This ensures that the project is an integral part of the class work across both the school curriculum and the rest of  the term or even the year’s work.

Something that has been said to me over and over when I’m at a school is how relaxed the teacher feels while I am there working with the class - I make sure that I’m well prepared, have everything I need to hand and arrive and set up in good time. Then I can concentrate on ensuring that the children are confident and excited about what we are doing. I’m happy for everyone to get involved, including teachers, teaching assistants and volunteer helpers, as I think my visit to school can be as much about them working with an artist and learning new skills as well as the children.

I have experience in working with children, teenagers and adults with special learning needs and I ensure that the tools I use in workshops are accessible and safe.

Whether you need an artist for school for a day, a week or as part of a longer term residency.

If you are looking for an artist for a community event, if you would like an artist to work with adults, young parents and families, if you would like an artist to arrange an activity for your social group or evening meeting, just contact us to discuss your needs.

We work with organisations such as corporate sponsors, hospitals and heritage organisations and can manage larger projects including tile murals, willow sculptures and installations for landscape gardens, hospitals and community centres.

After many of  the workshops, whether in schools or at public events, I find that adults, children and teachers ask how can they continue to develop their new interest and skills. Our links page on this site has many of the suppliers that we use for that reason, to help people find the materials to continue.

The media that I work with include:

  • Clay tile murals
  • Clay hand building forms, in fired and air-drying clay
  • Felt banners, felt pictures, felt masks and felt angels
  • Recycled materials - costumes, hats, lanterns, sculptures
  • Natural materials - Well Dressing with clay, flowers and leaves
  • Print making, scrap booking, card making, collage
  • Mask making, Green men in clay
  • Paper making using natural materials and recycled materials
  • Willow dream catchers, willow lanterns with tissue
  • Living willow classrooms and sculptures
  • Glass painting, Silk painting
  • Tissue paper laminate lanterns, flowers and hats.

 


Pictures from top:

  • Well Dressing using flower petals and leaves / Laminate and tissue flower lantern for carnival procession
  • A 2 m x 1m Felt banner of Van Gogh Irises made by year 2 pupils
  • Isaac Newton Felt aphabet banner for the National Trust at Colsterworth / Card making and Scrap book making
  • Tissue paper and willow lanterns for Carnival procession / Van Gogh Sunflowers made as a 2m x 1m felt banner by a year 3 class in school / SureStart medieval banner for the Robin Hood Pageant

 

Karen Slade - Creative artist Karen Salde - Creative Artist ppdcb9dd98 ppdcb9dd98-1

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