Artists Comments

We could sit here all day and try to explain the good work we do.  But it’s much better to hear it from the people who do the really good work – the artists themselves.

It’s important to communicate with people, and art, I believe art is about communicating with people. Communicating with yourself as well, it’s a place where you can be read…and I think that’s why people are often frightened to just put anything down, because suddenly they’ve walked into a place with no rules…

‘It (art) was another form of communication, because I couldn’t talk very well. Actually I (just) couldn’t talk sometimes and I wasn’t being understood, so I used painting and writing as other forms of trying to communicate with people…(and so) for me it was vital.’

‘I feel my confidence has been raised up and increased, as the mental health thing knocks your confidence you know’

‘It’s had a positive effect on my immediate circle you know, the stone in the water effect.
It ripples out, the effects on the family.

‘You begin slowly to get your confidence back, just because you’re doing something …the way you can feel like are achieving things and progressing’

‘My wife and my son would say I am calmer’

‘I could see that it was a social project. I think it was that aspect that I found the most difficult, I just wanted to do art. I didn’t really want to be social initially. I found the social aspect overpowering at the beginning, but it’s good to be challenged …and I feel comfortable with that now’

‘When I first joined the project, I just used to go along to the writing group, but then I became for involved in the running of projects and different projects as well. I know how to go from someone sitting, having an idea, because plenty of people do, they think wouldn’t that be a great idea for a film, or I’d really like to publish a book, or I’d like to have my music recorded. I know how to go from there to having a film on the screen or having a book that you can hold in your hand and show to someone. I know how to do that…
that’s the main thing I’ve learnt

‘I’ve gained skills that have allowed the artistic and creative side to me to be revealed and developed. It’s an art of living if you like and it’s challenging because we don’t have that level of consistency that comes with stable mental health you know? So it’s important not to use formal qualifications in your work, but allow for the wave pattern

‘To begin with most people are looking for a wee bit of catharsis, a wee bit of therapy or whatever. but as time goes by and people actually become aware of their developing abilities and find skills they didn’t know they had, then there is a real hunger to get their work out there’

‘It’s basically saved my life this project, if that’s not too strong a point, it give you a focus on the week. When you’re not here, you’re thinking what you can do, what can you do on your own. It’s important that this project doesn’t fold’

It is a valuable and necessary part of my healing –and it helps me to express myself in a safe way

Life altering –in a more than positive sense. In a more practical sense I have discovered and will continue to develop a long hidden, if modest ability to communicate.

The project has given me inspiration, insight into my self-something to get excited about. I get a life from the workshops and people. It is a pleasure to be a part of.

Supportive, good fun company and laughs. Opportunities to be mucky!

It changed my life, especially my notion of myself-very much for the better.

I have seen peoples’ lives turned around for the good. The offering of something to do, something stimulating cannot be underestimated. If you have mental health problems then what the project makes possible is desirable as opposed to –medication, a hospital is a very good thing, thank you.

It is like a family. I have never had anything in my life so valuable that has sustained me in the way that this does. It allows you to feel loved and to share love with other human compassionate souls. Thank you! For it to end would be like a child dying before it can fully develop and grow! (sorry!)

Benefited me anyway! It’s good to find someplace and people who can help.

A great project- almost like a family with its various members working as individuals but contributing to a greater identity where ideas are greater than sum of its parts.

Want to hear more?  Have a look at our DVD – ‘Winter Sun’