Community wellbeing workshop
Being & Thyme
with stories & art
What's it all about?
Our new outdoor arts and wellbeing workshop 'Being & Thyme' is for local people who would like to take some creative time out in a safe outdoor environment - at the lovely Redcatch Community Garden. We will explore wellbeing inspired by stories, art and nature.
What? How? When?
Once a week, we'll be meeting at Redcatch Community Garden. Following a warm welcome, time to connect with the group and an opportunity to familiarise yourself with the beautiful outside space, Jenny will introduce you to the art materials and suggest some possible ways of creating art inspired by nature and the surroundings. During the session, Pridie will share a specially selected story which you can then use (or not choose to use) as a springboard for your art.
We hope that you will share your interests and your own stories with the group, and that this will also help to shape future sessions. At the end of each workshop, we will check back in with each other and share what we have been creating or thinking about.
Why combine art,
and the outdoors...?
It's no secret that spending time outside is incredibly beneficial when it comes to our mental and physical wellbeing. To reduce stress, banish anxiety and improve our mood, getting outdoors is an obvious option and with all that is happening in the world at the moment - time outside should definitely be an essential part of everyone's daily routine.
Community and connection is another vital part of our mental wellbeing. It has been much harder to meet in groups during the Covid-19 pandemic and this group offers the chance to meet outdoors and connect with others in the community in a safe and enjoyable way.
Just like exercise and the outdoors, art and stories have the unique power to focus our emotions and invigorate us. Aside from providing the obvious escapism, they also increase our levels of Oxycontin - the 'feel good' hormone - positively influencing and boosting our mood and behaviour. They can distract and relax us as well as provide us with something to ponder while we're out enjoying that fresh air! But these aren't their only superpowers...
Recently, the World Health Organisation published a report that enthusiastically supports the use of the arts to promote mental and physical health (you can read the full report here) , highlighting how the arts contribute to the promotion of good health and the prevention of a range of mental and physical health conditions.
Who can do this?
Our Being and Thyme workshops are aimed at people who live within walking distance from the garden and it is free to join.
The workshops are fully accessible and there is a disabled parking and a unisex disabled toilet nearby in the park.
These morning art and story sessions will take place once a week. All you need is weather appropriate clothing to make sure you stay nice and warm (and there will be plenty of hot coffees available to purchase at the kiosk to help with this as well!)
Keep an eye out for forthcoming dates!
Jenny is a an art, craft and messy play workshop facilitator, artist and final year Art Psychotherapy student. Pre-Covid she ran outdoor preschool art and messy play workshops at Redcatch Community Garden through her business Happymess () and continues to run socially distanced art workshops for adults and families.
She also runs 'Art in the Garden' - an art and wellbring group through a collective of which she is part ().
Pridie is a professional storyteller based in Bristol. A self-confessed story obsessive, she performs and delivers workshops for all ages.
Her focus is on traditional folk and fairy tale narratives, myths and legends, and her love of the Great Outdoors means that every one of her events draws deeply from the wild outside!
WHAT PEOPLE SAY
Stories connect us. They give us a window into the world of the past and to the preoccupations of previous generations. They enable us to explore sorrow and joy and provide models of overcoming difficult situations.
But stories are also full of laughter and allow us to have fun with language as we connect with others.
The Wild of the Words brings all of this together in a lively and accessible way.
Pridie’s passion for storytelling and her love of language makes these sessions a lovely part of my Lockdown experience! I love the energy of her retellings and her interactions and reflections. I highly recommend!
Jenny's workshops have provided a welcome break from the monotony of Lockdown. The variety of projects we worked on were both challenging and achievable and great for my mental health! For an art novice like me, it was perfect! So grateful to have this on my doorstep!
Creativity is important - it helps me feel good and opens up another way to understand myself, my feelings. It is as if the creative process and being absorbed allows surprising ideas, awareness, thoughts and feelings to come in.