The final part of my ‘Dependent Origination’ project has come to pass, culminating in a series of family workshops in the local community and a project sharing for the public and project partners to attend. It felt like a bit of a relief to get the workshops off the ground after cancellations earlier in the year due to Covid related hurdles. It’s really shown me how much of a minefield promoting an event can be, with most of the bookings being made in the week leading up to the day after a final push on social media to try and get people involved. This was after a large print run of flyers was delivered to partner schools and local venues to try and draw in a different audience to the original schools workshops. These flyers were aimed at year groups and venues that had no involvement in the initial stages of the project (Approximately 300-400 young people) but in the end drew a very small amount of interest. Turning to local Facebook groups seemed on this occasion to be the way to go with most of the workshop slots being fully booked for the day. It felt worth while to be delivering to new people that hadn’t experienced the process and the project before and also as the space was set up for the project sharing too, they had a chance to get an understanding of the project as a whole before getting the opportunity to make their own cyanotype print.
Feedback from participants was largely positive too which was wonderful to hear. The major feelings about what could have been better during the sessions were related to the weather as we had a lot of heavy rain and cloud cover which did mean that the prints weren’t as strong as we would have liked even though we did get results. The most interesting piece of feedback related to the mix of ages within one of the groups and how I might be able to better tailor the sessions for a mixture of the very young to the older end of the spectrum as was the case in one of the groups. A difficult one to figure out I think but certainly something to work with in any future workshops. Some more feedback I received following the workshops:
“Very informative and amazing results. What a good project.”
“Great introduction to a new craft. I’m inspired to go away and explore further. A very enjoyable hour, thank you.”
“The pictures and process were really cool! I really enjoyed it.”
The project sharing took place the day after the workshops and allowed people a chance to see the work I and the associate artists had produced, get a look at the dome up close and watch a documentary video made by Rendah Films (below) that detailed the whole project and the ideas behind it.
The following weekend saw me set up at Active Arts Family Art Day which was hosted at the local secondary school. This felt like a good event to attend as Active Arts generously contributed financially to my first partner school to help with their payment for the project. The secondary school is also a new delivery location for me and could open up the opportunity to work with more people new to my workshops. I saw pretty low numbers for this workshop as it wasn’t an event you had to book for but it was a great test bed for running the workshop on a “walk up” basis, rather than having people book a time slot to take part. So in that sense it felt like a success and the people that did visit my stand on the day walked away very happy with their prints, that was certainly helped by the much better weather than the previous weekend!