Following on from last year's success we are celebrating UK Disability History Month again this year, this time with a theme of disability and the arts. Below are some photos from our current #SeeMeNotDisability Twitter campaign, which is running from 22nd November until 22nd December. The photos are of some of the people that we support here at The Disabilities Trust, along with an artwork they have created. Keep your eyes peeled for our tweets and we'd love it if you could like and retweet your favourites!
Rebecca (above), from our brain injury rehabilitation service West Heath House in Birmingham, is a keen artist and says that she: "enjoys using a variety of techniques. It has given me more confidence and I find I can express myself when creating different pieces." She is keen to study art further at college.
Mark Lock, Support Worker, says of Ferenc: "He has tended to go through periods of working with different mediums, including clay, plastics, chalk, flint, photography and even molds of his own teeth. Currently he has immersed himself in bright, visually spectacular themes. This includes making collages based on colourful print outs of cartoon and computer game images, which interestingly appears to have encouraged Ferenc to rekindle his hand writing skills, in order to record and re-locate internet source material.
"However working with glass is Ferenc’s main interest. He has attended a number of glass blowing workshops and with the help of his advocate now has his own glass cutting equipment and kiln at The Maples."
Raymond (above) is also a service user at West Heath House, and enjoys using a number of mediums to express himself. He loves art and says:"I find it hard, but I love it. It helps me to relax, and I feel like I have really improved. I want to continue doing art as much as I can.”
Vicky (above right), from Graham Anderson House, enjoyed making her own Christmas decorations and is rightly proud, as you can see.
Andrew (above left) and a staff member from our brain injury service in Liverpool, Redford Court, painted this amazing scene from the little robin statue his mum got him for Christmas. When asked about whether he enjoyed painting he said he enjoyed learning to develop his technique, especially the sea and the sky.
Rachel (above centre and right) is based in Gregory Court, our physical disability service in Nottingham, and can be seen holding her latest painting in the first photo, and her latest pottery creation which she made for Business Administrator Karen Slaney, also pictured. Rachel says of her painting: "I paint to make happy memories and happy dreams, the picture is of a hay field in summer with poppies." She is also a keen gardener.
Sarah (above left) is from Redford Court and enjoys tapestry. She has been doing it for a long time and enjoys it immensely as she finds it helps her to relax and clear her mind. Sarah tried knitting at one stage but was unable to follow the patterns and it didn’t help her relax, but since she has been doing tapestry it is helping her feel calm.
Christian (above centre) and Robin (above right) are both from Ernest Kleinwort Court, our physical disability service in Burgess Hill, Sussex. Christian uses an iPad to look for the correct colours for his drawings and is also working on a tropical forest mural for the service. Robin can be seen in front of the mosaic he made, which is proudly on display at the entrance of the service.
Andrew (above left & centre) is a massive Thunderbirds fan and has been since he was a kid. When asked him why he liked them his face light up and a big smile appeared; he's always loved them from when childhood, and used to think they were real people. He loved their missions and one day wanted to join them on one. Andrew made all three models himself.
John (above right), from Graham Anderson House, has always been interested in art and attended Glasgow school of Art for six months during the early '70s. He joined the Royal Marines in the mid '70s and had a full career with them before retiring. His painting of the Taj Mahal was done free-hand entirely from memory!
He's also been very creative within the service whilst working with the vocational team and continues to be inspired with the views and compliments from staff, fellow service users and visitors. John has also inspired a great deal of motivation from his peers within the service. The Taj Mahal painting was created for an Indian theme night and currently hangs in their family room.
Sandra, (above left) from Gregory Court is busy creating a cushion for Christmas. Lots of hard work is going into it and she is very, very proud of it.
Graham Anderson House service user Sandra (above centre) has been getting crafty sewing. She has learned so much and has really excelled, despite never having sewn before. She has produced a bag from scratch and has designed and made bunting for each of her daughters to remind them that she is always thinking about them, and to give them a surprise.
Matthew (above right), a service user from Ty Aberdafen, spends every Wednesday afternoon at Parc-y-Bocs, volunteering in the gardens and on the farm. During the winter months he goes inside and mainly does wood work, which he really enjoys. So with support from Fiona Cull, Activities Coordinator, and the staff at Parc-y-Bocs he made a bench this week!
The Shinewater Court Collective (above) is a group of service users that meets on Monday mornings with artists from Compass Community Arts. Since September 2016 the artists have been focused on developing their methods, styles and techniques in painting and have several examples hanging across the service.
Starting from top left, JJ likes using spray paint but dabbles in other media; Andy wants to bring a bolder 3-D effect into his work, and uses mixed media for his paintings, including sand; Stephen's favourite painter is Monet and enjoys creating maritime paintings.
Below - Liz shows tremendous skills as a colourist and creates bold, contemporary abstract paintings. "I enjoy doing this." She says of her work, "When I have the paper in front of me the colours just speak to me and I am delighted by how the painting come about." Glynn is: "most proud of the work I did on a picture for a friend’s wedding" which can be seen below. Hannah's style is bold and full of humour, she said: "I like painting as I have a really good artistic flair influenced by electronic music. I like doing paintings of animals as well because I used to have a cat and a dog and I think that animals are really interesting to paint”. with her.
Nina enjoys the feel of moving the paint with her hands and our artists finds ways of collaborating; and Val (above right) is a prolific artist and produces many different styles and just enjoys expressing herself.