Art in the Park strives to support their staff, volunteers and artists through sharing skills, knowledge and experiences. We hold quarterly skills share meetings where we invite our volunteers and artists to speak on a given topic- so far we have covered creative evaluation and behaviour management.
This skill share had a variety of people in attendence, including artists, staff and volunteers from Art in the Park. The session allowed participants to gain a greater insight into behaviour and how you should go about promoting positive behaviour; thanks to a very informative talk by Andy Cook and Elissa Thompson. Colette Cameron also conducted a session dedicated to an introduction to mental health first aid. This session provided some very valuable information which will be developed and shared to aid everyone on our projects.
As well as talks, demonstration were also conducted at this event allowing participants to develop their skills and knowledge in different areas. Charlie Hill carried out a waterolour painting demonstration which was very entertaining as well as educational and daisy Frossard conducted a session dedicated to recycled shanty town making which proved to be a lot of fun. Both these sessions alowed participants to be more hands on in their learning and promoted a social atmosphere, making the whole event more enjoyable for everyone involved.
A number of valuable insights came out of this Skills Share at the Riverside Café Bar. The meeting featured as its main component a moving report by artist Lindsey Mitchell and volunteer Charlie Hill on the Winn Gardens Afterschool Club project. One of the main issues to come out of the Winn Gardens report was that of behavior management. Following an insightful discussion a tool kit of ideas on how to deal with behavior management issues was developed which it was decided should be shared between artists and volunteers.
One of our artists then mentioned that we should look into how artists can better link practice and delivery on future projects. It was suggested that while there should be a greater link between the artist’s own specialty and the projects they are involved in, there should be more opportunities for artists to learn new art forms which could then be put into practice on future projects. We will be looking into putting some of these ideas into action as soon as possible.
This event was open to all our artists, volunteers, board members and workers. It was an opportunity for us to think about where we want Art in the Park to be in 5 years time. Not only was it great to get to meet everyone, we also all seemed to be on the same page with ideas and wants for the future. Some of the main things that came out of the meeting included Art in the Park working city wide, having small bases to work from within local communities, having an arts van and an arts centre!! Watch this space!
“I thought the Appreciative Inquiry session was a great opportunity to meet all the people involved with Art in the Park from their different perspectives and involvements. There was so much positive energy and a shared vibe and commitment. We really did seem to be singing from the same canvass!” - Julie (Board member)