Category Archive: Workshops

  1. Chortlon Arts Festival Workshops 2012

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    mask making After performing at Chorlton Arts Festival 2011, Aqueous Humour were invited back to be part of the schools programme for 2012. They run a series of workshops and performances in the Blue Box Theatre at Chorlton High School for pupils at the school and from local primary schools. We worked with kids from Chorlton Church of England Primary.

    Tom  from Aqueous Humour explored drama games and improvisation with Year 1. Quite a change from the KS3 kids we have been working with. It was a delightful afternoon filled with fun and noise. Intrigued to discover many didn’t know what eye colour their own eyes were when asked to get into groups. Mild chaos & confusion ensued but they worked it out in the end by all working together. Enjoyed making images in groups but everyone wanted to be eyes in the face task. In one group nobody would back down so one boy suggested that they become a ‘3 eyed alien’. Well, Tom never said what kind of face. Tom felt it was a really successful session especially at the end when they thanked him with an en-masse hug/rugby tackle requesting him as their new teacher – aw, bless.

    Alien masksI made alien masks with Year 4. Aliens are good fun as can go mad with colour and texture and shape and antennae and tentacles etc. I worked with them in small groups to create the base masks while they drew some designs. It’s important to create a design however quick & rough to help get ideas going and make decisions. This leads to faster more confident work once you get to the making stage with less mistakes. Once they transferred their designs to the masks, they used tissue paper to colour them and ribbons, pipe-cleaners, sequin waste, wool etc to decorate them. They created a fabulously imaginative array of colourful aliens.

    Chorlton Church of England School should be proud of their pupils. They were a delight to work with and created some fantastic work. Thanks also to Chorlton High School for lending us their arts ambassadors to give a hand with the workshops, I hope they enjoyed themselves too. The Blue Box Theatre was a lovely (though a bit hot) space to run workshops in and hope to return in the future with a performance.

  2. Soft Toy Making – Blue Room

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    2016-01-29-17.32.57_websqKate from the The Men’s Room charity approached me to work with their Blue Room group which works specifically with young men vulnerable to sexual exploitation and those who were surviving by selling sex. They wanted to work with artist to look at a variety of craft skills with an end product that they could take home. Many craft products are traditionally thought of a feminine. I suggested soft toy making as hey, who doesn’t love a teddy?

    I showed them some of my Wotnots and a simple sock alien as inspiration. I created a basic pattern to make their own mini mascot. I did variations on the pattern for bunny, cat, owl and alien but was able to help them adapt the pattern to create any animal. A dog and a monkey were requested. I brought a variety of brightly coloured fleece fabrics. I chose fleece as it does not fray and is lovely and cuddly. Once they had cut out their pattern from their chosen fabric, I showed them 2 styles of stitches – back stitch on the inside to create a smooth finish and whip stitch on the outside for a rough homespun feel. The toys were stuffed with polyester fibre with chickpeas at bottom to give them a bit of weight for sitting. From this point they could choose how to embellish them – buttons, felt, ribbon, embroidery. They could also add arms, legs and/or tails.

    Initially everybody had various children and loved ones in mind to receive their toys but by the end they seemed to have become too attached to give them away. Hopefully they feel confident to make more as gifts.