Wild About Wight Art Workshop

Our Wild About Wight art workshop this month was focussed specifically on exploring the wildflowers, weeds and plants that make their homes in and around our towns. Led this time by artist Caroline Underwood, with support from Hannah George and Carol Jaye, we spent a magic sun-filled morning yesterday at Shanklin's Winchester House aka YMCA.

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One of the aims of Wild About Wight is to encourage people of all ages to find new inspiration in their natural and built environment, seeing afresh and exploring through all sorts of ways. Reimagining familiar surroundings or introducing new ones, with the help of a range of experts and artists means we can never get bored at our bus-stops ever again!

And you don't have to look far if you draw inspiration from nature. Many of our street plants are garden escapees or planted by design like the wallflowers and rosemary in the collection. Some however were there before the towns themselves, remnants of our indigenous coastal flora. Many that some call weeds, are really wildflowers and plants and things like dandelions and ivy are a brilliant resource for supporting pollinators and a whole range of invertebrates in our towns and gardens.

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All our plants for this workshop were from Shanklin, found by Caroline on the cliff-path that morning and by the end of the day, everyone had built up a sense of that very particular place on paper.

Caroline will be out and about replanting everyone's images in urban environments... more on that soon!

The idea is that with the help of our monthly Wild About Wight art workshops, everyone's art, words and souvenirs will help to build up a palette of plants, colours, architectural details and landscapes bespoke to East Wight. Better still, everything we collect on our travels will be displayed in a Wild About Wight exhibition at Quay Arts next May 2019... a fantastic way to celebrate not only Down To The Coast but the Year of the Biosphere too.

Thanks to Caroline, Hannah and Carol, Simon at the YMCA, everyone who joined us leaving their art with us and Clair and Jo and Island Support Services for helping with the signing.