Art and Writing Class (September – December 2020)

Our weekly art and writing class takes place every Tuesday from 15:00 to 16:00.

The theme this term is Tales from the Hearth. The class produces beautiful art, writing and poetry inspired by the concept of the week.

Below you will find some of the work produced by our clients.

Week 1: ‘What makes a happy hearth’

Recipe for Hearth Cake
Take a mountain of hope
A packet of home
A bucket of laughter
A crowd of friendship
A box of light
Stir in
fresh air
stories and art

Week 2: ‘Hands’

Hands at the Hearth
Gathered around this hearth
we paint, draw and contemplate our hands
In the palm of our hands we hold
bright colours
red, Green yellow
a river of peace
flowers and the garden I tend
fruit and vegetables

Week 3: ‘Expressions’

Reading expressions around the Hearth
We say ‘ we read expressions’ as if our faces were a book
We say ‘ we wear expressions like we ‘wear’ our clothes
We pull some faces
Sad, happy, surprised, thinking, grateful, angry, unhappy, fierce, furious
content, relaxed, smiley, worried, anxious, shy

We draw faces in the crowd of oval faces
Taking a pen and placing features on
Eyes, eyebrows, nose, mouth, ears, hair

We place ourselves in a crowd and imagine ourselves there
A is in a crowd waiting for exam results in an internet café
B is in a church
Her expression, calm and peaceful
C is at a football match
though for some reason the thought of that makes her laugh

D is in a crowd waiting for exam results in an internet café
depending on the results everyone’s expression is different
E shares self portraits he has painted before
And a beautiful drawing of an eye

Now we consider the portrait

The self portrait
Looking into the mirror
F shows us her beautiful self portrait surrounded by leaves and hearts
Where would we like to place ourselves?
G would be in a bluebell wood in Spring
Surrounded by her children
H would wear a crown of red roses
Standing near the sea
Happy and relaxed
I sitting on the sofa
Right where she is
With a background of roses and leaves
In a scarf of green
J would like to be painted in her blue and green kitchen
Baking a cake

Week 4: ‘Trees’

Tales from the Hearth
Today we are looking at trees.
the earth
draw a piece of land
draw underground
dark, long roots
fingers into the earth
the root of the tree in my garden is shallow
the same word for humans, trees and elephants
strong, thick trunk
thin, slender trunk
sapling – is a young tree
fan shaped trunk for Josee’s banana tree
I’m thinking of a tree that gives shade or shelter
I’m thinking of an avocado tree in the forest
I draw the branches
stark in winter with no leaves
blossom in spring full of flowers and leaves
sometimes fruit make a tree bow
Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter

tiny roots
some fruit and leaves some branches
what colours ?
Changing from green, to red, to yellow and orange
I love autumn trees
changing coloured leaves
J is drawing different shapes of leaves
veins in the leaves and the veins of our hands
J says the veins in the leaf are the same as the veins of the trunk of the tree
I enjoy running through the leaves
sch sch
falling leaves
catching leaves
leaping squirrel
Together at our Hearth

we have painted a small forest of trees

Week 5: ‘Fruit’

We talked of fruit of the earth
Apples, oranges , pineapple, lemons, grapes
grapefruit and their perfect segments
The juice can be used to exfoliate
for greasy skin
Pineapple for digestion
Pomegranates with ruby red fruit, 
thousands of seeds
Fertility, fruit of love 
Coconuts with brown hairy husk
cream insides
sweet to eat
and milk to drink
We cut open a pomegranate
and looked at its patterns
seeds shaped like starfish
sea urchins
We traced pattern 
we poured ruby juice
like blood
and wine
then we set to imagining and chatting

Week 6: ‘Leaves’

Autumn is a season of change
Art is a season of change
In the woods of this season
We paint and talk about leaves
In the season of change we paint in our
favourite colours
red, orange, mustard, yellow
ever greens too  give us hope
We love the blue skies
the natural greens
the ruby reds of hearths and hearts
red for passion
for anger
for love too
With the changing seasons we have changing feelings
We can start our art by feeling sad then transform our mood
like the colours of autumn leaves
 we dance and sway in our art
finding leaf people
and playfulness
drawing leaf women
with wild hair vines
Autumn is the season of  changing colours
of ruby reds, mustards and wine
leaves with serrated edges
beautiful veins
skeleton frames
we paint inside
blending colour
fusing feelings
till our art glows
and brings warmth to our hearts and our hearth.

Week 7: ‘Eyes’

Week 8: ‘Illuminated Letters’

We take up our imaginary quills
crossing the borders of the screen
Zoom in together
to be illuminated by letters

We play games around our initials
gathering together the things we love
Or words that begin with the letters of our names
A few examples shared
N for nut
E for elephant
J for Jaguar
R for River
S for sea 
Imagination flows and decoration grows

Within our Hearth hour
Initials are embroidered with
fruit, food, love hearts, stars, a rabbit and  a rat
pine trees, ornate patterns, moons, stars, quills

In this Hearth time
of illuminated warmth
the flowers of our imagination tumble over borders of straight lines
escaping the confines of a locked down frame

Week 9: ‘Squiggles, Wiggles and Oodles of Doodles’

Squiggles and GigglesOodles and Noodles
Today we had oodles and noodles of fun
squiggling and giggling our way through the screen
Playing with art
Playing with the imagination
Playing with the shadows
ghosts creatures that play on our minds
We remembered a phrase from another time
‘I put my mind in my paper and find ‘ peace’
We found other things too
ghosts living in tangled places
we talked of finding pictures in the moon
a mirror to our emotions
reflecting feelings
We returned to alien creatures
Sharing pictures from other Arrivals
we put our minds in our paper and found
shouting fish with jutting jaw
chickens pecking
seahorses floating
dragons roaring fire
There were sweet, shy looking creatures
whose tails were lost on a different page.
And these words were said with humour and heart
Art is not just about drawing
But also about thinking and laughing

Week 10: ‘Emotions’

Colour snap!

The culture of colours
(A conversation with I, R and S)

‘You don’t just learn a language. It’s not only a matter of
learning the words. Even colours have a different meaning for
different peoples.’

Happy- Yellow, Gold and Green
Sita thought in a country without much sun – these colours are
golden, whereas in a country where there is desert and sun
‘green’ is more precious and brings happiness appy – for
Ibstam is green for Ros and Sita it’s gold or yellow.
and the end of drought.

Jealousy – Green and Yellow
We talked of green for jealousy too – the green eyed monster
While for Ibstam yellow is the colour of jealousy. In Arabic
culture and when she came here she was amazed to see so
many yellow flowers

Angry –Red
Funny how we all agreed on the one thing that is about
disagreement! We all chose red for anger.

Calm was pale blues and greens

Energetic was orange or blue

Loneliness and sadness were blue, grey or black

feeling blue or having a blue day
That phrase too is in Arabic culture

Love – was red or pink