News

Mindful Art Club on PTown Radio

In this relaxed and fun radio interview Chi asks Emma,

What is Mindful Art Club?

Where in Plymouth does it happen?

And who exactly is it for?

Emma Sprawson talks to Chi Bennett on Show and Tell With Queen Chi, PTown Radio, (15/01/21) about Mindful Art Club(R), a unique support group, that tackles social isolation and mental health in Plymouth, Devon.

Skip to 11 minutes in to hear Emma read a poem that explains how to stop, breathe and walk slowly into the mystery.

Skip to 12:35 where Chi asks, what if I’ve got kids at home? Can I still join in with the online group?

How to Make Zentangles

Zentangle artwork by Cara H.

Zentangles® are a kind of meditative drawing; creating abstract, repetitive patterns, without worrying what the patterns look like. This process slows down the breathing, calms the mind, and helps you to focus on the present moment. It’s a therapeutic way of drawing that offers peace of mind, and is accessible to all.

The method was created in 2003 by an American couple called Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas. You can find out more about them at www.zentangle.com The Zentangle teaching materials and tools are covered by copyright and “Zentangle” is a registered trademark of Zentangle, Inc.

  • You will need a piece of plain A4 paper and a black pen.
  • Draw six boxes to put your Zentangles into.
  • Inside the first box, draw a line to make a “string.” The string separates your square into sections, in which you draw your tangles. A string can be any shape.
  • Take your pen for a walk, and draw random patterns inside the shapes. Try shading different areas.
  • On an A4 page you might have six different boxes full of Zentangles.

There are eight steps in the original Zentangle method, which you can read about on their website.

What is a Zentangle and why would you draw one? Watch Emma explain here:

Watch Peggy draw Zentangles here:

https://www.facebook.com/MindfulArtClub/videos/660535961437055/

Join in with the Facebook Live session here:

https://www.facebook.com/MindfulArtClub/videos/196899558173904/

Skip to 25 minutes in to watch the part about Zentangles.

Alternatively, instead of drawing in squares, you could incorporate zentangle style patterns into your own drawing, as with the example above created by Cara H, a client at one of our weekly groups.

Now we’d love to hear from you. Have you tried drawing zentangles? How does it make you feel? Leave us a comment below.

Tier 3: Changes in January

We hope you are safe, and that you have had a chance to relax over Christmas. Although Devon is now in Tier 3 we are planning to continue to provide mutual aid and support wherever we can. However, some of our venues will be unable to open, even though support groups of up to 15 people are permitted in Tier 3. Details of how this will affect our regular groups are below.

In the meantime we want to offer you some fun resources to kick off the New Year.

Listen to Emma on the radio. She talked about how our art club continued to bring people together in a safe way, during a year when we were asked to socially distance ourselves from one another. Skip to seven minutes in to try a quick mindful drawing exercise.

Watch: MAC Awards Ceremony 2020 The celebrations were restricted to a very small, outdoor dinner party, because of the coronavirus restrictions.

Try our new online group. We are looking forward to working with Devon Recovery Learning Community in 2021 to deliver a new six week course, on Zoom, on Thursday afternoons. 

Learn: A quick video guide to using Zoom.

Join Our Tuesday Zoom group. A supportive online meeting offering creativity, company and social connection: A short mindful meditation and an easy art project.

Read: How to Do Art Club When You Don’t Really Want to Go Out. Includes a mindfulness recording to listen to at home, and some YouTube videos of us making art for fun.

Changes for January 2021 

Mondays The Sunflower Women’s Centre – All courses at The Sunflower Centre are currently postponed.
Tuesdays Our online group continues with new co-host Linda Langart! (£3.00)
Tuesdays: 7pm 8-Week Wellbeing Course The evening course is temporarily postponed. We will contact you with more details.
Thursdays Plympton group at The Brook Inn Postponed while we are in Tier 3.
Fridays The Sunflower Women’s Centre. Group cancelled.
Fridays Ocean Studios, Royal William Yard. Postponed while we are in Tier 3.

Full details about these groups are here: Mindful Art Community Groups When groups begin again booking is essential due to Covid-19 safety recommendations. 

If you’re on Facebook you could also join our Mindful Art Club group to stay in touch with others who come to our sessions. It’s a place to chat, maintain connections, support one another, and share your art from the Zoom sessions.

We wish you all the best for the New Year, and look forward to seeing you again when it is safe to do so.

Peggy and Emma

PS. Catch up with a video replay of one of our online art groups any time you like, on Facebook.

Mindful Colouring: Free Download

Are you stressed? Anxious? Depressed? This mindful therapeutic gift could be the start of a creative solution for you.

It’s amazing how the simple act of colouring can calm the mind down. I have designed a few mindful art colouring pages around the theme of “I am enough” using a little egg character that I created. His caption is, “I am an oeuf.” (Oeuf is French for egg.) The oeuf character makes me smile. Grab your free colouring pages by signing up to our mailing list, and then we’ll write to you monthly to let you know about our latest free and low-cost events in the Plymouth area, plus videos and mindfulness recordings. (Your details are safe with us, and you can unsubscribe at any time.)

Yes please, send me free stuff!

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Christmas Online Group

We are running a Christmas-themed art group on Zoom on 22nd December, but there will be no other groups for the rest of December. We are going to draw a Christmas carol, and we have to guess what carol each others pictures are! There’s no pressure to be good at drawing, it’s just a bit of fun. You can also bring your own mince pie and wear a Christmas jumper if you like. Book your place now

Thank you so much to everyone who has been to one of our groups or retreats in this very strange year. We will be back in the New Year 2021 with an exciting new online course.

Make sure to take care of yourself this Christmas.

Best wishes from Peggy and Emma. xx

New in 2021: Free Online Course

Want to learn to practice relaxation exercises, and art for self-care?

We are looking forward to working with Devon Recovery Learning Community in 2021 to deliver a new six week course, on Zoom.

This recovery college is provided by Devon Partnership NHS Trust to support mental health and wellbeing. Their students are people with experience of mental health difficulties, their family and friends, and the professionals who support them.

Each session of our new course includes five minutes of guided mindfulness, five minutes of mindful drawing, a simple art project, and the opportunity to chat and relax.

‘Doodle Your Recovery’ gives people the opportunity to share their feelings, practice mindfulness, create art, relax and chat. This course:

  • Improves mental health
  • Improves social connection
  • Teaches new skills (relaxation exercises and art for self- care)

We start with a ‘check in’ to see how everyone is feeling. There is no obligation to speak if you don’t want to. This is followed by some guided mindfulness, then a simple art project e.g. drawing Zentangles or paisley, or making a greetings card.

We end the group with a ‘check out’ to share how everyone is feeling after practicing mindfulness and making art.

This 6 week, online course starts on Thursday 14th January, then 21st and 28th January and 4th and 11th February.

Places are limited. Book early to avoid disappointment: Doodle Your Recovery Online.

We’re Back Next Week!

We hope you were OK during the November lockdown. As you may know, we stopped all of our in-person art groups and just offered a weekly Zoom session for coffee, creativity and company every Tuesday. This will be carrying on throughout December. (We no longer live-stream this online group to Facebook because of some technical issues, so from now on you need to book a place in advance to get the Zoom link.)


We’re excited that our new 8-week wellbeing course launches in Plympton on 8th December, and this has proved to be very popular, with only two places remainingBook now to confirm your place!

Things to look forward to in December 2020 include: 


Mondays 10.30am The Sunflower Women’s Centre (we’re back on the 7th).
Tuesdays 10.00am Our friendly Online Group (£3.00)
Tuesdays: 7.00pm 8-Week Wellbeing Course (Advance booking essential, starts on the 8th.)
Thursdays 10.00am Plympton drop-in group at The Brook Inn (£5.00) We’re back on 10th.
Fridays 10.30am The Sunflower Women’s Centre (we’re back on 11th).
Fridays 1.00pm Ocean Studios, Royal William Yard (we’re back on 11th).


Full details on how to attend these groups are hereMindful Art Community Groups For most groups booking is essential due to Covid-19 safety recommendations. 


All our groups are held with Covid-19 safety measures in place, but please check the ‘Groups’ page on our website before travelling, in case there are new government guidelines affecting our meetings. 

If you don’t feel safe coming to a group at the moment we totally understand. Support groups are legally allowed to meet, and we have carried out a risk assessment on our work. But if you cannot join us in person we hope some of our YouTube videos might help you to feel less isolated. If you’re on Facebook you could also join our Mindful Art Club group to stay in touch with others who come to our sessions. It’s a place to chat, maintain connections, support one another, and share your art from the Zoom sessions. You may also like to join our mailing list to get the free mindful colouring bundle.


Looking forward to seeing you again.

Peggy and Emma

Order Christmas Cards Now

When they are not running Mindful Art Club, Emma and Peggy are both practicing artists. If you would like to order a set of Christmas cards designed by Peggy, order as soon as possible to get delivery by early December.

Christmas Cards 2017High quality box set of 25 cards with a selection of quirky fun images, and fine art designs by Peggy Pegworth, supplied with 25 white envelopes.

In this video Peggy opens her luxury box set of unique Christmas cards, sniffs the smell of newly printed paper, and does a surprisingly brief Christmas dance.

See all the designs here: Christmas Cards, 25 Pack.

Note for 2020: The “I am an Oeuf” Christmas design shown in the video has been discontinued.

VAT included.
Message inside each card reads; ‘Merry Christmas.’
Item total: £28.10
Postage and packing: £6.90

TOTAL: £35.00 GBP

Please allow 14 days for delivery.

Buy Now.

Emma Goes Live on the Radio

Emma Sprawson talks to Lester Jones on the morning show at Omnium Radio, (20/11/20) about Mindful Art Club(R), a unique support group, that tackles social isolation and mental health in Plymouth, Devon, UK.

Listen now to find out how Mindful Art Club continues to bring people together in a safe way, during a year when we were asked to socially distance ourselves from one another.

Skip to seven minutes in to try a quick mindful drawing exercise.

Try an online group or grab some free mindful colouring pages by signing up to our mailing list. (We never sell or share email addresses, we only send you a friendly monthly message to tell you about our latest low-cost, local events.)

Double Win For Community Art Group

We were pleased to see we’ve hit the headlines again, on page 11 of The Plymouth Chronicle. You can read the latest issue online.

Double Win for Community Art Group

Plymouth’s first and only Mindful Art Club are celebrating receiving £250 funding, and £3000 worth of business support. The £250 was awarded to them by Plymouth Octopus Project, to cover some of their volunteer expenses, and the year-long business support package has been offered to them by The Real Ideas Organisation.

Peggy Melmoth and Emma Sprawson had only been running community art groups for a few months when the coronavirus lockdown forced them to cancel all of their groups. They immediately began offering online versions of all their sessions using Zoom video conferencing software and broadcasting to Facebook Live. Before lockdown their groups had been part-funded by individual voluntary donations, but since the end of March 2020 Peggy and Emma have been running the groups purely as a volunteers.

When lockdown restrictions began to ease in July, they started running small outdoor mindful art groups in a park in Plympton, and then in August they launched a new weekly group at The Sunflower Women’s Centre in Plymouth. They now run four weekly groups around Plympton and Plymouth, and continue to run their free online group for those who can’t make it to a real-life session.

“We started Mindful Art Club to improve mental health and social connection in the Plymouth community by offering mutual aid support groups, and teaching mindfulness and art for self-care. We were literally trying to fight social isolation at a time when we were all advised to isolate ourselves!”

Peggy

“We used to be part of the support team at Broadreach House addiction treatment centre. When Broadreach closed last year we were both made redundant, but decided that we still wanted to use our skills to support people in the community.”

Emma

In October The Real Ideas Organisation offered a number of free membership packages worth over £3,000 each, to entrepreneurial people with ideas that they thought could become brilliant businesses. To apply for a fully funded Start Something membership Peggy and Emma submitted a written business proposal and a three minute video outlining their ideas.

Peggy said, “We are so excited to win this, and are really looking forward to networking with the other businesses that won a place.”

The fully funded membership package from Real Ideas gives Mindful Art Club access to workspace at Ocean Studios in Royal William Yard, business support mentors and access to events, workshops and one to one coaching. The Start Something project is part of the iMayflower project and has been supported by The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, who fund the Cultural Development Fund, which is administered by Arts Council England.

Emma said, “Just after winning the Start Something membership we also received £250 funding from Plymouth Octopus Project (POP), which covers some of our expenses volunteering at The Sunflower Women’s Centre.”

POP offers funding advice, business and planning support to Plymouth’s voluntary sector.

The Sunflower Women’s Centre is a women’s only outreach centre set up by Trevi House in 2016. Sunflower is a trauma-informed women’s wellbeing hub, providing opportunities for any woman who has support needs.

“We have been very happy to have had Peggy and Emma come into the Sunflower Women’s Centre  and give their time volunteering to run their wonderful Mindful Art group for our women.  This has been a valuable service and given many of our women support and some purpose and stability, with their patience and gentle listening ears during the lockdown period.”

Paula Carnell, Team Lead

To keep updated about Mindful Art Club’s latest weekly groups, online sessions and wellbeing courses sign up to the mailing list in the top right corner. We’ll send you some mindful colouring pages to soothe your mind while at home!