• Boosting 'body image' through life-drawing

    You may have not thought that drawing a life model is good for you, but research now shows, life-drawing has a positive imact on negative body image in adults and most recently in teens.

    (above) 'Creative Thinking Workshop' for year 10 Business Studies class at Penrhos College

    Over the years as I've watched nervous 'beginners' rock up to my 'Charcoal and Champagne' life-drawing classes for adults, as well as my 'Creative Thinking Workshops' which I run for businesses and schools.

    In even the short amount of time we spend together, Im endlessly amazed at the remarkable changes in not just how individuals feel about their 'ability to draw' and their 'creative ability', but also their mind set about how they view the body –  and so it comes no surprise to see the following findings by Professor Viren Swami, from Anglia Ruskin University:

    “Previous studies with adults have shown that life drawing has a positive effect on body image, with evidence coming from cross-sectional, experimental and prospective studies in multiple university and community samples.

    “It’s encouraging to see the same may be the case for adolescents as well.

    “Negative body image is a real public health concern in young people, particularly because of its association with disordered eating and poorer psychological well-being.

    “Our findings are important because they point at an effective means of promoting healthier body image in this age group.

    “Regular life drawing classes have the potential not only to promote a more positive body image, but also to develop more realistic notions of what bodies look like.”

    For girls, life drawing challenged the idea that the perfect body was thin, he said. Boys no longer assumed that they had to be muscular to be attractive.

    Participants also became more respectful of other people’s appearance, the study showed.

    “They were less judgmental about other people they might meet, or how they treat their bodies, what they do with their bodies, or how they clothe their bodies,” said Prof Swami.

    Previous research had shown that around half of young girls and 35% of boys were dissatisfied with their bodies, the professor added.

    The three aspects of body image improved by life drawing were appreciation, acceptance and pride. These related to respecting, feeling good about, and taking care of your body.

    If you are interested in finding out about incorporating a coached life-drawing workshop into your school, community or wellness program please get in touch with Aneta.

  • Art workshop with a little extra heart ...

    Art workshop with a little extra heart ...

    Every so often we get to run workshops for some extra special individuals and organisations.

    We feel privileged to have been invited to run a workshop working with a group of women through Jigsaw, an amazing organisation which provides information, counselling, and intermediary services to people separated from family for many different reasons .. so looking forward to meeting the ladies!

  • Reawaken your 'creative genius'

    Do yourself and your children a favour and watch this video. 

    A NASA study shows how 98% of us go from being a 'creative genius' at 5 years of age ... 30% at 10yo ... 12% at 15yo and only 2% as adults! 

    Nourishing 'Creative Thinking' is not just a nice concept, it is crucial for us as a species to problem-solve and innovate towards a better future ... Dr. George Land illustrates this and where we go wrong with 'divergent vs convergent thinking' beautifully .. and yes 'fear' doesn't help either.

    Good news is ... you can actually "turn your 5 year old self back on".

  • Wesley College teachers take on the Charcoal-Challenge for wellness

    Wesley College teachers take on the Charcoal-Challenge for wellness

    A little peek at some of the bendy Charcoal-Challenge shenanigans with a few of the Wesley College teachers as part of their end-of-year wellness day!

    Some absolutely brilliant 'masterpieces' and no shortage of humour as everyone took on the fun of stepping outside of their comfort zones celebrating the end of the school year & beginning of some well deserved holidays. 

  • The 'BIG DRAWING WORKSHOP' with Charcoal & Champagne

    The 'BIG DRAWING WORKSHOP' with Charcoal & Champagne

    Absolutely thrilled to share with you a tiny taste from the 'BIG DRAWING WORKSHOP' with Charcoal and Champagne over the weekend ...

    It was BIG! it was BOLD, and the charcoal even started to take on some of the colours of the rainbow ! 

    Congratulations to all our brave returning 'budding artists' who dared to take on our biggest challenge yet and created some truly spectacular artworks ... can't wait to share more soon ... x

  • You've come across our Charcoal & Champagne classes, but you're not sure they're for you?

    Here's a little insight into why they might be ... 

    Charcoal and Champagne life-drawing classes are specifically designed to be social and cater for those very individuals who are nervous about drawing or being creative and who might ‘believe' the ‘stickman’ is the limit of their ability.

    Despite this, the classes also work on the ‘personal challenge’ level for people who might have more experience 'being creative', and might like to have a bit of fun pushing themselves out of their comfort zone – yes even artists & creatives have comfort zones.

    Ultimately, it really doesn’t matter who you are and what you think you can achieve creatively – you will simply be challenged in a non-competitive & safe space, to just 'do your best' and take the challenges presented to you by me, Aneta, your personal creativity coach, as inspiration to interpret in your own, unique way.

    There is NO right or wrong in the class. 

    Technique is NOT a focus in the class. 

    Rather, it is a class designed to inspire the personal development of each individuals’ creativity, irrelevant to everyone else in the class.

    Step outside your comfort zone

    The only thing required for someone to participate, is wanting to give something a go that they might not normally get an opportunity to do, and so, allow themselves to have a go at an unique experience, in a unique setting … and ultimately, the opportunity to ‘maybe’ surprise themselves with what they achieve whilst having a bit of fun and a laugh.

    On another level, some might find it a little uncomfortable having a life-model before the class. 

    This is also a unique setting where the human body is celebrated and appreciated in a non-sexual arena. The models are all professional, comfortable with their bodies, and are of various shapes and sizes. 

    I have a strong belief this too provides a healthy attitude to body-image, challenging media perceptions of nudity and its sexualisation. Its a beautiful opportunity for students to respectfully observe and ‘celebrate' the form of the body in the class whilst interpreting to paper what they see. 

    At its very core, I run the classes because I don’t believe in the boxing in of people who ‘are' or 'are not' creative. Creativity is a fundamental part of everyday for everyone – we are born with it, it just needs to be nurtured.

    All art materials are supplied as well as lighting and specially selected music to set the atmosphere and complete the fully immersive, multi-sensory experience.

    Hope this gives you a bit more insight into the Charcoal and Champagne sessions.

    Please feel free to read through some of the testimonials to get more of an idea about what people get out of the sessions, and get in touch if you require any further information.

    "All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up. ” -Pablo Picasso