The Journey So Far… Apprentice Meg talks about her experiences

Date Created: 25th Sep 2018

Young people exploring an art gallery exhibition with black and white photographs of men lining the walls

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Artsmark and Arts Award Apprentice Meg reflects on the essential skills she has developed on her apprenticeship journey as well as the opportunities she has had to explore her creativity…

I am now seven months into my Community Arts Administration apprenticeship and I feel I can confidently say I have developed within my role in many ways that will be useful to me in the future. For example, my skills  using software such as Microsoft Excel have grown as I now know shortcuts and tools that are useful in terms of saving time. I value this as in future jobs, these basic computer skills will be essential. This opportunity has also taught me how to manage workload and reach deadlines effectively within an office environment, which is different to what I had experienced prior. In my previous roles, the type of organisational skills I had to possess was more primary and instant, for example a customer enquiring about something or requiring a product from the stockroom. My role at Artswork, provides a necessity in note making in my diary and ensuring I meet different dated deadlines for multiple aspects of work.

Additionally, I have been able to practice my journalism through having the opportunity to write monthly articles for the organisation’s website- often about a range of events which I have also had the privilege to attend. I have had the chance to network with  like-minded individuals who have relevant knowledge and extensive experience within the arts and cultural sector, which I hope to continue working in. I have gained advice on handling aspects of the environment, which can often be difficult to access. As well as this, I have found out about local organisations and venues that are of interest to me and my creative practices, which I wouldn’t have known about without making these connections.

In July I began the process of building my Silver Arts Award portfolio and attending weekly Artswork Creative Enterprise Programme Training with other creative young people which after two busy and exciting months, will finish at the beginning of October for us all. These sessions have meant we have been visiting arts and cultural venues in both Southampton and Portsmouth and undertaking a range of sessions, often with guest speakers working within the sector.

 

The most enjoyable sessions for me so far include our ‘Psycho-Geographic Art’ session which was led by local artist Matt Fletcher, and consisted of him teaching us how to create abstract art through accumulating sights, sounds, scenes and smells we had noticed through a regular walk around the city centre. I enjoyed this as it re-iterated that to create art, you don’t always have to travel to a conventionally picturesque landscape or think about a definitive concept. Art – and that inspiration to create it- is around us all the time and we can embody our experience of the environment within a piece and create something intriguing and relatable.

Three young people sit around a table in an art studio working on ideas

I also thoroughly enjoyed meeting Hannah Murphy of Globefit, who facilitated a hula- hooping class for us all through sharing many of her techniques and ‘tricks’. It was a very different way to exercise which I wouldn’t have considered doing prior, however I found learning various moves lots of fun and something I could get quite wrapped up in! Hannah also gave an inspiring speech focused on her experience with setting up her business individually as encouragement and advice for our own endeavours, which I know many of the class found helpful as this is an employment route they hope to pursue themselves.

I am looking forward to developing additional new, specific skills in my job role through my remaining five months at Artswork and gaining an understanding of what elements of work I thrive best within. More immediately, I am keen to see how my Arts Award leadership project (which is centred around bringing the office staff together to paint on a collaborative canvas) turns out, and hope that this will enhance my independence and confidence within my own ability of teaching this art form.

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Artswork Creative Enterprise Programme For 15 – 25 yrs Work-based learning

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