Grayson's Art Club: the exhibition aired on Channel 4 last night and I've been overwhelmed with messages of thanks and about how I've inspired and blessed people.
So now it's my turn to share a rough and ready list of how Grayson and the Art Club team have inspired and blessed me.
Talking to Grayson for the first show. Almost an out of body experience. Being such a fan girl and proud of it.
Grayson's ability to connect so quickly and make me feel relaxed so I could chat to him just as I would a friend
Having Grayson affirm that my creativity is artistic, it's not "just" anything, it's art.
Resting in the idea that I might be an artist because we're all artists when we create to express ourselves
Realising that all drawing and painting and sculpting and making is art, it doesn't have to be a certain standard to achieve that title.
Creating is art.
Dictionary definitions of art
Art: the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination, typically in a visual form such as painting or sculpture, producing works to be appreciated primarily for their beauty or emotional power.
Art: the various branches of creative activity, such as painting, music, literature, and dance
Watching the entire first series and feeling even more inspired to keep creating.
Realising the truth in the lack of access to the arts for disabled people both to appreciate and to participate
Spotting art everywhere and in everything.
Encouraging people to embrace their creativity and express themselves by creating in whatever way works for them
Fully taking on the identity of a creative person, of a poet, a writer, an artist.
The exhibition and lots of conversations and emails with the curators.
Their idea to display the entire sketch book rather than just the sketch.
Fiona, who was on the show, recommended that I should keep the sketch in the book as a record of my creativity and that the whole book should go on display. Thar made me feel like an actual artist at every step, it was so affirming
The process of deciding what would go on the information panel next to my artwork in the exhibition. The curators encouragement to share what felt real for me because that matters
Grayson wanting to visit me, the idea that I might have something to say that he and the producers thought needed to be heard - yet not being prescriptive about what that would be - was hugely affirming.
Insight into the world of creating TV programmes with lots of extra bits for editing.
An hour with Grayson, Neil and Adam in the garden!!!
General conversation about creativity and society and faith and accessibility and inclusiveness and politics and life and cats
Being interviewed by Grayson and talking about many different aspects of life in lockdown and creativity and disability and hope and hope and hope.
The joy of meeting the man I have been so inspired by and being inspired even more.
The genuine sadness the team felt that I wouldn't be able to get to Manchester to visit the exhibition. The way they wanted to make it so I could visit it somehow.
Photo by Andrew Brooks
Zoom tour of the exhibition, the time that Grayson and Philippa and the team gave me to see it in all its glory.
The way Grayson helped me get up close so that these artworks filled my computer screen so I could see them - better than I will be able to in real life I think.
The joy of laughing together and noticing together and appreciating people's amazing art together.
The overwhelming feeling of seeing my sketch and poem presented in a display cabinet in an art gallery.
The realisation that people will come and look at it and that it might encourage them to express themselves through sketching or writing.
The messages of love and care from the team and Grayson and Philippa when I caught covid and was so ill.
The turning on its head of the idea that all media people are in it for themselves - it's not true of these people.
The messages from the team before this exhibition show went out letting me know that they loved my contribution. Affirming me and reassuring me not to be fearful of what would make the edit.
The amazing show itself which had me in tears both happy and sad.
The tweets and messages during and since the show from friends and strangers. The reminder, whilst I'm feeling so low emotionally and physically as I slowly recover from covid, that just being me and sharing my truth can bless people and give them hope.
Hope for the world as we emerge from the pandemic together
Hope for the arts generally. Grayson's Art Club has connected with so many who might never have thought about going to an art gallery and hopefully that will have made art galleries even more accessible for everyone
Hope for an increase in people being creative for creativities sake
Hope for the goodness of people
Hope for more accessibility
Hope for the future
It has been amazing to be a tiny part of the Art Club; these are just some of the blessings. Thank you Grayson, Philippa, Neil, Adam, Fiona and everyone who has blessed me.
I'll finish with this quote from the programme from me
"I never realised how powerful creating could be, until I was in a situation where ever other tool I had in the toolbox for looking after myself had vanished"