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Creative Arts Project attendees create “COVID Emotions” themed ceramic pieces

Attendees of Ambient’s Credo create “COVID Emotions” ceramic pieces to explore the impact of the pandemic and creativity on their mental health, a special one-off project funded by SMILE South East Maudsley Hospital.

Credo is our Creative Arts Project based in the London Borough of Bromley. The project is especially for people with lived experience of mental ill-health. During the COVID lockdowns, many attendees missed the structure and creative environment that Credo provides. On their return to the studio, the students started on a project called “COVID Emotions”, funded by SMILE South East Maudsley Hospital. Through the medium of clay, they explored their personal experience of COVID, and how it impacted them.

Attendees used photo transfers to complete their final pieces. This included photos from during lockdowns, or images of things and people that they loved who helped them through difficult moments. Other final pieces were more objective, such as clay recreations of LFT tests, or a face wearing a blue mask.

One student of Credo said: “I’ve been coming here since it first opened, just over ten years. And I came here with really bad mental health problems. Now I actually volunteer and help Jehan out when she needs me, and help other people. If it wasn’t for Credo, I wouldn’t leave my house. But here, I feel safe.”

Another attendee shared: “It gives a bit of structure to my week, and I just love being creative, it really does help chill the mind out. Just sitting down and concentrating on doing something is really good for mental health, when your head’s in a bad way.”

The youngest attendee told us: “Before joining credo I was really lost, in a low place and didn’t have any enjoyment or confidence to step outside of my comfort zone. I have now been coming I think for about 1-2 years. I am one of the youngest members at Credo and I do look up to them as they have taught me to be more open & not say I’m okay when I am really not okay. They’ve really helped me start to use my voice more & the familiar group I attend my classes on Monday with help ease my social anxiety.”

Watch the video for an even closer look at the COVID Emotions ceramics process, and what it’s like at the Credo studio:

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