Broadening Beneath Your Horizons

On Facebook I am regularly treated to photos of places I’ve never been and worlds I’ve never seen despite having been in the vicinity.

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Here are some from my friend, Julie Jones, giving a glimpse of the underwater universe near a relatively local pier that I have visited often, without imagining this view or appreciating the beauty that lay below.

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In the same way writers and artists convey new perspectives, sharing unseen landscapes and drawing out narratives that may otherwise be missed. And the aim is usually the sharing of knowledge, communication and to make people think.

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For some arts practitioners, it is to make people think – differently. The idea is to lead the viewer/reader to a more rounded understanding and it is usually done in a manner that facilitates seeing differently.

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In my Mind Drawings I place objects out of context, on different angles, often disassembled and placed with other apparently unrelated elements. I am very interested in how people see and how the creative mind works in interpreting the world and finding stories.

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In some of my workshops participants use Mind Drawing as a starting place for creative writing.

IMG_7808.PNGIn others I show them how to make a grid of symbols to represent their story elements. This is particularly useful for new residents, especially from other cultures, who don’t have enough knowledge of English to write the stories they wish to share.

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Using picture symbols is also a good idea for children who are still developing their literacy skills. Often their grids can be read in several directions. That could be handy in writing any fiction. In fact many writers use the story board or its equivalent in programs such as Scrivener.

Everyone has a story to tell and there is much to learn from each other. I’m happy to have found the arts to be so inclusive and an excellent vehicle for new understanding.

I feel privileged to be in a position to offer tools to facilitate communication. My life has been enriched by the stories discovered in my community and my community has been enriched by the diverse cultural experiences we can all share and celebrate.

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