Pupils have art attack in Oban

EXPERIENCE . . . the trip inspired Taylor HS student Gemma Ross to create this piece. For more pictures, see this week's Times & Speaker.
EXPERIENCE . . . the trip inspired Taylor HS student Gemma Ross to create this piece. For more pictures, see this week's Times & Speaker.

ARTWORK from some of North Lanarkshire’s most talented teenagers has been put on display at the Summerlee Museum in Coatbridge.

The exhibition features examples of visual art, filmmaking, digital photography, printed textiles, jewellery and music, all inspired by the pupils’ time in the council’s annual Creative Residency programme.

Now in its ninth year, the programme offers senior pupils from the area’s schools the opportunity to visit the Kilbowie Outdoor Centre near Oban for a week’s residency and intensive training in various creative disciplines.

Teaming picturesque landscapes with guidance from experienced tutors from top Scottish schools and colleges, the programme aims to allow pupils to develop their artistic skills and unleash their creative potential.

Christine Pollock, executive director of learning and leisure services, said: “The unique set of experiences provided by the Creative Residency gives our young people opportunities to be immersed in the learning experience, free from the normal distractions of contemporary living, and to acquire new skills in their chosen field.”

Promising artist Caitlin Bowman, a pupil at Braidhurst High School, Motherwell, was full of praise for the programme.

She said: “I loved it at Oban. There were no distractions to keep you from drawing and the scenery was amazing.

“Everyone was so nice and the tutors gave great advice and help when you needed it. I learned a lot from the experience.”

Sophie Douglas, a budding jewellery designer and pupil at Taylor High, New Stevenston, highlighted the importance of the programme’s tutors.

She added: “My wonderful mentor Lisa helped me to create my final piece with her advanced knowledge and insight. She helped us with every aspect of the discipline.

“I came away from the residency with confidence in my ideas and imagination. I feel happy with everything I achieved.”

John Weir, the programme’s manager and a visual art tutor, emphasised the impact he feels the Creative Residency has on its participants. He said: “The residency has been, and hopefully will continue to be, a life-changing undertaking for many of North Lanarkshire’s creative individuals.

“I personally will never tire of witnessing the positive impact this experience has had on the young people who have attended.”

The exhibition will be at Summerlee Museum until Sunday, February 24. Admission is free.