Whitstable has always attracted artists and arty types, drawn here by the sea, the skies and the sunsets, not to mention the cutesy houses and colourful beach huts, plus it’s close to charming villages and glorious countryside. All this and Canterbury Cathedral is less than six miles away!
Every day there seems to be a new art gallery opening and there are plenty of shops selling wonderful crafted goods, not to mention Whitstable Harbour Market which opens at the week-ends and bank holidays.
Living in such a creative place as Whitstable has inspired me to start a new business that allows me to use my tourism background and marketing skills and combine these with my love of creative pursuits. The business will promote creative breaks, including painting, crafting, pottery and cookery throughout Kent and is called Create in Kent.
As part of the development process I’ve been undertaking lots of research and am also co-ordinating some two hour taster creative workshops at the Horsebridge Arts and Community Centre at this year’s Whitstable Oyster Festival in July, to find out more about what people would like to do on a short creative break.
I’ve signed up some wonderful people to run the workshops including Charles Newington who will inspire people to work with watercolour and Roy Wilkinson who will to do the same for budding oil painters. Yvonne Fuchs will lead a mixed media workshop for those wishing to explore their personality through a self portrait and Marie Holloway will encourage you to express your creativity through collage.
Peter Leadbeater, who makes fabulous wooden sculptures (often with a chainsaw!),and furniture, will be encouraging others to sculpt using air drying clay.
Jan Lewis and Claudia Benson will provide insights into different ways of working with felt, whilst jeweller, Carla Morris, will show how to knot and string professionally and Keira Walsh will show how to make a beautiful silk and felt bag using embroidery.
Full details about the creative taster workshops can be found at www.createinwhitstable.co.uk Each workshop costs just £5 and all materials will be provided.
I’d like to thank Mitch Robertson at Canterbury City Council for helping me to find some of my workshop providers. Also, Whitstable resident Helen of simplyhdesigns for introducing me to Gillian Goldfinch, who is going to run a beading workshop and Kirsty Southam of www.meplusmolly.co.uk I’m still trying to encourage Helen that she should run a workshop in the future too! She organised a lovely successful craft event a couple of weeks ago and you can read more about it on her blog.
If you are interested in finding out more about my plans for Create in Kent please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org