One of the first community arts projects that I led was the creation of the Bridge of Allan Primary School mosaic. Working with a small creative team drawn from across the primary school, we designed a unique commemorative mosaic panel. Partnering with local Artis Janie Marriot, a group of parents learned mosaic skills. We went on to run workshops with every class - from nursery to P7, including all school staff and teachers . Members of the community were also invited in to take part.
Once complete, we had four panel which together measures 1m by 4m. These pieces then went on tour around local businesses over the Summer holiday, forming a treasure trail for the pupils and their families to follow.
The mosaic was such a great hit with the community that a copy has been made and fixed in The Howf, a popular seating spot at the entrance to the village. Here it is being unveiled by some of the children involved in its design, along with Friends of Bridge of Allan who sponsored the reproduction.
I launched a new product this month, available exclusively at Made in Stirling.
A range of colorful, quality coffee mugs with local scenes - they will make a great addition to your mug rack!
They are beautiful, if I may say so myself!
Local artist Jaine Marriott has been working with all of the schools in Dunblane to create a wonderful series of mosaic panels which will adorn the new bridge and town centre as part of a major redevelopment programme. I joined her at Dunblane High School to record the work of the pupils there. Children from schools across the town have been able to participate and so contribute to this wonderful piece of community art. Going back to school for the day was great fun!
Stirling has become famous for the' Daily Mile' school health and well-being initiative. St Ninian's Primary School are leading the way with their simple sporting idea and it has gone viral! Leading the way with their Daily Mile, the creative elements have been embraced as part of a local community art project. Working with film maker Gill White and animator Selina Wagner, the children of St Ninians are contributing to an augmented reality (AR) art project as part of the Seaforth building project. I visited the school and photographed the artists at work with the children.
A new development has sprung up in the city centre, providing housing and new retail space close to Stirling's station. This is the start of a major redevelopment plan for the city and this new and iconic building has been built on the site of the old cinema. Creative Stirling CIC worked with Stirling Development Agency in the commissioning of art work to adorn the new building. Creative Stirling said "Sculptor Andy Hazell and Digital Artist Fraser Ross have been commissioned to make an interactive piece of public art that will be themed around celebrating the uniqueness of Stirling through its people; exploring the long list of extraordinary individuals who have made a contribution to history as innovators, champions, explorers, cultural icons and heroes." So I was delighted to be commissioned to photograph the sculptures when they were finally in place. What a thrill getting up close and personal with these beautiful sculptures.
Out and about with residents from Stirling's Old Town photographing what is great and what could be better all around the neighborhood. The Mercat Cross and Town Centre Community Council are working to influence investment in their part of city. As part of this they created a exhibition to stimulate debate and share their ideas and visions. We worked with them on a series of workshops and a touring exhibition which was shared with residents, business owners, planners and Councillors at venues across the city. We also had fun on the open days with dressing up and photos
What a fantastic Month, what a fantastic Year!
Picture the Possible is all grown up and is now a fully fledged social enterprise and incorporated as a private limited company! We are now officially known as Picture the Possible Limited! A great step forward in the development of our business and for the work that we do.
Also in October, Founding Director and CEO Janie Meikle Bland became a Fellow of the School for Social Entrepreneurs. Following an amazing year on the Bank of Scotland sponsored programme Janie, along with 17 other inspirational social entrepreneurs, graduated at a wonderful ceremony at the bank's headquarters at The Mound in Edinburgh. The evening was led by Tracey Muirhead, CEO of the School for Social Entrepreneurs in Scotland and attended by sponsors, mentors and those who have recently won their place on the 2015 programme. The Mound was buzzing - a fitting highlight and end to an amazing programme.
Certificate presented by Donald Gateley, Head of Private Banking - Scotland
Here are a few of the comments received by Tracey after the event.
''Just in the cab home after an absolutely fantastic night. Truly inspirational, energising and.......humbling. Delighted to have been involved and to hear such brilliant stories.''Donald Gateley
'' Wow Tracey….. am on the train home from the SSE graduation and buzzing! What a brilliant evening - inspiring, emotional and funny (in pretty even proportion, inspiring probably edges it!). Tracey, you must be enormously proud and how lovely to have your input recognised so beautifully and eloquently by all your new fellows.''
Rach, Bank of Scotland
'' Hi, Tracy, I thoroughly enjoyed last night. What you have achieved is remarkable and a testament to your skills and enthusiasm. The quality of last nights entrepreneurs was inspiring as was their confidence and infectious enthusiasm. It was a pleasure to meet you at last and I look forward to our meeting in the near future. Kindest regards ''
Chairman, On Yer Bike Ayrshire!
If you have a great business idea with a social mission, learn more about the School for Social Entrepreneurs Scotland and how you might be part of it here
Picture the Possible Ltd, Registered in Scotland, Company Number 518226
As part of Doors Open Day 2015, we enjoyed a great partnership with Historic Scotland, Creative Stirling, Stirling Libraries and Archives and Bricks4Kidz - putting together an exciting programme of activities which engaged young people creatively with their environment. With Picture the Past! we ran three weekend photography workshops and produced a digital photographic exhibition to share at The Engine Shed - Historic Scotland's National Conservation Centre in Stirling.
Picture the Possible's project took young people into the Old Town of Stirling. With the help of an 1820's map by John Wood, provided by Stirling Archives, our young photographers learned how the city has grown and changed over the recent past. Navigating the old streets, discovering little known corners and exploring the built environment, their photographs formed a central part of the Doors Open Day exhibition in September. A fun, educational and unique partnership, where the young photographers made a great contribution to Stirling's celebration of European Heritage day!
Have a look at the wonderful old map we used
What a talented group of young photographers! This Summer we worked in partnership with local business, Country Pursuits, giving keen young photographers the opportunity to learn about photography whilst exploring their village. They worked together to produce an astounding portfolio of photographs which are now on exhibition in Country Pursuits!
On top of that most exciting accolade, they have now been invited by Visit Bridge of Allan to sell their work in support a local community project!
'Light Up BofA' is a campaign to bring a little Christmas sparkle to their village. So their art will be available to buy from Country Pursuits and all proceeds will support the Christmas community fundraising campaign. Then they really will have their names in lights!
How lucky am I? I've just completed a great project with Discover Dunblane, creating a portfolio of photographs to support their Business Improvement District campaign. I had the pleasure of meeting many of the local business owners to take their portraits. I also walked the length and breadth of the village, exploring little known vantage points, to capture images which reflect the spirit of this charming little city. My idea of a perfect job and a happy customer too!
''Many, many thanks once again for what you have delivered, in terms of quality, timescales and cost. You have enabled Discover Dunblane to reach a significant milestone.''
Tom Casey, Chair, Discover Dunblane BID. December, 2014
Janie Meikle Bland