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QMH Self Expression

8th February 2021

In November last year, QMH pupils were challenged to express their emotions from 2020 and how they wanted to welcome 2021 in any form of application through mixed media. Our Artist in Residence, Emma Trussler, held and judged the competition.

“I have been absolutely blown away by the amount of talent that the First and Second Years have been able to submit for their Competition entries. It was truly difficult to only pick 5 winners out of the 22 entries; therefore, I was able to get the contribution from the Art Department to pick and as a cohort decided on the winners. They are as follows

1st – Alia
2nd – Robyn
3rd – William
Runner Ups
1st – Charlie
2nd – William

Thank you to all those who entered, and I would love to see you all when you come back and be able to congratulate you all in person.

I would like to add that although we are still facing similar challenges to those of 2020, I hope to see you all grow and continue your marvellous work. Try to view art as an outlet which enables calm through a sense of escapism and relaxation through the release of creative energy. Art in any form or medium has empowered me to have a sense of mental wellbeing and to remain calm despite the difficulties, I hope it can with you too. The benefits can be outstanding. Keep on making and keep on being creative and expressive, I truly look forward to all future work you may do.

Thank you and I hope 2021 be a brighter year for you all and keep on creating and expressing.”

Well done and congratulations to all that applied.

Our Head of Art and Photography Caroline Shouksmith had the following to add:

“The challenge of judging the art competition entries from QMH has been almost impossible. The standard of entries and the care and thought that pupils have invested is quite special. Choosing winners was an incredibly difficult process and all members of the art department were involved. We are so proud of all entrants and will be awarding a distinction and a small prize to all those who took part in addition to some exciting prizes being awarded to winners.

We all had our favourites or pieces that touched us on a personal level, and I asked our art community to say a few words about one piece of their choice (mine is below). Art is both created and received on such a personal level and good art communicates something or resonates with members of the receiving audience. Whilst we couldn’t mention every piece here, I hope you get a feel for the fact that all of the entries found an appreciative audience giving us something to celebrate and enjoy.

It also offered pupils an opportunity to express their feelings about the pandemic processing these safely through creative actions and it gives us a window on their experience of the past year and their optimism for the future.

I am extremely grateful to our Artist-in-Residence Emma Trussler for planning, organising, and realizing this event. It takes an enormous amount of time and effort to run such competitions and in addition she also galvanised the first and second form pupils into spectacular action resulting in 22 superb entries.”

Some remarks from the Art Department.

This piece by Charlie is exceptional as I always feel that my escapism is to be outside and I am able to capture inspiration from walking which is what he was able to do. The beautiful detailing in the trees and even the motion given in the land and sky has been created by the layering in using different stroke patterns and colourings, this allows the viewer to have the feeling as though they are immersed in his journey and be able to feel the ambience in the atmosphere – Miss E Trussler (Artist in Residence)

I felt that the filmstrip was innovative approach to this artwork that allowed for a multitude of different events and emotions to be expressed. There has obviously been a lot of thought behind this idea and I like that it works like a storyboard screenplay for a documentary style short film, covering ten months in lockdown. The images are lovingly drawn and many are beautifully detailed, such as the notices on mother’s door. Very well done and keep on drawing! – Andy Bardell (Art Technician)

This piece is very bright and colourful and definitely plays a wonderful tribute to the NHS, it is very evident that a lot of time and effort and hard work went into this artwork. Hope is definitely something we must all keep onto and hold within our hearts in these times, a very well done all around – Miss A Cutler (Graduate Assistant Art)

I wanted to give a special mention to the delightful painting of a bird in a winter tree. The whole painting has a stark cold feel to it that reflected for me, the sadness and challenges that humanity faced during 2020. On closer inspection we can see that the bird attends a nest full of eggs and so shows us the hope for 2021. I love the simplicity and honesty of this piece. – Mrs C Shouksmith (Head of Art)

Water has wonderful calming qualities for me, so I was drawn to the blue rockpool artwork. On looking closer I saw the playful addition of the bathing monkeys. The subtle comedy of the artwork brought me joy and a smile to my face! This would also be how I would like to escape lockdown. – Mrs Moore (Teacher of Art)

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