‘Our Story’, funded by York’s Youth Development Team, is coming to an end. New Visuality has worked with 40 young learners since February 2017. Each participant completed a week long Art Camp. Says New Visuality teacher Matt Brown, “We teach the traditional art skills flagged up by participants as areas they’d like to improve. Using these new creative skills, we focused on two outcomes. An illustrated magazine based on local events, and a short digital animation, both addressing local stories and characters in an aspirational way. We made heavy use of cutting edge innovation to code visuals for the animation. We feel that visual ownership of their area’s stories and characters, through digital comic strips, with a focus on positive aspirations, helps address the disadvantages of economic deprivation for the young people. THEY are the storytellers, the characters, the architects and the protagonists.”
Keith Myers, Acomb councillor, founder and organiser of the ADAM festival, welcomed the team and their accompnaying art at ADAM 2017:. “‘OurStory’, with artists sourced from Acomb based schools, is a great idea to combat stereotypes regarding Acomb. Using the digital innovation on hand to encourage engagement at the proposed Creative Camp is a great way to get the message out that ADAM festival welcomes all. Following on from last year, we’re looking forward to exhibiting the artwork and offering work experience at this year’s ADAM.”
New Visuality Chair Alaa Jasim is delighted with how successful the project has been. “Telling their stories via comic strips and gaming with a team of other young people gives the young people a vibrant, purposeful activity. Exhibiting the work, both physically and via digital projection, helped and continues to help improve social cohesion and integration in the community as it brings a wide range of individuals together in an exciting, creative way. Sessions relied on positive teamwork and liaising with community businesses. The funding has gone a long way, and the best of it is that the project is sustainable – the young learners are now in a position to assist younger artists in harnessing their own creative objectives. In this way, ‘Our Story’ has been the most fertile project we’ve ever ran.”
‘Our Story: Comics and Gaming’ was funded by York’s Youth Development Team.