This years Wild Art on Wimbledon Common was conceived and designed by artist and forest school practitioner Philippa Snell. Due to last minute unforeseen circumstances Philippa was unable to lead the course but our team were able to deliver the course with her expert tutelage!
We prepared our kit, then welcomed the children.
We began with a full health and safety briefing, a walk around the boundary of our camp and some lessons in how to use sharp tools like saws, loppers and secateurs.
Adults to do the sawing and gloves were worn when using secateurs
We began to set the scene for the next 2 days by explaining Samhain - a time when the the veil between worlds is at its thinnest. The children prepared portals to other worlds by making ground pictures. This got our imaginations going and stories started to emerge.
We explored our surroundings and experimented with the materials available to us. Moss, ferns, logs, leaves and berries.
Or clock-like time machines, took you to another time.
with amazing engineering skills!
We took a tour of each others villages explained their properties and introduced their people.
After lunch and a good run around we learnt how to make lanterns out of willow. Lanterns were traditionally hung outside houses at Samhain to show ancestors the way.
We stripped willow branches and made a circle.
Once we had the shape, we collected the best of the autumn leaves to weave into the frame.
We had to weave wool around the frame then poke in leaves and ferns.
Tomorrow we will continue to explore the theme of otherworld and see what other spirits we can release. We will start the day with a little mud sculpting!
Thank you to Philippa for all her expert guidance – we think she was speaking to us through the portals as we worked!