Volunteering - all year

So I've volunteered as a teacher and a teaching assistant a couple of times this year that I'd like to talk about here too.

The first of these opportunities was one of the teaching opportunities. It was for the LEAPS creative extras week back in the earlier part of the year. I can't remember exactly when but it was fairly early on.

My job was to program a class and teach it to a group of students interested in animation who were signed up to do the course. It was just a few hours in one afternoon but it was really fun.

The course I put together involved learning how we accept visual clues when we watch films or shows and how to create those cues both in individual characters and also in narratives. To do that I showed them a small powerpoint so that they understood what I was talking about and then I explained to them how to do the activities I had planned. I had planned to do three. Character exquisite corpses, storyboard exquisite corpses and finally make some thaumatropes.

I remember this one as being really very stressful because I was told on the day of that more people had signed up for my course than any other that was offered. That put a lot of pressure on me. But I think it went ok, I didn't panic too much and Fracesca was my teaching assistant which really helped me out. The kids seemed as engaged as they possibly could, you know, being teenagers. I got some good feedback from Alice at LEAPS following the day too.

You can check out the powerpoint I made for that program in my dropbox.

The next educating experience I had was one out at Dean's Community High School. I accompanied Marvel comic book artist Gary Erskine out to a workshop he had organised with a couple of the local schools who's pupils were interested in studying at art schools and had particular interest in movies, or illustration. Gary was doing this as an extension of the ACES program, which I was a part of before. That's why I was asked to come along, because I was to give the slightly more aces lead talk before Gary's. I was chosen because my discipline much more closely linked to Gary. I was to talk about my own work and experiences at ACES and then also at high school. I showed them my showreel and I talked for a bit about some other elements that had been successful for me and of course what I got out of ACES. Following that Gary took over with his workshop and I stuck around to help people who got stuck, offer them prompts and ask them questions about their work.

Here's a picture of me at the workshop while Gary does his thing and I just stand there with a few of his comics looking for unsuspecting teenagers to interrogate/ bestow my wisdom upon

Lastly and most recently I was involved with a company called STOPMOGO run by a really nice woman called Emma. I was assisting her in the running of a workshop at the mini maker's faire during the Edinburgh Science Festival. I had to dress in lots of luminous colours and teach children how to make stop motion under a rostrum camera. It was a long and busy day and I felt very guilty taking lunch because of how busy we were but in the end it was a lot of fun and a really good experience. When it began to quieten down I sat with a few of the children and made a thaumatrope with them (which I have physically handed in). I really enjoyed it and I'm hoping some shots of me working show up in the best bits video when they get around to making it. But I keep checking and they haven't made it yet so I'll just... keep waiting I guess. In the mean time here's some pictures of us Emma sent me!

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