Perton Creative Hub

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At Perton Library, Ben & Phil at Juneau Projects have worked collaboratively with Perton Crafters, library visitors, staff & volunteers as well as new visitors to the library to form a hub of experimental activity where people of all levels of experience and ability had the opportunity to take part, develop creative skills and try new techniques, including using a risograph print machine. The hub have gone on to produce a series of creative products, including cards, calendars and craft kits aimed at beginners which will be shared with individuals and groups in the community who may be vulnerable, isolating or housebound. Juneau have created a bespoke ‘pop up’ shop to sell the products and help support this ongoing enterprise.

We focused on using risograph printing (like a cross between silk-screen printing and photocopying) as a way of collaborating with people. We set up a temporary print space at Perton Library and invited people to come in and have a go at producing prints, posters, cards and other projects using the risograph machine. The sessions were open to the public, and we also worked specifically with Perton Craft Group who, until lockdown last year, met regularly at Perton Library. Over the weeks of the residency, participants developed their own projects, with our help and guidance, producing a beautiful range of printed materials in a wide variety of styles.

During this time, we also worked with craft group members to design a series of craft kits, with the aim of giving people an introduction to some of the crafting activities that the craft group regularly do.

These free craft kits are distributed at Perton Library via a bespoke display stand we have designed and built for the project. The stand also features an honesty stall, selling some of the amazing print projects produced during the residency, as well as a risograph-printed calendar featuring the work of the group, with profits from the sales of the prints going back into funding the production of further craft kits.

The residency has been a really enjoyable experience for us both. We have really enjoyed seeing how people can use the risograph machine to produce such a range of responses and results, and have loved collaborating with Perton Crafters and the rest of the hub to produce what they hope will be a really useful series of craft kits for the wider community to enjoy.

JUNEAU PROJECTS

Resources

A limited number of free craft kits will be available at the library for beginners to have a go at home. Products made and sold by Perton Crafters will help to support the making of future packs.

Feedback

We asked participants, ‘What have you enjoyed most about this project and what difference has it made?’

‘My first visit! Made me feel very welcome and I’ve been given lots of encouragement and clear instruction. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed being in this group and look forward to the next one’

‘I feel I have actually accomplished something that I’ve wanted to do, something different! Nice to belong to a group’

‘A bit nervous to start with but guidance provided has helped my confidence’

‘Experiencing new techniques and methods’

‘Being with like-minded’ people’

‘Helped me feel I was worthwhile and capable of doing something I didn’t think I could’

‘Yes, definitely feel better about social activity, always happy to come to the library’

‘Helped me feel I was worthwhile and capable of doing something I didn’t think I could’

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