Richard has produced arts projects in museums, galleries, schools, hospitals, libraries, and in community venues across the Midlands, primarily with and for young people. He has experience creating and delivering workshops, conferences, events, exhibitions and focus groups online and offline. He strongly believes in producing arts work collaboratively, by working with people, workshopping ideas, and drawing on diverse experiences and expertise to create work people want to see and do. As part of this collaborative working, Richard believes it is essential to work from the board room to the community group, and he has experience feeding into strategic planning to create an arts environment appropriate for the 21st century. He particularly values working in small teams, including in a management position, because he knows this is where projects come together in interesting and unpredictible ways.
Richard has also worked with young people since 2011, first on the front lines, supporting projects to enhance aspiration in working-class communities, and second, as a producer and project manager in the arts, delivering opportunities for young people to learn about their own histories and develop skills to help them achieve their personal goals. He worked within Nottingham Trent's outreach departments, as well as in several arts organisations.
Accustomed to working in various contexts on both long- and short-term projects, Richard can easily work in a team as well as remotely to support the creation of educational materials, arts enrichment activities, and sessions to enhance aspiration with in-need groups, while also supporting teachers to embed materials into their future teaching practice.
'Your input [...] has been inspirational, and because of you and your team's enthusiasm and commitment, I have been dedicating an awful lot of time recently to relaunching the reading culture in our school. It really is slowly starting to become a much more positive and visual part of the school and the children are beginning to re-engage again with reading. Our preparations for World Book Day 2020 are really exciting and we are hoping to make this the best ever.' (Teacher, 2020).
In late-2019/early-2020, I organised workshops for young people at an NHS Youth Centre and commissioned poet and workshop facilitator, Leanne Moden. Leanne had this to say when working with me:
'Richard's organised, thoughtful and engaged approach to producing the project really helped me to focus on delivering the sessions; he was calm, professional and friendly throughout the project, and really supported me in the initial stages, when we were getting things off the ground. I was really impressed with Richard's problem-solving skills, and his ability to work well with the young people, the NHS volunteers and the management team in order to ensure the project was delivered on time, on budget and with a high level of satisfaction across all participant groups. I would definitely work with Richard again in the future.' (Leanne Moden, Poet and Workshop Facilitator, 2020).
Culture Club was delivered online to 15 young people in Birmingham. Young people explored their cultural identities through art, spoken word, and fashion.
Letters of Solidarity resources, including Activity Pack, letter writing templates, wallet, and MyVoice Anthology, Speak Up! An Anthology of Young Voices. This pack was distributed to households without access to the internet, devices, or printers in Nottingham in the summer of 2020 during the coronavirus outbreak.
Virtual MyVoice with Nottingham UNESCO City of Literature
Filmed by the perfomers and Makermet Creative.
This event was re-made into its eventual online format in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak.
As always, a huge congratulations to the winners of the MyVoice Creative Writing Competition.
Speak Up! anthology, published by White Shed and Nottingham UNESCO City of Literature.
20 competition entrants were selected for publication in four categories (10-13, 14-16, 17-19, 20-25) by five judges (Bali Rai, Becky Cullen, Kim Slater, Georgina Wilding, and Young Ambassador Danica). The anthology was published and launched in April 2020 during the Virtual MyVoice event (see above).
An incredible achievement by Nottingham's new and young pool of writing talent. They were published here first.
Movements (2018) with Nottingham Trent University, University of Nottingham and Midlands3Cities.