Lowestoft could discover love of art

MANY of us admire a stunning painting, thinking how nice it would be to have a similar talent.

But creating eye-catching pieces of art should soon become a reality for hundreds of people in the Lowestoft area, thanks to the combined efforts of a local artist and a community group.

From September, artist Phil Strevens will be setting up a series of art taster sessions across the town – at venues including the Asda store in Horn Hill.

Mr Strevens, 42, is setting up the lessons after he was given a �250 bursary from the Society of All Artists to extend his work introducing art to people through the Lowestoft-based Yard Project.

He has been teaching art at easy-to-learn lessons at The Yard in Ashby Road every Monday since February.

About 15 people have taken advantage of the six lessons, with the novice artists using pastels to draw a range of subjects including animals, buildings and landmarks. They have proved so popular that many of the people have continued to go to The Yard to improve their artistic skills and receive further tuition.

Mr Strevens is now looking forward to setting up the taster sessions which he hopes will attract even more people to the Monday art sessions.

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He said: 'The idea of the taster sessions is to get as many people in the community as possible to take the opportunity to become involved in art. I now want to get out in Lowestoft, hopefully to four venues, and show people that there is nothing to be afraid of taking up art.'

Robert Cousin, 42, has been going to the Yard Project art sessions for several months and spent Monday finishing off his pastel drawing of Stonehenge.

He said: 'I have not done any art since school. I came here as I wanted to try something different. The lessons are really good. He (Mr Strevens) takes you through all the different techniques.'

Mr Strevens's pastel drawing classes are held on Mondays between 10am and 3pm and people are asked to make a donation of �2.50 per hour. They form part of the Yard Project's plan to expand its work into the community by offering activities such as a daytime pottery classes and groups covering knitting, stitching, yarn and beading.

The project, which was formed in 2009, also has plans for more group sessions and workshops covering singing, storytelling and writing, digital photography and jewellery making.

? For information on activities at the Yard Project, including the pastel drawing sessions on Mondays, call 01502 584305 or 07825 095724 or email theyardproject@hotmail.co.uk

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