15th January 2019
Continuing with our series exploring the benefits of the professional development programme at Cockpit Arts, we come to the important sense of community that exists here.
The London Creative Network (LCN) programme enhances this by bringing into the mix makers who have studios elsewhere, work in a range of disciplines and are at different stages of development. Our workshop topics are varied and the style is interactive, so makers get to share experiences in an extremely open and supportive environment.
Here’s what some of the craftspeople say: Jasmine Carey who runs the Deco22 brand, creating handcrafted limited edition coats and fashion accessories explains, “Interacting with others on the programme was valuable; it helped me to see that others face the same challenges as me, whether they have been trading for one year or ten years.”
Echoed by another Cockpit Arts based maker Olivia Holland, a textile designer specialising in knitwear, “I have been lucky enough to attend workshops with people who have given me invaluable insight into the industry I am trying to become known in. As a young brand, it has been so helpful to hear from designers who have been in business for much longer than me, to gain feedback and advice from them has been fantastic.”
We often see ‘early-stage’ makers helping more established businesses with areas like social media and more experienced craftspeople helping other practices define how they should move forward. Emily Kidson who makes bold, colourful jewellery at her Cockpit Arts studio perfectly sums up the community spirit with, “It has felt like being part of a creative family, somewhere supportive where we are all going though similar stages and striving to improve.”
Running a creative enterprise in isolation is hard work. It’s great to see how the connections and collaborations forged on the LCN programme allow makers to broaden their horizons and flourish. Combined with the support they get in the one-to-one coaching sessions with the Cockpit Arts team, craftspeople gain a renewed sense of confidence and excitement for what they do as a result of the programme. As jeweller Ellen Monaghan says, “The issues I have are often the same that a lot of others are having, and that realisation goes a long way to boosting confidence and not feeling downhearted when the going gets tough!”
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Find out more information about LCN
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Top – Jasmine Carey in her Cockpit Arts studio, photo by Jamie Trounce; middle – Olivia Holland in her Cockpit Arts studio, photo by Jamie Trounce; bottom – Lemon Quartz Textured Spun Curl ring by Ellen Monaghan, photo by Joe Warren.