Creative Minds is a social enterprise and arts organisation founded in November 2012 by James Cropper and is based in Guildford, Surrey. For over 5 years our art sessions have had a huge impact on the lives of older adults, people with learning disabilities, adults in the community and children, enabling people of all ages and abilities to explore their creativity.
Our art sessions are delivered by our passionate community of artists across the country enabling the participants to explore their creativity and create wonderful artwork with the support and guidance of an experienced artist. Our nationwide community of artists currently visit over 210 venues delivering 350 art sessions to over 1500 participants a month. As a social enterprise we have 2 important social aims which are key to what we do…
Our social aims are:
To empower and enhance people’s lives through art and creativity. We want to empower the individual and improve their well-being.
To make art accessible to everyone. We want to encourage as many people as possible to give art and crafts a go.
We are continually striving to achieve our social aims ensuring that as many people as possible can benefit from our services and access art. Every artist who joins Creative Minds believes passionately about the arts for health and well being and is aligned with our social aims.
My art journey began 17 years ago…when I started taking various weekly classes with some amazing teachers.
After having home-schooled my two teenagers to GCSE level, I returned back to work a year ago. Being in the corporate world has made me increasingly aware that I wanted to be in a more caring role incorporating my love of art. I have enjoyed teaching and creating over the years, so when I found the Creative Minds website, I was so excited about the possibility of becoming part of this wonderful community.
Over the years I have given many art lessons and craft sessions and it has always amazed me seeing people’s faces light up when they realise they can create something beautiful…
Art is for everyone and Creative Minds reaches people in a wonderfully encouraging, engaging, caring way.
James has developed comprehensive training to equip the artist to go into homes, schools and communities with confidence. He has also thought of everything that we would need to consider about the business right through from the set up to the execution of the art sessions.
“As a child I loved to draw, paint and be messy, and not much has changed. I followed a traditional art education journey achieving a diploma, and then I pursued a love for creating characters as a Professional Make up artist for TV and film. After qualifying I worked on low budget projects around the country, developing my understanding for 3D design, mask making and sculpture.
What has always interested me as an artist is expression and process, interpreting ideas and emotions visually. I have always been drawn towards mixed media merging traditional techniques to create something with depth and texture. I love to be tactile and repurpose tools like painting a portrait using glue sticks or old credit cards.
Recently my inspiration has shifted after having my son. He made me realise how accessible art is – there are no rules or restrictions. Watching how much fun he has discovering new skills is hugely rewarding.
The training Creative Minds has given me has been so beneficial. I’m so happy to be a part of such a welcoming community of Artists, who share the same values. The shadowing session was fantastic. It really gave me a great insight into what being a part if Creative Minds is all about. I felt in my element and excited to get more involved.”
Our vibrant community is growing and we are always looking for artists who are supportive and compassionate to join us enabling people to explore their creativity.