Alison’s Creative Meet Up!


CM Artist Alison, based in Warwickshire has been delivering art sessions to The Ashton Care Home in Hinkley and Aldersgate Retirement Flats in Nuneaton for over two years.

Since delivering sessions there, Alison encouraged The Ashton residents Dot, aged 97 and Cedric who has MS, to get back into their creative practice. Staff and residents have been amazed at the beauty of the work that they are now producing.  

Alison has also been blown away by the work of 96 year old Cecily, a resident at Aldersgate Retirement Flats. Cecily had a creative history and has been painting since the 1930s. She now produces stunning watercolour landscape paintings in Alison’s art sessions.

Alison and Janice, the Activity Coordinator at The Ashton decided it would be a lovely idea to organise a get-together with the residents from both settings. This would give them the opportunity to meet and share their passion for art while admiring each others work. So, on the 17th October, Alison organised a mini exhibition of Dot and Cedric’s work at The Ashton. She brought Cecily over from Nuneaton to enjoy a spot of lunch with fellow artists whilst viewing their work.

Left to right: Cecily, Alison, Dot & Cedric

“It was wonderful to listen to them share stories, and admire each others work. After lunch we visited Dot & Cedric’s bedrooms to enjoy some more of their artworks. It made for a lovely social occasion they shared ideas and techniques whilst we all chatted about our love for art!” – Alison.

Afterwards Dot said “I like meeting new people, especially people who share interests, so it was great to chat about our artwork.”

Cecily commented; “I thoroughly enjoyed the meet up. Dot and Cedric were so enthusiastic. I would be lovely to go and meet them again to discuss our latest paintings.”

Dot and Cecily
Dots Painting
Cecily’s Painting

Janice, the Activity Coordinator from The Ashton said: “After the meet up, the residents said how fabulous it was! It was a real clicking of minds and wonderful that Dot and Cedric got to meet others with the same interests and passions.”

The residents are all keen to meet up again, and have formed a lovely friendship, so Alison is looking to arrange another get together soon so that they can admire each other’s latest masterpieces.

Create your Christmas Card Competition!

christmas card

This year we’ve partnered with our lovely friends at MindForYou to host a #createyourchristmascard competition! This competition is specifically for anybody living with dementia to enter and get creative with a festive card design! 

Closing date for entries is Wednesday 27th November with the winning designs announced on SUNDAY 1ST DECEMBER. We are very excited to announce we have a celebrity judge to decide the winners of the competition…. none other than THE Tony Christie!

christmas card

The lucky winner will experience a MindforYou holiday at NO COST, in-house art therapy sessions with Creative Minds, along with their Christmas Card design being printed and sent out to them and their family, as well as to all MindforYou guests! The winning designs will also be made available for anyone to purchase online, with all proceeds going to Creative Minds and MindforYou, allowing us both to benefit more people living with dementia!

Go on, get creative, YULE LOVE IT! Remember to tag us in your designs on social media (@creativemindsan) and Mind for You (@MindForYou1) and don’t forget to use the hashtag #createyourchristmascard in your posts.

Competition rules:

  • All designs must be done on A5 paper or larger
  • You can use ANY medium to create your design
  • Applicants must take a photo of their artwork and either send it to MindforYou, 5 The Willows, Burton on the Wolds, Loughborough, LE12 5AP or via email to
  • Please either scribble on the back of the photo or in your email a short answer to ‘Why you have you chosen to enter the competition?’ along with your name and age
  • If you are announced as one of the 12 short-listed, we will be in touch to ask for a small blurb about yourself to go along with your design for judging

Right click on our flyer consent forms below and ‘Save image as…’ to download them for printing. Or request a PDF from

christmas card
christmas card

Exciting new partnerships for Creative Minds in 2019!


Throughout the year we’ve formed some exciting new partnerships with a number of organisations that are passionate about the benefits that creativity brings to people’s wellbeing. These have opened up some great opportunities for our artists to expand their businesses into new fields and reach out and touch the lives of others.

Colostomy UK

Since the beginning of this year, we’ve been working closely with Colostomy UK, delivering therapeutic art sessions to Stoma Support Groups across the country as part of their “active ostomates” programme – designed to empower people with a stoma to participate in activities to increase both physical and mental wellbeing.

These sessions have been hugely popular – some with as many as 35 participants attending! These always make for a wonderful social occasion, and we’ve had some great feedback from attendees on how much they’ve enjoyed it, and how therapeutic the sessions are. Our artists have thoroughly enjoyed delivering sessions at the Stoma Support Groups too.

Giovanni, the Fundraising & Development Manager with Karen U, CM Artist

CM Artist David delivered a session in Salisbury and said; “Everyone loved working with watercolours – it was a lovely atmosphere with lots of fun and banter.”

Colostomy UK Salisbury group

CM Artist Rhiannon delivered a session in Sheppy and she said; “It was a pleasure working with the Stoma Support Group in Sheppy. They astounded me with their positivity and creativity. They really encouraged each other and gave great feedback on each other’s work. Some fabulous art was created!”


To find out more about Colostomy UK, visit:


Back in the summer, we formed a partnership with MindForYou, a wonderful company who organise holidays for folks living with dementia to enjoy with their nearest and dearest. Their holidays span across England, Scotland and Wales.

CM Artist Tracy ran a session in Hathersage, Derbyshire. Holiday goers used soft pastels and inktense pencils to draw views of the beautiful Derbyshire countryside.


CM Artist Liz ran a lovely session near Honiton in Devon. The sun shone into the room as holiday goers had a great time creating bold sunflower canvases.


Throughout the summer we delivered sessions at holidays across the country, with groups from anywhere from 15-35 participants, and our artists will be delivering sessions at many future holidays to come!

To find out more about Mindforyou, visit:

Chatty Art Cafe

The Chatty Café Scheme is a brilliant initiative, founded by Alex Hoskyns, in which cafes can join the scheme and allocate a table or two within the establishment to be a ‘chatter and natter’ table to encourage people in the community to talk to one another reducing loneliness and isolation.

The scheme has really off and in just two years, there are now over 1000 cafes across the UK and globally, in the US, Canada, Gibraltar, Malta, Australia and more!

CM Artists Caroline and Judy set up their own Chatty Art Café at Greengages Coffee Shop in Salisbury earlier in the year. Since then, Creative Minds founder James got in touch with the founders of the Chatty Café Scheme and they loved the idea of forming a partnership to run Chatty Art Cafés as part of the initiative. This has opened up another exciting avenue for CM Artists to pursue and we’re looking forward to seeing Chatty Art Cafes popping up across the country in the coming months.


In the meantime, CM Artists Caroline and Judy’s Chatty Art Café in Salisbury is continuing to grow from strength to strength. They have a solid group of regular attendees and some wonderful new friendships have formed. It’s lovely to hear that some of the regulars are already making Christmas plans together!

To find out more about the Chatty Cafe Scheme, visit:

A Day in the Life of Creative Minds Artist: Sarah Jane

creative minds artist
Sarah Jane on an Art Trip she’s organised for one of her care home clients

How long have you been a Creative Minds Artist?

I joined in February 2016, so approaching 4 years.

Tell us what you’ve been up to today.

Today has been really varied: this morning I delivered a session for the lovely MindforYou supported holidays (for people living with dementia and their relatives/carers), in Corfe Castle, East Dorset.

This afternoon I was at one of my regular homes near Dorchester, then did my third session of the day with two young chaps, in a local, supported living home.

In their art session they choose the music too, which can vary from Johnny Cash to Pink Floyd! Sometimes we theme it to the session: we painted peacocks, so the music was The Byrds!

creative minds artist
Sarah delivering her Mindforyou session
creative minds artist

What would a typical week look like to you?

I deliver 6 or 7 sessions a week, normally leaving the house about 9.45am – this gives me time to walk our dog by the river (invaluable contemplation time!).

I tend to stay local or travel West, towards Lyme Regis, on a Tuesday, then East (Dorchester, Weymouth) on Wednesdays and Thursdays. But there really isn’t a typical week, each one is different, which I love! I probably spend about half a day a week on admin – planning sessions, invoicing, sourcing supplies etc.

Organising my sessions like this also gives me at least one day a week to work in my studio on my own practice.

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Artwork created by participants in her sessions
creative minds artist

Tell us a little about your own personal creative practice as an artist.

I’m a mixed media artist and just taken part in our local, Bridport, Open Studios event, with a friend. My conservatory is transformed into a gallery space and the public can peek inside my garden studio! We had over 120 visitors and I sold quite a few pieces of work including mixed media, printmaking and jewellery.

My abstract work is playful and humorous, bold and experimental. Bright colours, industrial lines and texture are at the core of my sculptural and mixed media work. The nearby Jurassic coastline heavily influences my work.

What first attracted you to the franchise opportunity?

The flexibility and being able to use art in a fun, therapeutic way. Being able to manage my own diary – I’ve been self-employed for years now and enjoy the autonomy, but relish the fantastic support and community you gain as a Creative Minds Artist.

What do you like most about being a Creative Minds Artist?

The moment when folks smile at seeing their finished work! All the lovely feedback, that it’s “relaxing”, “takes me out of myself”, “I didn’t realize I could paint!” It really can change people in a positive way. I often say, even if I won the lottery, I’d still want to deliver the art sessions!

creative minds artist
The Art Gallery at Somerleigh Court Nursing Home in Dorchester

Read ‘A Day in the Life of Creative Minds Artist: Laura Novak’ here: