Background information to some pieces of art featured in the 2023 calendar

Snow Art

The artist does a number of pictures in the snow then makes them into Christmas cards.  Despite her mental health not always being grand she still tries to help people to smile.


The artist is learning to paint watercolours, which is what she has used for this painting.  She feels a little lost each time her mental health has affected her and painting this picture reminds her, “I’m not lost.”

After she was made redundant the artist felt very down, a bit lost and she suffered with a bout of anxiety. Covid restrictions didn’t help and made her feel even more isolated being at home all day. “I’d always enjoyed art at school and plucked up the courage to attend a session in July at NTASII. I really enjoyed it, painting has given me my confidence back as well as my social skills.” She is finally around other people and has something to talk about to others who also enjoy being creative.

Butterflies – Collage and Paint

This piece of art was created by a service user for display in Hopewood Park Hospital in Sunderland.

Mountain Storm

Medium – Acrylic (on acrylic paper). Size – 35 x 25 cm

The artist would describe this piece of artwork as ‘semi-abstract’.  It was inspired by the often atmospheric landscapes of the Lake District. It depicts the endurance of a small cottage against the storm raging around it – a metaphor for the strength that can be found within an individual whilst turbulence threatens their stability.

There is a quote that the artist thinks sums this up. “I am not the storm, I am the one who’ll survive it.” (Broms The Poet, Feast)

Winds of Change

‘Winds of Change’ is the artist’s personal response to change, over the past years of COVID and harder times from a mental health perspective. In this acrylic painting she sees herself as the boat, navigating out of the storms and towards calmer waters and hope.

Fishquay North Shields

Acrylic painting on canvas 16”×12”.  

Landscape composition of North Shields Fishquay where the artist often walks and gets fish and chips and watches the boats coming in. 

By creating this piece of artwork the artist has benefitted in the following ways: development of skillsappreciation of art, thinking about the effect of time , expression of creativity, feeling of freedom, allowing materials and movement to happen.

River Flow

Acrylic painting on beechpanel 12”×12”.  

Layers of paint showing the history of the water as it flows through an industrial and  rural  landscape.


Watercolour on 300 gsm paper A4

This was a piece of work that was accepted for an exhibition called ‘New Beginings’
It was held this year at The Lady Waterford Hall in Ford village as part of the Lady Waterford prize.
The artist was inspired to paint this as she felt the theme was where her mental health journey was; everything felt new and uplifting.

The Lady Waterford Hall holds a special place in the artist’s heart. Her maternal family are all from the place in Waterford, Ireland. She spent all of her holidays there as a child playing on the estate where Louisa Waterford spent her married life.

Creating this piece of art filled the artist with immense pride.

Snowberries and Cabbage

Watercolour still life on 300 gsm paper.

This piece was painted whilst attending a Zoom workshop called Janies Watercolours from Chilli Studios.
The artist attended this workshop weekly online. Chilli Studios provides a safe environment for people to be creative whilst supporting their mental health.

The artist was drawn to the composition and colours of this image . She is fascinated by the organic forms, getting lost in the veins of the cabbage leaves.

Her art practice has helped her to grow mentally and improve artistically. “It has helped my confidence build and given me a sense of accomplishment and pride.”