We celebrate the hard work of NHS workers every Thursday evening at 8pm. Our road takes to the street to clap, ring bells, clang saucepan lids, play the drums and one neighbour even takes her cello outside to join in with a little music. It’s great to see that level of commitment to make our thanks felt and it’s great to get some social contact, even at a distance, with the neighbours. There’s another visible thank you quite close to home too, as a local sculptor has made an NHS angel sculpture and installed it in a park that faces onto a main route into Birmingham city centre. The sculpture of a winged medical worker has been unveiled in tribute to the NHS and social care ‘angels’ on the the coronavirus frontline.
Not all of us have the skills, expertise, materials or work space required to create an art work on this scale to thank key workers to their commitment, but it’s possible to create some wonderful things on a more modest scale. I’ve seen many great examples around our neighbourhood, mostly featuring rainbows and there have been some very creative ideas: rainbows created from wool, fabric, paints, crayons, mosaics and more. In fact, it’s become a key part of our daily exercise to spot the rainbows as we walk along.
If you want to create something to celebrate key workers or those in the NHS, you can find lots of help and resources online. A great place to start is to look for svg files on the internet. There are loads of designs to choose from and they are available at quite a low cost, so you can get quality artwork without breaking the bank. You can pick out hand lettered words or drawn images and create something unique and individual. There’s so much to choose from and the results can be very high quality.
Another great way to create a bespoke artwork is to create a collage using a selection of photos or images. One way to do it would be take photographs of people’s window displayed rainbow artwork as you do your daily exercise. Then when you get home you could collate it into a collection of images to sum up how your neighbourhood feels about the NHS. This could then be transformed into a physical artwork, maybe a canvas print for instance, which would make a lovely gift. Or you could submit the electronic image to a local community website or Facebook page so that it could be shared widely.
Maybe you’d like to create something a bit more tactile or large scale? Yarn bombing may be just the thing if you can knit or crochet. In East Kilbride a young crafter has been showing her appreciation by crochet-bombing Hairmyres Hospital with rainbows. It’s something that’s fairly easy to do (you can use up odds and ends of yarn) and you can put a smile on people’s faces as they pass by. plus you are letting the NHS staff know they are appreciated.