Our AnimATE pilot project supported by The Ragdoll Foundation and Edinburgh’s Culture Fund is set to go ahead this October with partner venues across the West of Edinburgh delivering hands on animation and cookery workshops for their communities between the 18th and 20th October.
In April 2019, as part of the Puppet Animation Festival programme, Puppet Animation Scotland presented Estudio El Palmeral’s CUCINEMA workshop. The workshop is a family-orientated way to learn about the basics of animation. After its success, and with the blessing from the company, we began exploring ways to replicate the model with the aim of creating a version to present in Edinburgh – and eventually – across venues in Scotland.
Through the project we are hoping to provide families and young people with the opportunity to develop new skills and a better understanding of the wellbeing benefits of getting creative – using our animation and cooking sessions as fun, practical, hands on experiences.
To deliver our pilot sessions we’re delighted to be working with WHALE Arts, Corstorphine Community Centre and, with the support of Edinburgh Libraries and Edinburgh Council, the Clovenstone Community Centre as spaces with established community connections in the West of the city.
We are working with freelance animator Dominika Jackowska who has a specialism in mixed-media, stop-motion animation to design the animation elements of the session alongside workshop facilitator Kirsty from social enterprise Edinburgh Food Social who has come up with our recipe kits and cooking workshop. The sessions have been designed through conversations with WHALE, Corstorphine and Clovenstone staff as well as visits to the spaces to ensure that the sessions are planned to suit individual community needs and patterns of work at the centres – this has been an invaluable part of the process of delivering these initial pilot sessions.
Elly White – Cucinema Workshop- Puppet Animation Festival 2019
All of our partner organisations currently support communities through established food share pick up points, offering community fridges and their own cooking or meal programmes. At Corstorphine Community Centre our workshop will take place during the centre’s Nourish to Flourish programme. The cooking element of the AnimATE project was intended to help combat holiday hunger by offering families a chance to share in cooking and eating together. The social element of the sessions and the opportunity for a cooked meal, delivered safely, is more important than ever given the pandemic’s impact on isolation and food poverty over the last year.
Following each session AnimATE will provide recipe kits designed by Edinburgh Food Social with ingredients and instructions that can be picked up from each of the centres to allow people to try the recipe again at home, or for those who didn’t have a chance to join in to try it for the first time.
At Edinburgh Food Social we aim to enhance lives, improve health and build confidence by giving people the skills and resources to cook delicious and nutritious meals for themselves and their families – the AnimATE project offers a fun way to get creative with food and we can’t wait to be part of it.
Kirsty, Edinburgh Food Social
As well as the ‘make at home’ recipe kits, our animator Dominka will be putting together craft materials and animation tips for getting started making characters and animating at home. At our Clovenstone session Wester Hailes Library staff are putting together a display of their books about animation for the centre – so that families who have enjoyed the sessions can know where to find out more about animating at home.
We’re looking forward to delivering these first three pilot sessions of AnimATE – and hope that the learning from this can create a successful workshop format that we can take further afield to venues around Scotland.