A colour photograph of three people sat around a display of green stones with pencils. The three people are sat cross legged and the camera has taken the photograph from the top looking birds eyes view down to the three people.

How can we learn to practice care for the planet, for all ages? Across June and July, Tim Pugh and Di Mcghee are working with over 150 schoolchildren from across the West Coast to make a new body of work about reflecting on pollution and the responsibility we all have to exercise care for our environment, on both local and planetary levels.

The workshops will involve combing the region’s beaches, streets and hills for discarded materials. The schoolchildren will then work these into sculptures, which they will then photograph using both digital and analogue cameras. The final works will be exhibited as part of Chapter Two of West Coast Photo Festival, launching in October.

Lead by Cumbria-based environmental artists Tim Pugh & Di McGhee, the project seeks to engage local young people to reflect on the impact of climate change and pollution on their local area, while exploring the coastal landscape and learning new skills in both analogue and digital photography.

In recent years the state of the planet has grown increasingly critical, but younger generations have proven to be collectively capable of caring for the environment in a way that older generations  have failed to do. From Greta Thunberg’s school strikes to a reluctance to engage in wasteful practices, young people are channeling a reinvigorated sense of responsibility.

If your school is interested in taking part in the festival’s Autumn education programme, please email cameron@signalfilmandmedia.co.uk

About Di McGhee

Di McGhee is a visual artist with a background in public art and socially engaged projects. Her site-specific installations respond to the immediate surroundings, using found materials. Her work presents environmental themes and issues such as climate change, pollution, erosion and adaptation. She is an established art educator and workshop facilitator, and has worked extensively on the theme of coastal environments. Her work has been exhibited internationally. Work with Di to create your own environmental piece, responding to the shores of the West Coast. Di will demonstrate the creative journey from research and creating to photographing your work for exhibition. Photography is an important part of Di’s practice and essential way of recording temporary and ephemeral works.

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About Tim Pugh

Tim Pugh is an environmental artist based in Wales with over 30 years of experience in delivering environmental art workshops for schools and community groups, with people of all ages and abilities. He often works with found materials, scavenged from the UK’s beaches, or draws directly onto trees, boulders and limestone surfaces using natural materials. His work is often staged outside and therefore ephemeral — part of Tim’s practice is to document his work, so that it can outlast its short tenure exposed to the elements.

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