Workshops + Participatory Projects
These are some of the participatory projects and independent workshops that RS has designed and delivered. For currently available projects or workshops, please check News or the Diary.
THE WORLD BEYOND (2023): for Soutar Festival of Words (Culture Perth & Kinross), appointed to design and deliver a poetry workshop (in English and Scots) drawing from the life and work of William Soutar.
FLIPPING THE SCRIPT (2023): an independent workshop at Off the Rails Arthouse in Fife, looking at overlapping concepts and techniques between poetry and performance/playwriting.
CREATIVE ALCHEMY (2022 - ): a recurring series of independent workshops online, exploring the connections between creative practice, alchemy, natural cycles and the Wheel of the Year.
SEED POEMS (2022): for Book Week Scotland in partnership with Perthshire Seed Library and Culture Perth & Kinross at Breadalbane Community Library (Aberfeldy) - appointed to design and deliver this workshop using forms of concrete poetry to explore themes of seeds, sustainability, natural cycles and growth.
BYRE WRITERS / NORTH EAST FIFE LIFE (2022): appointed to design and deliver a series of funded workshops for participants to write dramatic monologues, including dramaturgical guidance for performance and filming. Screening at The Byre Theatre, St Andrews.
CHRONICLES OF ANGUS (2022): with Historic Environment Scotland, appointed to design and deliver a series of community creative/writing workshops, alongside visual artists towards the creation of a final publication and display. Referencing local history and environment, individuals' reflections and experiences.
CIRCLES, CYCLES, CURRENCY & BREATH / Seeds of Change (2021): for COP26, appointed by Culture Perth & Kinross to design and deliver this workshop at AK Bell Library (Perth), exploring poetry and voice as agents for change; seeds and sustainability, individual and collective action.
SHAPE/SHIFT (2021): for COP26, with the Centre for Energy Ethics (University of St Andrews) - a workshop at the Byre Theatre (St Andrews). Concrete poetry in action, exploring concepts and techniques of visual poetry; poems as activating objects for empowerment and change.
PISTON, PEN & PRESS (2021): with University of Strathclyde and Historic Environment Scotland / Stanley Mills. Working with local Primary groups to explore the history of Stanley Mills and local poets of the Victorian era who wrote about the Mills; the traditions of having a village poet and a Literary Society. Students wrote their own poems about the industrial era, and their own present day experiences; created their own Literary Society, and a publication of their work was produced.
NEW DECLARATIONS (2020-21): with Hospitalfield and Arbroath 2020+1 Festival. Lead artist to devise a creative writing engagement project for young people, responding to the 700th anniversary of the Declaration of Arbroath in 2020; considering issues of freedom in a contemporary context. Authors contributed individual short pieces of writing following a series of online workshops with RS. The full collaborative text was edited and compiled by RS, honouring individual voices while weaving them together to a cohesive whole, echoing the form of the original 1320 Declaration.
POETRY APOTHECARY (2016-20): a series of independent public workshops combining poetry/creative writing with natural perfumery using essential oils. Exploring ideas of holistic creative practice alongside alchemy, aromatherapy, language-as-alchemy, scent and sustainability. Workshops took place at Falkland Centre for Stewardship, The Ecology Centre (Kinghorn, Fife), Centre for Contemporary Arts (Glasgow), The Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Centre (Edinburgh), Wall Projects (Montrose), Beckside Books (Penrith, with Wild Women Press).
PLAYWRIGHTS' STUDIO SCOTLAND (2019): public playwriting workshops with PSS at Perth theatre; and Outwith Festival, Dunfermline.
BYRE YOUTH & COMMUNITY ARTS (2019): working with the Byre Young Company to devise and write their own new play.
CARE: MAKING FOR GOOD (2019): with Fife Contemporary and Fife Carers, working with a group of adult carers using the Poetry Apothecary format (see above). Exploring essential oils and the power of scent to affect wellbeing; the role of language in naming and carrying messages; designing and producing new work.
WRITING TIME (2019): an independent workshop exploring links between poetry/creative writing and archaeological concepts, processes and techniques. At Falkland Centre for Stewardship, including a visit to the active dig at East Lomond Hillfort. Producing new written and visual work, and devising new techniques.
CREATIVE CARTOGRAPHIES (2018-19): an independent workshop exploring literary maps and narrative worlds, demonstrating techniques of cartography and deep-mapping through creative writing. Held for public participants at Off the Rails Arthouse, Fife; and at Edge Hill University for MA Creative Writing students.
CLAY AND THE TAY (2017): with University of Dundee and a team of writers and artists to deliver sessions with Dundee primary groups, exploring the social and natural history of the Tay. Working with local clay to model visual work alongside poetry-writing.
JOURNEYS INTO THE LITERARY LANDSCAPE (2016-20): with Falkland Centre for Stewardship, session leader then project coordinator for a recurring programme of creative / writing workshops funded by YouthLink Scotland. Working with teenagers and young people in Fife, exploring outdoor environments and making creative visual and written work in response, working with a range of artists and art forms.
THE WINDOWS PROJECT (2008-14): trained in the design, delivery and coordination of creative workshops and projects through the Writers’ Attachment Scheme. Delivered numerous sessions and projects working with The Windows Project; with Primary and Secondary mainstream and specialist schools; vulnerable adults and young people in community and public venues throughout Liverpool and the NW of England.