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Belfast art teacher helping to inject artistic flair into children's lives during pandemic

Sinead Campbell is bringing art into people's lives during lockdown

A BELFAST art teacher is helping to inject some artistic flair into the lives of children across the world during the coronavirus pandemic.

With schools closed, Sinead Campbell is bringing the medium to the masses during the Covid-19 lockdown by helping others to unleash their inner artist from the comfort of their home.

From her art and design studio on Annadale Avenue, the mother-of-two is giving classes online to children and young people missing out on their school art lessons.

READ MORE: Shane McNaughton: What I've learned from lockdown

Ms Campbell also brings the current curriculum into her classes with literacy and numeracy embedded in the art work.

Among the recent topics for drawing and painting is the current lockdown, with one lesson focusing on how our homes are a safe place during the crisis.

Ms Campbell launched the Art and Design Factory more than a year ago, drawing on her experience as a teacher to bring art into others lives.

One of the students in Ms Campbell's zoom classes

"I spent 20 years as a teacher, but wanted to concentrate on my own business," she said.

"I started doing Saturday art classes about a-year-and-a-half ago, at times some of my classes had 300 on Zoom with people from Budapest, America, Italy and France - since then things have just soared.

"I'm a teacher so I embed the curriculum into my classes, from numeracy to literacy, I filter that into all my classes.

"And parents have seen that, they've commented about how I am teaching these things as well as life skills in my classes - the feedback has been phenomenal."

Since lockdown, the demand for online art classes has increased, with many parents keen to see their children enjoy some relaxing art time.

A piece of artwork created by a student in Ms Campbell's class

"I think parents have really appreciated having that time when their children are being occupied, but are working away as well as enjoying themselves," she said.

"It give parents a bit of time out.

"Those taking part are encouraged to use their imagination and flair - the standard of work has been unbelievable, I have been so impressed.

"It's a very surreal experience though as all the children are on mute, which is something teachers could never imagine happening in a class.

"I have done things about lockdown, one of the pieces was called 'home sweet home' and I explained to those involved about how lucky we are to have a home, it is our safe place, especially at this time.

"We've also looked at birds and nature and how we should we be grateful for nature around us. I also try to incorporate a lot of history of art as well.

"I try to keep materials basic too, my first class, all everyone needed was a cotton bud.

"I also do paint and drink parties for adults, I've been doing online birthday parties and a graduation in Kentucky today, it's lovely to be a art of it all."

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