Making Work With Young People As Artists and Collaborators

  • Kindness and empathy are the basis of everything.
  • Don’t be afraid to be the leader when you need to be – sometimes the security that this gives is just what is needed.
  • Play from people’s strengths. Use this to build confidence and security. This will be the starting point to make things that are really interesting.
  • Make sure all your starting points are accessible for everyone. This can be hard work but it’s work that you have to do to make the previous point possible.
  • Don’t dwell on failure – note what has happened, what can be learnt from what has happened, then move on. Support people to learn that failure is a crucial part of any creative process. That failure is your friend and not your enemy.
  • Working with young people is a two-way process – you should learn as much from them as they learn from you.
  • Finding safe ways to push people outside their comfort zone is essential because those are the places where the best work will be made.
  • Be consistent and structured. Be fair. When things are challenging or difficult young people will value this more than anything else that you do.
  • Believe in the creative ability of the young people you are working with. They all have the ability to create astonishing and beautiful things.
  • Working with young people is a privilege and an education. Enjoy the opportunity whilst you have it.

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