Students get artistic over mental health

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A YORKSHIRE charity that supports people with mental health problems is using art as an aid to recovery.

Inkwell is part of Leeds Mind, and encourages people to express themselves through painting or drawing as a way of improving mental well-being.

Amanda Burton, who was previously treated by Inkwell, now volunteers there and said she watches people “coming out of themselves” through the use of art.

She said: “Being encouraged to paint re-ignited my love of art and definitely helped my recovery.”

Students from Leeds Metropolitan University are holding a silent art auction to help raise money for the scheme and artists from across the region have donated artwork, including some treated by Inkwell.

The type of art up for auction ranges from body painting to digital collages.

Leeds student Eleanor Docx is helping to organise the event and is also donating art to the auction. She said: “All the artists I have spoken to about the auction have commented on how exciting they think the creative methods Inkwell use to assist mental health problems are”.

Eleanor and her fellow students hope to raise £100.

Inkwell development worker Mark Cruse said he was delighted that the auction was taking place and added that the initiative was a good way of getting “Inkwell art out there.”

Mr Cruse said he hopes the auction also improve mental health awareness.

He said he wants the Inkwell centre to be a “hub for local people and people with mental health issues”.

The silent art auction will be at 7pm on March 9 at the Wellington Pub on Wellington Street, Leeds where 25 works of art will be for sale.

Anyone who would like to donate a work of art to the auction is asked to contact Leeds Mind on 0113 305 5800.