wellbeing Blog Posts | The Open College of the Arts
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OCA wellbeing: Photography

I’d started up an Instagram account a while back, but I’d fallen into posting very sporadically, going months without and not making much of a contribution. So I decided to try out the whole ‘post an image a day’ and use some hashtags to get the message out that although we were in lockdown, we were still here.

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OCA wellbeing: Volunteering

When I drop shopping off some people like to have a distant chat, just general stuff about the weather and how they are coping, while others are very regimented and want their shopping leaving at the end of the drive and they come and collect, everyone is dealing with this pandemic in their own way and has to do what they feel is right, I completely respect that.

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OCA Wellbeing: A trip to the bibliotherapist

Imagine going to the doctor’s and coming out with a prescription – for a good book. It’s really not as daft as it may sound. And what’s more, the notion that our mental wellbeing can be improved by something other than pills is far from new.

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OCA wellbeing: Running

I realise I am very fortunate to be in my running group.  It has opened my eyes to all the virtual experiences that people can now engage with.  Lockdown has resulted in the creation of so many activities to connect people – virtual running competitions, online courses, online counselling – the list goes on.  Being removed from family and friends is difficult, but having a great group of people online has kept me going.  I can’t wait until we can run together again.

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OCA wellbeing: Gardening for mental health

Lockdown in mid-March prompted two responses. First was a recognition that getting outside for parts of the day without bumping into other humans would become a very valuable thing. Second, I had some new time, that used to be spent travelling and trolling the train companies about their poor service, and I could put this to good use by sorting out my embarrassing back garden.

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OCA wellbeing: What’s in your wellness toolkit?

It’s a challenging situation we find ourselves in, and I realised that all of my usual ‘wellness tools’ are unavailable to me owing to the restrictions in place, so it’s no wonder even little day to day issues feel more difficult.

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OCA creative challenges: Making poseable dolls

In this workshop we will be looking at making a very basic art doll with a completely soft body and sculpted clay face, but the skills that you will learn by doing this can be applied to more complex and ambitious projects.

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OCA creative challenges: Sewing & embroidery – the basics

Whatever reason you have for wanting to learn to sew or embroider, this workshop will take you through from basic stitches to embroidery techniques, including writing styles and decorative finesse. Below you will find a step by step slideshow and a downloadable pdf. Enjoy and share your creations with us using #WeAreOCA. 

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Student stories: Alistair McIntyre

OCA Student Alistair writes about how creating work helps his mental health and wellbeing.

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