Programme & action: ERASMUS+, Key Action 1: training course
Venue: Dresden, Germany
Dates: 2-10 July 2015
Participants: Veronika Charvátová
Please read the project info-pack
Hosting organisation: Jugend- & Kulturprojekt e.V.
Participating countries: Czech Republic, Estonia, Italy, Ireland, Greece, Hungary, Poland, Spain, Turkey, Great Britain
Since the end of June I had been looking for some summer projects on the EYCB website which I would like to participate in. Especially, I was eager on those projects in the Balkan countries and east Europe, which usually have some very interesting topics (e.g. Vision of My Europe in Macedonia), but for my fear of flying, I eventually decided to find some project close to our borders. As I like to draw and do creative stuff in my free time, and I am also interested in arts in general, the ArtExpress project in Dresden was an obvious choice for me. Moreover, my dad had visited this beautiful place a few weeks before me and he enthusiastically recommended it to me for a visit.
ArtExpress project took place between 2nd of July and 9th of July 2015 and its main topic was the use of visual arts in non-formal education. As I was going on this project as the only one participant from the Czech Republic, I was quite anxious of what I should expect. After my arrival from Brno to Dresden (which was so comfortable thanx to the yellow buses I took!:), I went to accommodate in our youth hostel, where I met the first participants of the project. I shared the same room with another three Estonian girls, one Spanish girl and one Greek girl, and owing to the Estonian prevalence I almost felt like being on an Estonian project rather than on the German one (yet I at least learnt some basic Estonian words!:). Except for the girls from the mentioned countries, there were other participants from all over Europe – Ireland, Hungary, Poland, Turkey, Great Britain – and also five volunteers from Germany, Poland, Bulgary, France and even Malaysia! First night we had a dinner together during which we could get to know each other more closely, and we also received some information from the organizators of the project about a schedule for the following days – e.g. times of dining, coffee breaks, and workshops, but also some tips for some interesting places in Dresden, certainly worth visiting. The next day we participated in the first workshop in which the professional lecturers initiated us into the mysteries of using animation and short animation films. During the workshops we ourselves could also tried out how and where to use animation, film and photography. The next days were then fulfilled by another workshops and ensuing practice, and later also by sequential introducing of the participating organizations of the project, including the hosting Jugend- & Kulturprojekt e.V. organization. In the second half of the project we slowly started creating the groups and planning our mutual big project – a short animation film, through which we could employ not only our creativity, but also our artistic, digital and technical skills. While some groups used plasticine for their work, the other decided for the use of nature materials and even for the stop motion method, based on using the movements of one’s own body. Since I liked the combination of more methods, I joined the group which opted for working with real objects, drawing, and collages. Collectively we created two short films – Smokking Kills and ARTventures through European Countries. The first film showed in a funny way the impacts of smoking, the second portrayed a pedestrian walking through the significant European metropolises. On the last day of the project we watched all the films together, and I must admit that each film was very different from the others and also very original – one animation film pointly took swipes at the multinational corporations, the next excellently parodied the trilogy of the Lord of The Rings, and another told a story abouth a girl addicted to modern technologies. And there was even a remake of Michael Jakson’s Beat It music video clip by one of our ArtExpress groups!:D At last, we were given from the organizators a great amount of materials for making animation, which would certainly be useful for us in our future work after the end of the project – e.g. guiding videos on how to make a short animation film, a databaze with countless sounds effect to put into our videos, or various examples of animation in practice. After the final dinner we went all together to celebrate our last night in a club owned by a very friendly Mexican guy where nice Latino-American music played, and where some of us celebrated till the early morning hours .:)
If I were to compare this project with the others I have taken part in so far, I think that this one has been especially well-done – whether it was due to the great work of the organizators, interesting workshops, the jointly created work, and easy-going young people; or the beautiful place of stay which I will certainly visit soon again – either for the next Jugend- & Kulturprojekt e.V. project, or at least for another pleasing visit.