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Are you an artist based the Isle of Wight? We’ve been really excited to hear about the new IW Creative Network, a unique programme designed to help creatives on the Isle of Wight develop their practice. We had a chat with project manager Georgia Newman to find out more.

Can you explain a bit about the IW Creative Network?

Over the past two years I have been gathering information from Isle of Wight Artists and Creatives to find out what they need in order to help sustain their creative practice, and to find out how best to provide a Creative Development Programme to support those living on the IW working in the Arts and Creative Industries.

Through Arts Council England and IW Council funding, the IW Creative Network has been set up to support Artists and Creatives on the IW through business support, networking, resources and profiling. A bespoke Development Programme is available in 2022 for individuals joining the Network. It aims nurture and inspire, allowing Creatives to thrive and become more sustainable.

What can you get from it?

The Development Programme includes creative Zoom sessions and special opportunities to help you develop your practice.

Networking events at cultural venues on the IW will take place throughout the year, as well as away days and site visits to other creative networks and studio spaces in Southampton and Portsmouth, with free ferry travel provided by Wightlink and Red Funnel. When joining the Network, members will be able to apply for the following special opportunities to help develop their practice:

1-2-1 Creative Business Mentoring sessions
1-2-1 Creative Portfolio Advice
Photo Shoots of your Practice

All members will also be eligible to apply for a bursary grant of £750 to help develop their creative practice.

A website will fully launch later in the summer, profiling individual Creatives and Artists joining the Network. This creative directory will also include profiles of exhibition spaces, studios and co-working spaces, cultural venues and creative facilities on the IW. It will be your one-stop, creative shop featuring news and opportunities, as well as a resource area and an extra members-only area with all of the recorded creative Zoom sessions – so members can access them at any time.

How do you sign up/get involved?

Just visit the website here and sign up by Wednesday 16th March 12pm noon.

You will need to first create an account and pay £30 for the year towards the membership. You’ll be asked to fill out a short membership form once you’ve paid and then we’ll be in touch to go through the next steps!

Whatever stage you’re at, there will be something for you to help develop your talent, grow your creative business and refine your artistic voice!

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