Vicky Carver, 51, from Clifton, has worked in all sorts of different roles over the years - from a poolside attendant to an exam invigilator, but it’s her love of art and crafts that enticed her back to College, in pursuit of launching her own arts and crafts business.
It’s not been easy for Vicky, who suffers with severe osteoarthritis and has been a wheelchair user for the past five years, but she says that College pushes her to get out and about and helps to keep her going.
With a Level 3 Fashion and Textiles qualification already under her belt, Vicky progressed to the Foundation Degree Fine Art course and is now set to complete the Art and Design Top-up Degree.
Vicky has joined creative students from across the College in their end of year Creative Shows, which this year have gone virtual! She said:
“I’m so pleased the exhibition can go ahead and I’m really excited to see everyone’s finished pieces. The virtual show means that a lot more people will see our work which is very exciting, but at the same time it’s quite scary; I’m putting my work out there for all to see and I just hope that they like it!”
For Vicky’s project, she created an intricate colony of ants using glass beads and jewellery wire. She was inspired by our environment and the effects consumer lifestyles are having on our ecosystems. She said: “I chose ants because small creatures like insects can often be forgotten when we think about extinction and the effects on habitats and woodland. The faceted beads give an insect-eye-view of the world around us.”
The restrictions during lockdown have meant that students have had to think outside the box for this year’s Creative Shows.
Vicky commented: “The situation has been a real learning curve. I’ve had to think about the space that I have available to me at home to make and display my artwork, as well as the materials I could get hold of. A real positive is the computer skills I’ve improved on!
I couldn’t have done it without the help and encouragement of my family and lecturers, who are all so supportive.— Vicky
“My eldest son, Adam, is my carer and helps get me to and from College, and my daughter Ruth helped me to display my designs in the garden at home and took the photographs for the show.
“I’m in a class WhatsApp group and it’s been interesting hearing about what everyone’s come up with during lockdown, and I’ve been really looking forward to seeing all the final pieces online.”