Leyburn student uses artistic skills to improve Darlington Memorial Hospital environment

L-R, Darlington College student Katie Dinsdale, tutor Donna Slyfield, staff nurse Jane Parr, sister Liddy Shinu, Darlington College bbusiness development advisor Ross Lowcock and matron Barbara Russell.

A Leyburn student has used her artistic flair to help ease the stresses and strains of hospital life.

A display of landscapes now graces the walls of Darlington Memorial Hospital in a collaboration between Darlington College and the NHS.

Btec Level 3 fine art students were set the challenge of producing work that captured the essence and emotions of nurturing, calm, peace and harmony for their first year painting assignment.

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Working in a variety of media on A1-sized canvases, students produced an array of stunning artwork in smaller print form, ranging from waterfalls to cliffs and poppy fields, to brighten the hospital walls and improve the environment for countless patients, visitors and staff.

Student Katie Dinsdale, 17, of Leyburn, produced two pieces, a tactile waterfall using thick acrylic and a resplendent field of poppies.

She said: “I chose Harmby Waterfall in Wensleydale as it is a place I always escape to when I feel the need. I thought about the composition and the texture of fast flowing water and used a palette knife to apply the thick paint to the canvas so you can actually feel the water gushing over the falls.

“I was studying a course at another college but it didn’t really suit me. I switched to Darlington College and the course has been incredible in opening my mind to opportunities I had not considered before.”

Darlington College tutor Donna Slyfield had high praise for the students’ work. “There is nothing better and more motivational than working to a professional brief with real clients and deadlines.

“Students really rose to the challenge putting a lot of thought into how their work would impact on the patients and visitors in the hospital. In a relatively short period of time they produced some incredible artwork which people have already offered to buy.”

Hospital communications manager Gillian Curry said: “When people come into hospital it can be a stressful time and improving the environment can have such a positive impact.

“We are absolutely delighted with the artwork which showcases the talents of students at Darlington College, who have clearly put a great deal of thought and time into their final designs.”