As part of ‘Open Mind Fest'
Open Mind Fest is a youth-curated strand of SMHAF based in Paisley. The festival explores mental health through everything from music, film and art, to theatre, poetry, and journalism.
For ages up to 25.
Amid the hectic world of social media and the unrealistic expectations that it imposes on our brain, sometimes the best way to rationalise it is through a time-honoured practice. When things begin to get insurmountable, this is a tactic that’s employed by Paisley born poet and journalist Robert Blair. Buoyed with a hectic schedule that sees his work commissioned by outlets all over the word Including The Big Issue, Vice, Highsnobiety, Little White Lies and Uproxx among many others, it’s a ritual that Robert sees as hugely beneficial to preventing his diagnoses of anxiety and OCD from becoming unmanageable.
In the tradition of the long lineage of self-analytical writers that went before us, this workshop will examine poetry’s power to transfigure the turbulence of our inner monologues into beautiful imagery and more digestible stanzas.
Complete with personal exemplars and a look at the historical context behind writing about mental health, the workshop will aim to empower attendees to see their mental health as less of a deterrent to creativity but a powerful tool that teaches us that we’re not alone. Based on the principles of relatability and candidness, the event will open the aspirational youths up to creativity as catharsis and teach them how to channel the malicious into the moving through the mediums of poetry and spoken word.