Monday, 16 November 2015

Abandoning Art in 5 easy steps with You Can Folk It

We hear everywhere don't we that our lives are getting busier, more stressful and that we are forgetting how to slow down and enjoy the moment. In a world where we hear so much bad news, and where many are so quick to criticise others; positive images, news and stories are treasured, shared and enjoyed so much more. A while ago we shared this video from another Facebook page and it brightened our day and judging by the shares it received it brightened many others too. 

Seeing this video made us think.  For some, it may be dismissed as a silly, simple act but it has such a powerful effect. As we watched it again, we realised that it is something we would like to aspire to. Many of us are familiar with yarn bombing, where people will cover objects in crochet or knitting to spread a little cheer. The fun doesn't stop at wool though! Some of you may have heard of a movement called "Art Abandonment" - where artists all over the world create pieces of art for the purpose of leaving them in public places for others to find. From sketches to jewellery and sculpture, artists are making others smile through their kind gifts that are often accompanied by kind sentiments and words of encouragement.  

When we heard about it we immediately thought it was a great idea! As Folkers, we love creating but we may not always have a reason to create or a recipient for our projects. To create small items and leave them for others to find, not knowing who that may be, sounds like the perfect way to create a little happiness in ourselves and others. If you would like to get involved in this idea, we have created  some resources and a little how to for you. 

1. Get out your Folk It kits and start creating. Sometimes when we create for others, we put pressure on ourselves to be perfect. We think about what they would like or restrict ourselves to colour schemes to suit tastes or events like weddings.  The beauty of creating for the purpose of abandoning it is that you, the painter, can remain anonymous! Try ideas you have been thinking of, play with new techniques, the world is your oyster! 

2. Paint on anything you like; paper, jewellery, hanging hearts, whatever you wish. Mix it with sketching, stamping or any other technique that takes your fancy to create something beautiful. (This is also a great way to pass on the projects we create while we are practicing Folk Art painting).  

3. Select your location. According to Michael deMeng, founder of the Art Abandonment project some places are better than others. Most popular places for art abandoners are: cafes, bars, out in nature (weather permitting and of course, the project should not pose a threat to wildlife), hospitals and waiting rooms.  You can be as creative as you like and many artists leave them on windscreens, in lifts and on public transport to name a few.

4. Add a note for the recipient. This of course is optional but the exciting part of abandonment for many is to receive responses from the person who has found your piece of art.  We have set up an email address that is included on the note we have created (though of course you can always create your own personal note!) We created this email so that for you the abandoner, it is anonymous and we will be able to share the responses on our Facebook page for everyone to enjoy. 


5. Take a picture - if you want to share the project your are abandoning, feel free to take a picture and share it with us. We always love to see Folkers' projects and would love to hear where you are leaving it to be found. 

So there you have it, it really is that simple. We don't know about you but we are feeling excited at the thought that we will be leaving a little bit of art out and about in the future, not knowing who will find it and hearing about how they did stumble upon it. 

Just like the video, we hope that this will create a few more smiles around the world. It's always nice to create with a purpose and what better purpose than to leave a gift and make someone's day a little bit better! 

If you wish to become an abandoner, we have created the note and email to help but do not feel that you HAVE to use them. Feel free to create your own or choose not to leave a note/method of contact at all. The choice is yours.

If you wish to learn more about the original Art Abandonment project, you can read about it here



  1. I love the idea of this. At the moment the news is awful, so to give some one a smile would be wonderful. x

    1. Isn't it a lovely idea. The Art Abandonment page has lots of lovely heartwarming stories of how little surprises have found their way to their new owners and how they have brightened up their day x

  2. What a fantastic idea. Definitely be doing it here in sunny South Shields. I may even make a little box of goodies as ISO lots of crafts. Great inspiration xxx

    1. A great idea riggiesue! It feels a little mischievous doesn't it :) Let us know how you get on x


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