Salmagundi Films is a not for profit participatory arts organisation based in East London.
We work across the community with all ages and abilities, with a focus on those at risk of exclusion, using film, stop-frame animation and digital arts as an empowering platform for creative expression.
We have used these as a therapeutic communication and life story tool - animating personal objects and photographs as triggers for narrative. We call this process 'Frames Of Mind'.
Animation is an accessible empowering and therapeutic process, where by moving objects incrementally and capturing frames on an App on an iPad, participants can literally animate their memories to life.
The impact and effectiveness of 'Frames Of Mind', was fully researched an evaluated by Housing 21 Research and Evaluation using transcription and qualitative methods. Research revealed 'significant impact and effectiveness'. The research revealed 'significant positive outcomes for all participants - residents, staff and family carers - in terms of communication, empowerment, wellbeing, cognitive abilities and relationships.'
'Daringly Able' is a 'Frames of Mind' documentary film about life in a care home, interspersed with stop frame animations created by staff and residents which celebrate their expertise and interests. From opera singing salmon sandwiches, a simulated tennis 'knock up' an iPad life drawing master class and runaway tea trollies. The film illustrates how we express ourselves through our skills, and how they are inherent to sense of self. 'Daringly Able' reveals how creative activities can restore and maintain these important links and positively impact the mental health and wellbeing of care staff, residents and their families.
Jewish Care commissioned 'Daringly Able' to ease the trauma of transition of Ella & Ridley, a much loved care home to a new site.
The brief was to work in an immersive way to produce a film - a legacy that could travel with them to the new site.
Our aim was to teach residents and carers how to use drawing and stop frame animation apps on iPads to help facilitate the delivery of the project and to feel empowered through learning something new.
Another important element of the project was staff training. The training programme was open to all, from hospitality staff, care staff, family members and managers.
Staff, in particular, are prominent in the film; proactively taking roles, interviewing residents on camera and being interviewed themselves. The production process became a vehicle for them to demonstrate their own professional 'skills' and integrity.
As filmmakers, Salmagundi had the privilege of spending whole days in the care home. This acceptance into the 'family' allowed us to capture the essence of the home. We hope the film reveals the humorous, touching and inspiring relationships between staff, family members and the friendships between residents themselves.