Hi! I'm Sophie and I'm from Brighton in England. I'm really excited to be working with ARI for the next three months.
My background is in printed textile design, which I studied at Leeds College of Art, graduating in 2010. For the last 2 years I've been based in Yorkshire designing for a womenswear retailer.
I've always wanted to travel and experience different cultures but it's taken me until now to find the right purpose. It was important to me to combine travelling with some sort of volunteering work as, I not only wanted to broaden my own horizons, I wanted to give something back.
I feel really passionately about the benefits of art and being creative, especially for people going through challenging times, whether it's dealing with neglect, bereavement or mental health issues. Art, in any form, is a way for people to express themselves and also offers a certain amount of escapism from whatever their problems may be. As someone who has had to deal with their own issues, I've always found being creative hugely beneficial. I believe everyone has it in them to be creative, they just maybe haven't discovered it yet!
Finding Art Relief International was a real light bulb moment for me. It combined the opportunity to visit Thailand, a country and culture that appealed greatly to me, with the chance to use my skills to benefit others. I've been here a couple of weeks now and so far it's been great. The team is wonderful and so dedicated to what they do. Chiang Mai is a beautiful city too, with so much to see and do. I'm constantly finding out about new places to visit.
Let the adventure continue!