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The Independent Voice of
Central West Queensland since 1923
Central West Queensland

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9 June, 2021

‘Paint and Sip’ fiesta

Paint and sip event provided opportunity for local creativity

By Kate Kiernan

Friday nights ‘Paint and Sip’ class was a success, with over 40 people in attendance. PHOTO: Kate Kiernan

LIQUID creativity was flowing last month at the Birdcage’s ‘Fiesta’ Paint and Sip class.  

The class provided the opportunity to socialise with friends and make new ones whilst creating a ‘Day of the Dead’ painting.   

Event coordinator, Emma Read said she has been running the paint and sip workshops for three years as she wanted to create an event that is fun and creative — but also touches on the premise of mental health.   

“I’ve been studying mental health, I wanted to come out to remote communities and expand on that idea,” said Ms Read. 

“The paint and sip classes are a really fun as its engaging and it brings people together and they are able to expand on their artistic abilities that they didn’t necessarily think that they had. 

“Each event is tailored to people that haven't picked up a paintbrush and I guarantee that everybody leaves with a beautiful piece.”  

Ms Read is originally from Charters Towers, and she said she knows how hard it can be for people from remote areas, as they do not get all the luxuries of those on the coast. 

“Even though I work with Queensland Health or here, it is the disaster recovery team in Longreach, and we have come up with ‘Connecting on Canvas’ that is an art workshop with a hyper-focus on the mental health side of things,” said Ms Read.  

“Those workshops don’t include alcohol, but it is still the same premise and so far they have been highly successful.  

“Queensland Health has been really happy with the results as it enables people to come forward, we have mental health nurses come in and talk and I do the art side of things. 

“This workshop breaks down barriers and enables people that little bit of leeway, where if they feel comfortable that they can come forward and talk about their mental health.  

 ‘Connecting on Canvas’ mental health workshops will be held throughout the year in Boulia, Birdsville, and Mount Isa.  

“I am very grateful, after a very rough year with covid that everyone has come here to support the event tonight.  

“It has been a really hard year and I'm so glad I can be here and help bring everyone back together and thank you to the support of the Birdcage and the staff who helped out tonight,” said Ms Read. 

Ms Read will also host workshops in the coming weeks at the Mount Isa Food and Wine festival.

To find out more about Emma’s next events head to her website

If you or someone you know needs help, call Lifeline on 13 11 14. 

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