The Drawing Box

During the pandemic, we’ve needed to find new ways to work with our creative communities, whilst keeping everyone safe. We knew we needed to work digitally and non-digitally during Covid 19, and so The Drawing Box Project was born!

Although we have now handed out all 500 drawing boxes to the residents, workers and artists of Keighley, and to the supporters of Keighley Creative, you can still join in with the online challenges and downloadable worksheets using your own materials- and share with us on our social. Next year they will put out a new instalment so why not start now?

This is a drawing project for all ages and abilities, and our starting point this year is Your House is a Museum. Projects all over the world have picked this theme and it’s easy to see why. In a moment of crisis, when we all knew we would be indoors, we went to investigate the objects around us. So we are asking you to share favourite or interesting objects, tell their story and use them as a starting point for fun drawing activities. 

Most recently Naseem and Gemma have trialled some Live From the Gallery Window demos, which have been inspiring for all involved. Artist Louise Garrett, an urban sketcher has been documenting these events and the project as it has unfolded, and will be showing her drawings alongside the sketchbooks and boxes in an exhibition at the end of the month.

Watch this space for more Live from the Gallery Window entertainment soon! 

Airedale Hospital Voluntary Services
Magic Drawing
Naseem Darbey Live from the Gallery Window
Natalie Oldham

Call for Drawing Box Drawings and Stories!

Are you enjoying this year’s Drawing Box Project? It’s the last two weeks and we would LOVE to see how you are getting on.

We have been sharing lots of your brilliant drawings and photos online, but we can never have too many! You can share pages from your sketch books and fold out sheets, or tell us about the objects you have chosen. Let us know what you’ve enjoyed, what would have made it even better, and what you would like us to do next year. Your feedback is very important to us, thank you.

You can share your images on the Keighley Creative Instagram and Facebook pages, remembering to use our hashtags: #kcdrawingboxproject and #yourhouseisamuseum, or you can email images or comments to Naseem directly at

Pete Blagg - Drawing Box Project
Pete Blagg
Jane Gerwitz Drawing Box Project
Jane Gerwitz

Kaff Intimate a new type of festival for Keighley

Remember 2019 and the first Keighley Arts and Film Festival?  We have not been able to go live this year with fantastic performances, so we have devised special events to take place online. Keighley Arts and Film Festival will be accessed via Facebook and Youtube.  The online Festival has been named ‘Intimate’ for this 2020 year and will come directly from the sofa’s of our performers to yours.

We have lined up for you exciting events including fresh new talent from Keighley.

Briefly this includes Rose Wheeler and Bryan Diggle performing favourite songs. Some of you will know Rose from the popular Keighley duo Felka, Rose with her beautiful voice and theatrical skills will create something spectacular for Keighley residents. Brian accompanies her on a range of instruments. We are asking everyone to contribute to the selection process for songs on the Keighley Arts and film Festival Facebook. Look out for Rose and Bryan’s first release Friday 31st July – this will be their own rendition of Cars by Garry Numan. Watch out for the extraordinary video!  Further releases of remakes of some classic songs will follow as August progresses. 

Follow us on Facebook to find out more: Keighley Arts and Film Festival

Our favourite story teller Sue Dyde will present Murky Tales of Keighley, skillfully creating a web of intrigue with her quirky tales. This will be experienced as a podcast online. Murky Tales will be released towards the end of September.

Nabila Ahmed, multilingual poet will be delivering as a podcast, a series of beautiful poems covering themes such as love, injustice and isolation. A tonic for our times Nabieela’s poems sing out with personal experience and warmth. During August, She will read a selection of her poetry in 3 languages, Urdu, Bahari and English. Nabeela will be holding an online tea party and poetry reading for all to take part in on Friday 28th August. This will be online and will be widely publicised. At the tea party we will be hearing a little of her poetry and talking to Nabeela about her career in spoken word with a question and answer session. You can hear more from Nabeela and the team behind this years festival on Asian Fever Radio in August. 

During October the RATMA Film Festival will take place and we will be making announcements nearer the time about that.  We are looking forward to seeing what Films Marcus and Gareth have found around the world for us to see. Have a look on the RATMA festival web site for details of how to enter your films into the competition.


#OurStreetGallery: Through Our Lens

Photographs taken by teenagers of their lives in lockdown have gone on display on billboards, lamp posts and houses in Keighley and across the district, and we have a lovely collection on show in our new project space windows (In the Cavendish Retail Park).

The photographs were taken for Through Our Lens, a project led by photographer Carolyn Mendelsohn, who came-up with idea at the start of lockdown when nearly all her upcoming work was cancelled or postponed. Carolyn put a call-out on social media and got a huge response. In collaboration with Bradford College, she mentored more than 40 young people in photography, through video conferencing and weekly online workshops. 

The resulting images include glimpses of the outside world through bedroom windows, poignant journals and self portraits reflecting a sense of isolation. Teenagers taking part included a number of refugees who moved here shortly before lockdown. The striking photographs – which gained global attention and were praised by the New York Times– are on Instagram @through_our_lens_covid19_proj/. 

The Our Street Gallery is a stand alone 12-month project transforming Bradford district’s streets into live gallery spaces. Watch out for information about Phase Two here!

#ourstreetgallery and through our Lens supported by Bradford Council

Image via Telegraph & Argus

LISA HOLMES: Crowdsourced Lockdown Series

At Keighley Creative we are interested in how artists and the public work together. Collaborative, interesting and heartfelt creative responses have been in abundance during these difficult and confusing times, and it is a pleasure to showcase some of this wonderful new work here.

During the early days of the pandemic, photographer Lisa Holmes started a project which documented people’s lives during the COVID-19 pandemic. The vast majority of the images in the project were crowdsourced, meaning that everyone could join in and submit photographs of their experiences, which Lisa then catalogued and shared.

Right from the start Lisa received a wealth of support from local community groups including Keighley Health Living, the Bangladeshi Community Association, Friends of Haworth Park, Cliffe Castle Museum and Gardens, Roshni Ghah, Keighley Parish Mission Outreach, The Food Bank, Hainsworth Wood Community Centre and The Shed- all of whom have contributed images.

Versions of this project have taken place all over the world during this crisis and together we are creating a global, visual archive of this moment in time. The artists and photographers who have championed these projects are now considering how to take care of these important collections, ensuring these stories are seen at local, national and international level.

Lisa Holmes: Crowdsourced Lockdown Series was supported and funded by Bradford Council and Cliffe Castle Museum.

Helen James
Mr Smith at home during the lockdown.
Abigail Crewe 
My daughter, aged 3, loved clapping for the carers each week. She knew it was important as she watched her mummy go to work as a healthcare support worker each day.
Jeanette Fleming
Keep distance, 
Miss stance,
Light and shadows, 
Life stance,
Bright dance,
“Oh my breath!”  
Elaine Cooper
A lonely wait, 
for the Pilates class on zoom. 
You can see faces, hear instructions but 
it’s just not the same – 
no time for friendly chat 
we stretch our bodies but not the soul.