University of Cambridge Museums

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Whats App? Digital Creativity in Museums and Galleries

IMG_1177Museum Educators from the Fitzwilliam Museum and Whipple Museum were inspired by artist Susie Olczak who presented an interactive training session on using digital creativity with our visitors.

Using a range of devices from smart phones to tablets Susie demonstrated some of the popular creative apps.

Paper: (our new favourite!) an app for creating your own digital sketchbook with a range of mark making and art tools; pens, graphite, brushes colour palettes, washes. With the finished pages available next time you visit your ‘Paper’ sketchbook.

Instagram: after our initial silly photo share moments we started to discuss how this might work and how it has great potential for modifying and sharing images that you take during your Museum or Gallery visit, plus as a way of ‘hash tagging #’ your event, workshop, exhibition.

Vine: very short video and stop gap animation options, which are good for making creative responses to share online and to experiment with moving image. It has a super 8 quality to the fun do-it-yourself film makers but is much less fiddly.

We talked about several other similar apps; Sketch, Bamboo paper, Pic Collage, Book creator.

But behind all this digital creativity is an individual visitor engaging with their experience of the Museums. These digital apps are an enhancement to this experience and can offer a more engaged experience than simply taking a phone camera snapshot. We discussed how our different visitor groups might use these apps most effectively from primary and secondary school visits, Arts Award to Outreach groups and Family programmes.

There was, of course, a discussion on data protection and safe guarding, with the door to this discussion still open with room for further sensible thinking for positive outcomes.

On the whole these apps, like any resource, work most successfully with a few structured starting places offered by experienced Museum Facilitators.

Sarah-Cate Blake, Education Officer, Fitzwilliam Museum

One comment on “Whats App? Digital Creativity in Museums and Galleries

  1. Pingback: Whats App? Digital Creativity in Museums and Galleries | digitalcollaboration

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