“Just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean it isn’t there”

The Whitworth has three emerging artists who are paid members of the core group; Whitworth Young Contemporaries. Each artist has been undertaking outreach with a young people’s group as part of their role. Digital artist, Sophie Mahon has been working with Manchester Youth Council and House of Manchester to create a short film about Mental Health. Here is what she has got up to…

Over the past several months I have been working with Manchester Youth Council to develop a film to target the stigmas attached to mental health issues. Through the project the group have researched the many issues that can affect young people, collaboratively written a script and narrative for their film and held a casting day, attracting young actors from across the North West.

To produce the film the group choose an area they would like to lead on, these included set design, directing and filming and together we were ready to make our film. We shot the whole film in Manchester Town Hall, transforming the space into different bedrooms, classrooms and coffee shops using our creative skills. We then edited the film, deciding together on how we wanted the overall film to look and what messages were most important for us to get across.

Working on the film has been one of the many highlights of my time working as an Artist in Residence at the Whitworth, watching the group rise to the challenge of creating a film about such a important but challenging issue was really inspiring and I am proud to say I was part of their development.

Our film is now live and will be used as a learning resource in schools, colleges and hospitals across the North West to educate, support and inform other young people about mental health issues.