Helfa Gelf

​Open Studios for the Digital Age

Published: 30.05.2018

The well-loved and long-running art studios trail in North Wales is making a big push for the digital age.

Over the coming months, Helfa Gelf will be diverting more of its resources and energy into actively promoting it’s artists and activities online.

Helfa Gelf is an amazing network of hugely diverse artists and makers that make up North Wales’ largest open studios event, which takes place in September each year. However, it doesn’t stop there.

Helfa Gelf also runs a hugely popular programme throughout the year, for both artists and visitors, offering professional development and training sessions, talks, residency opportunities and exhibitions.

For a small annual fee, each member has a directory listing with images that can be viewed throughout the year, meaning artists don’t have to run their own websites. Many artists groups and shared studios also use Helfa Gelf to connect to the public in this way. Now in its 13th year, Helfa Gelf has existed during a time of huge changes in both the landscape of the creative industries and the world of media. Where once we found out what was happening in our local and national newspapers, we are now informed via a constant stream of electronic alerts on our digital devices.

So the Helfa Gelf team have decided that it is time to fully embrace the digital age and really throw their resources and efforts into ensuring that their artists are strongly visible on-line. In the past where a printed booklet was produced for the open studios event it quickly went out of date, but with the bold decision to move everything online the efforts of the team can also be diverted into producing great content for the website and linking to social media to build a thriving and active community.

This positive shift to a more digital platform allows the Helfa Gelf team to share and publicise story rich content from the array of talented members who form this vibrant community 52 weeks of the year. A shift to digital allows a stream of marketing content to consistently flow week to week, with members having the opportunity to share their news and participate in a new ‘Members’ Focus’ initiative.

However, print is not dead! There will still be a simple printed leaflet, with the purpose to signpost people towards our online platform, where they can access all dates, details, directions to studios and plan their visit. (There will also be special features on artists their stories, and more news and other items changing throughout the year, making Helfa Gelf more of a year-round virtual open studio too!)

Rachel Rosen the new co-ordinator of Helfa Gelf says “Helfa Gelf has huge potential to be the no. 1 platform in North Wales for artists to get their work seen. Run only by a small team of mostly volunteers, it is important we use our limited resources wisely, and I believe now, it’s all about doing that through digital platforms to reach more people. With lots of lovely images of artwork and studios, it’s perfect for communicating on social media channels, and letting people know about the website and events too. I think this is an exciting time to be part of a Helfa Gelf”

Helfa Gelf are currently registering and renewing people for this year’s open studios event in September...

...with registrations extended to June 11...

...as there is no longer a print deadline for the booklet. Membership starts at £35, taking part in the open studios event with more promotional coverage  is £70 for individuals and starts at £120 for groups. If you haven’t been a member before, would like to know more about the benefits of membership, or get help registering, please do be in touch.

The Helfa Gelf Team

For more info see www.helfagelf.co.uk

Contact media@helfagelf.co.uk or Rachel (Co-Ordinator) rachel@helfagelf.co.uk

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