“At Wild West, we believe it’s really important to invest in our team, giving them the time, training and resources to allow them to flourish. Our People Project was borne out of this conviction, the idea being that if we help our staff be the very best they can, they’ll help take our business to greater heights.

From flexible working patterns to bespoke life coaching sessions, our People Project is designed to value and nurture each employee. Earlier this year we ran a ‘Make Me Better’ prize fund, set up to give a helping hand to a particularly passionate Wild Wester who wanted to explore and develop a hobby outside of work and needed funding to do so (for a course for example).

To win the prize, the challenge was to give a five-minute pitch to the whole company, explaining how developing the hobby would make them even better and, in turn, add value to our clients and business.

This was a great experience for the team – especially our juniors – giving them the opportunity to present to a group and receive feedback. In PR, our presentation skills obviously need to be second to none, and learning how to be articulate, clear and persuasive at the pitch stage is key. 

Megan was the beneficiary of the ‘Make Me Better’ prize, after a truly inspiring pitch in which she told us how art was her lost passion, and why a landscape oil painting course at the Newlyn School of Art would help her rediscover this love. Megan explained how getting her creative juices flowing again would help her with her lateral thinking at work, and she promised to give us beautiful paintings to hang on our office walls – so of course we said yes! Read on to find out how Meg enjoyed the course….” 

Words: Georgie Upton

Divisional Director at Wild West Comms

Newly Art School course, Porthgwarra

Since my foundation degree in art and design at Falmouth University, way back in 2009, I’ve found it difficult to find the time and inspiration to paint – something I loved to do. When I heard about the ‘Make Me Better’ fund, I saw it as an opportunity to pitch for an experience that would reignite my creative flare and get that paint brush back in my hand!

Newlyn School of Art is a dynamic and innovative art school based in the heart of the famous artistic colony of Newlyn in Cornwall, a few hundred yards from where the Forbes School of Painting was run by Stanhope Forbes, the ‘father’ of the Newlyn School of Painters. The school provides a range of high quality short art courses in disciplines such as painting, drawing, printmaking, pottery, stone carving and fabric design – all taught by thirty of the most well know artists working on Cornwall today. I knew that this course was something that would really inspire me to get back into oil painting, and as soon as I was told that I had won the prize, I couldn’t wait to book myself onto the four day Cornish landscape course at the school.

The course is taught by Maggie O’Brien, a Cornwall-based artist who often paints the wild and rugged landscape of Penwith and the Scilly Isles. She draws and paints outdoors, returning to the studio to take works further and her paintings are a mixture of place, memory and imagination.

Maggie was a wonderful teacher and, over the four day course, we painted in beautiful locations around Cornwall, from Newlyn Harbour to St. Just. I was taught techniques with oils that transformed the way I paint and the course greatly improved my confidence to keep creating work in new and interesting ways, both in my home life and at work.

Megan Hocking - Senior Campaign Executive at Wild West Comms

Words: Megan Hocking

Senior Account Executive at Wild West Comms