Discovering creative talent in the community

University College Isle of Man (UCM) is currently running an art exhibition, ‘Class of 2018’, which showcases over 90 paintings and drawings by its Leisure course students.

The artwork on display are mostly done by students who undertook the adult art classes at UCM in the 2017/2018 Academic year. These art classes are open for the public and the only prerequisite to enter these classes is the desire to learn to paint. Therefore, whilst some of the students in these classes may have had art training in the past, many do not have any art background at all.

Deborah Houlgrave, who teaches an 18-week art class for adults said, “The journey to discovering one’s creative side is liberating. In my classes, students are encouraged to develop new skills that enable them to express their own personal response to the world around them.
My weekly sessions provide a structured framework in which students’ creativity can flourish. I guide them by introducing a subject for a painting and demonstrate different techniques each week, before inviting students to have a go.”

UCM Leisure courses are developed in response to community need and are provided to offer something that is both fun and enriching for everyone. Students represent a wide cross-section of community, from ages between 20 to 90 years, and they all not only enjoy learning new skills, but also socialising with new friends.

Cathy Lord, Leisure Course Manager, UCM said, “One of the greatest things about life is that we never have to stop learning. People learn for different reasons and some just love learning because it is fulfilling. Our Leisure courses cover such a wide range of topics from astronomy to animation, jewellery making to photography, salsa to yoga and so much more. We hope that the breadth of course topics will inspire everyone in our community to embrace this opportunity to learn something new to follow their passion and rejuvenate their lives.”

UCM is committed to serve the Isle of Man community through excellence in training and education. It does so by offering a broad range of courses, which includes not only academic, vocational and professional courses, but also leisure and recreational courses.

The Class of 2018 art exhibition is currently taking place at UCM Main Campus, Homefield Road, Douglas. Members of the public are invited to attend to this free event, from Monday 20th August 2018 to Friday 24th August 2018, from 10am to 4pm.

UCM is currently taking registrations for its Leisure courses. To find out more about these courses or about this event, please call 01624 648200 or visit