Well it’s safe to say we were all a but stunned when we laid our eyes on the UK government advert which resurfaced this month.
For those of you that might not have seen it, it was a simple poster ad featuring an image of a ballet dancer lacing up her ballet shoes alongside a caption that reads, ‘Fatima’s next job could be in cyber. (She just doesn’t know it yet)’. It signs off with the government QA Retraining Programme’s slogan: ‘Rethink. Reskill. Reboot.’
It has been recognised that the campaign was created a while ago, we’re still unclear when exactly, but it’s a blatant disregard for the arts and it only took the powerful and innovative minds of creative practitioners to spell it out to the government who latterly removed if from their website.
It’s an incredibly tough time for many at the moment due to the impact of the pandemic, especially for creatives. But I don’t believe in squashing dreams and dismissing jobs in the arts as ‘unviable’ as we’re all consuming more creative output than ever before and we’ll lose the entertainment that keeps us all sane in these strange times. From my perspective, it simply displayed a lack of respect and understanding for those gifted to answer their felt call to be performers, artists and creatives. Fatima does not do dance, she is a talented dancer, and cannot be 'rebooted'. Thankfully she knows that, and is more than capable of channelling her energy, passion and expressiveness, integral to who she already is, to wait purposefully for her next opportunity to do what she loves and perform.
We firmly believe that Scotland is a place where our creative culture should be valued, protected and nurtured. Creativity is woven through our everyday life and shapes the society we live in. At Prickly Thistle we are creatives and we work closely with other skilled artisan manufacturers and producers. From the fabric production in our mill to our Elements of Essence Soaps and design of our home interiors, we’re living, breathing creatives that can contribute. Not only that, we’re also working hard to recognise other creatives that might be struggling for work at the moment, for example our Tartan Rebel Spotify playlists that highlight the pure talent of local musicians. We will continue to strive to raise the profile of creatives in Scotland as we know the arts add so much to our daily lives and are something we simply cannot live without.