Printing Positive Change
We believe in progress through positive purpose, so we've collaborated with Printed By us, to create an art print of our popular Burn Bright design.
All of the proceeds from the project went back into the enterprise, which teaches screen printing and employability skills to people in recovery from homelessness and other challenging circumstances.
John and Anna, who have recently taken part in Printed By us workshops.
A few years ago, whilst living in Sheffield (alongside running The Level Collective), I helped to start Printed By us.
I wanted to use creativity to provide positive opportunities for vulnerable people who have experienced homelessness – but also to bring the local creative community and wider community together.
The premise is simple:
1. Teach screen printing skills to people in recovery from homelessness.
2. Print beautiful artwork created in collaboration with talented local artists.
3. Sell said awesome art prints online and at local craft and farmers markets – with all proceeds going back into growing the project.
Printed By us is not about giving 'hand-outs' or creating a 'pity-purchase' for people to buy and feel good about themselves. It’s about giving opportunities for people to be a part of something positive and creative, and potentially a paid employment opportunity within the project.
It’s a collaborative project that creates unique, quality products that customers are proud to wear and put on their walls.
Almost five years later and Printed By Us continues to flourish, having had more than 25 people take place in their workshops, and employing more than seven people in various capacities.
“I’ve been involved with Printed By us from the very start, when Mark first presented the idea to us. Since then my life has changed significantly. I’d reached bottom a few months before. Printed By us came along at just the right time and has been a helpful point of focus in my journey of recovery."
James, now Operations Manager and a good friend, continues...
"It’s given me a lot of confidence, as I’ve learned so many new skills and pushed myself. I’m proud to work as part of an amazing team, and it’s great to see new people involved in the project at various stages in their own recovery journey."
Personally, it’s been amazing to see the project go from strength-to-strength and to see how the local creative community has been so engaged, as well as the people of Sheffield, who have been incredibly supportive with buying the art prints and clothing.
Printed By us also offers a custom garment printing service to brands, businesses, universities and charities – hand printing onto ethically-made and organic garments.
They’ve now even opened their own shop in Sheffield, and started a franchise project in Leeds with local Leeds artists, with the hope also of starting more projects further afield.
Naturally, it’s a project which is close to my heart, and we thought it would be fun to do a collaborative print.
We chose Burn Bright because it’s become one of our most popular designs. It’s a positive message; something that everyone has needed more than ever in the last year or so.
The prints have turned out beautifully. We’d love it if you could support Printed By us and have a piece of positive change on your walls.
All photography by our talented pal James Stanhope.