From making masks to creating self-portraits – details have been unveiled of a series of online workshops with Spring Fling artists.

These will appeal to a range of ages and can help with home schooling, there will even be the chance to build your own miniature world with charming houses made from juice cartons.

Upland CIC arts agency has unveiled details of SF | At Home, a digital programme running from 18 to 24 May that is designed to fill some of the gap left by the postponement of Spring Fling – Scotland’s leading open studios weekend.

The live event would have seen 87 artists and craft makers across Dumfries & Galloway throw open their doors to around 12,000 visitors between 23 and 25 May.

Instead Upland, which organises Spring Fling, is taking the artists into people’s own homes and giving them to chance to learn artistic skills ideal for isolation.

The workshops are all free and will be available for the full week at They are:

  • Drawing Under Lockdown (two-part workshop) – Liz Gilbey 
  • Juice Box Houses – Emily Tough, WBF Artist in Residence
  • Making Your Mark (two-part workshop) – Bella Green  
  • Mask Making – Livy Nelson  
  • Paper-Batik – Pamela Grace  
  • Paper Weaving – Janet Hughes  
  • Self Portrait in Isolation – Blossom Mccuaig   

SF | At Home will also involve virtual studio tours and an online exhibition of the delightful puppets and buildings that Emily Tough created as the Spring Fling and Wigtown Book Festival Artist in Residence. All were inspired by stories and people at the book festival and have been placed inside a mini big top.

Joanna Macaulay, Assistant Director for Upland, said: “Our artists have come up with some great ideas that are ideal for life during lockdown – from self-portraits to mask-making. 

“With the Scottish Government calling on us all the stay at home, SF | At Home offers ways to learn new skills, be creative and also to keep children entertained with fun and positive projects and help with home schooling.”

The Spring Fling website is being updated to showcase all the studios selected for Spring Fling 2020 and with a variety of art and craft to browse and buy. Everything will be live on the website from Monday, 18 May at noon.

The SF | At Home online activities are also an important way for Upland CIC to help support artists, makers and small businesses – many of them facing substantial challenges due to the lockdown.  


Notes for editors 

About Spring Fling

  • A new date for this year’s event will be announced in the coming months – watch the website for details.
  • Spring Fling is one of the UK’s most successful contemporary visual art and craft events having attracted well over 100,000 visitors (who have made more than 300,000 studio visits) since it began in 2003.
  • Visitors from the UK and beyond enjoy meeting the creators of high-quality work and see their studios in country and coastal cottages, farms, converted chapels, custom-built studios and a multitude of other settings.
  • Last year 74% of visitors had been to a previous Spring Fling, 26% were new, and 99% would come again.
  • 98% rated Spring Fling as excellent or good.
  • 57% of visitors were from outside Dumfries and Galloway.
  • Visitors spent close to £1.4 million in the region.
  • More than half Spring Fling visitors spend one night or more in the region.
  • For further details visit or contact

About Upland

Upland CIC (Community Interest Company) supports artists and makers based in, and with connections to, the region. It will delivers, events, training, networking, support and opportunities as part of a year-round programme to benefit the region, its artists, communities and economy. Upland CIC runs the annual Spring Fling contemporary visual art and craft open studios weekend in Dumfries and Galloway. It will work closely with other arts bodies in the region to further-strengthen the sector. Upland is based at Gracefield Arts Centre in Dumfries and exists to:

  • produce and deliver festivals, events, and experimental projects of the highest quality
  • nurture an environment where artistic excellence thrives and grows
  • inspire and educate a wide range of audiences, customers and clients to understand, celebrate, be actively engaged in and supportive of visual art and craft practice
  • raise the profile of visual artists and makers locally, nationally and internationally fulfilling a crucial role in the culture and tourism of Dumfries and Galloway
  • build strategic partnerships at regional, national and international level
  • maintain a financially sound and adaptively resilient organisation
  • use, and encourage the use of, innovative and emerging digital technology
  • work to the benefit the local economy and the sustainability of local communities.

Its funders are Creative Scotland, D&G Council, The Holywood Trust, The William Grant Foundation, The Heritage Lottery Fund, ASWT, Barfill. 

For media information contact Matthew Shelley on 07786 704299 or at or call Upland on 01387 213 218.