Now I know Facebook isn't everybody's cup of tea but of all the social media platforms it is undeniably the most popular/well used.  It has an added facility allowing the creation of private/closed groups for interacting and easily communicating with collections of folk.

There's no point in me re-designing the wheel, so I have made a closed group on Facebook for each of my student groups [the link is in your workshop emails]: it's a place where you can share your work from this workshop, get feedback from me and chat with your peers - it's the closest thing we can get to a classroom/studio scenario.

One student was a little hesitant but here are her thoughts post workshop:

"Facebook does seem to work as a platform for a closed group.  There are only a few things you need to know in practical terms to successfully participate in the course.  It is easy to communicate, upload pictures when you are ready, participants respond as and when they want to, or just put ‘likes’, you get to see what other people on the course are up to, and Dionne seems to be checking in several times a day with helpful comments.  The language on this site is unfailingly positive .  And you do not need to take on a life as 'Someone On Facebook' apart from being a member of the particular group."

If you're not already on Facebook you can join here there is no need to add microscopic details of your life.  Facebook will continue without your date of birth, your martial status and your waist measurement!!! Only fill in the bits you want to and you can keep your profile completely private if you wish [adjust your settings at anytime: hover over the little wheel symbol at the top RHS of the screen & you'll find a drop down menu with a privacy setting plus many more options to manage your Facebook account]

A teenager is usually the best person to get you started if you're new to all this - my two are totally un-dectable  - I have no idea what they are up to at all!!

Know that:

  • This group is only for the students of this workshop: I have to accept people into the group & if you're not on the list, you're not getting in!!!!

  • No-one else can see what's written or posted there.

  • By default Facebook will email you whenever someone posts in the group - if you don't want this to happen use the 'notifications' tab to turn this facility off.  You are in control & can drop into the group whenever suits you throughout the workshop.

  • If you would like to upload a photograph of some of your work, click 'Add Photo/Video' [in blue text].  Follow the on screen instructions - you will then be able to add text that will be seen with your image.

  • If you would like to review all the photos uploaded within the group click the Photos tab; the grey one this time.

  • Under each image or comment there is the opportunity for you to add your commentary too - just click 'comment' and add your thoughts.

Thoughts for happy 'Facebooking!'

  • Please be mindful not to 'swamp' the group - only add one or 2 images from each exercise and wait to receive relevant feedback.  I shall drop in each day - you are all over the world & in different time zones...

  • Always be supportive.

  • Keep to the point, stay relevant.

  • I will respond where I need to - offering my feedback to thoughts, difficulties and images, but I aim not to repeat myself & clog up the group.  Commentary on any post may be useful to you all, so it's always worth having a daily check to see what's been said.

  • Please engage in discussions rather than being a passive on-looker.

I have a Facebook 'page' Dionne Swift: Textile Artist where you can follow my to-ings and fro-ings.