Hiya friends,

I’m having a tough time here at ATYN HQ.

Established in 2009 at The Flying Duck in Glasgow, ATYN didn’t need much admin in the first couple of years of trading. Word spread about us and people came rolling on down to the basement to sketch by the dozen. It was great! As things developed, people started to look online more and more for things to do in the city. So we began to list our events online.

Facebook presents a really great events listing platform and makes it so easy for me to single-handedly reach our customers, old and new.

Except for when it doesn’t.

We have started running life drawing sessions in the west end of Glasgow on Tuesday nights, due to popular demand. This is so exciting for us – we love getting this kind of feedback and kicking off a new project for sketchers to pop along to. I woke up this morning thinking about tonight’s event. One of our models, Izzy, is going to be posing with some interesting props and I’m excited about setting up a new back drop for the sketchers. I jump out of bed and channel this excitement in to a post within the Facebook event for the evening:

atyn glasgow facebook block magritte

Rene Magritte, Lola De Valence, 1948

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Within minutes, I am unexpectedly ejected from my personal Facebook account and told I have violated Facebook’s terms and won’t be able to post again for 30 days, from ATYN Glasgow nor from my personal account.

Our Instagram account was suddenly deleted, overnight. Again I was told we violated terms. We hadn’t posted anything in days.

Now this has happened before, when a photographic nipple or the like has accidentally slipped in to the ATYN feed, which I suppose is ridiculous, but understandable, as those are the rules. But this most recent issue concerns a painting. A famous painting by Magritte. I really don’t know what to say. But one thing is for sure, I am fed up of bending our words and holding back our imagery incase it violates Facebook’s terms.

My company exists to provide a fun and accessible drawing experience for anybody who fancies having a go. We strive to reach as many people as possible – those who may have never picked up a pencil to draw, those who want to try something new, those who want to use art as therapy, whatever, anything. The creatives in our community often know where to go, the art students have all the information they need regarding drawing experienced in the city, but we are trying to reach everyone else. This is what makes us different and what excites me the most about ATYN. And sadly, this is what is now becoming a struggle.

Well, nah. I won’t stand for it.

Over the Christmas period, ATYN has many exciting events lined up for the crowds across Scotland. We are hosting drawing sessions in Cass Art, collaborating with SWAG (Successful Women @ Glasgow), some of our models have special wintry themed sessions in the making for you, we are hosting a session at SWG3 and lots more. We want you to enjoy the fruits of our labour and I hate to think that I won’t be able to get the word out because of the limitations Facebook has burdened us with.

So we have this wonderful platform right here on the internet – our very own website – where we are free to speak, to share, to promote, to teach people and to broadcast the details of where and when we are holding events.

Please stick with us here at ATYN.CO.UK and we shall endeavour to keep you all up to speed with news and information about our life drawing sessions across Scotland. I promise you won’t be disappointed. We have just launched a YouTube channel which you can find in the “video”section of the site. I would LOVE to hear what you guys think about all of this, or simply to share your life drawing experiences, so please feel free to send me videos or links to uploads which I will use on the channel.

Sending you all big love for encouraging us through these challenges – I really appreciate all the continued support.

Joanna