Love is all around
by Helena Crawshaw


I was inspired to make this piece after a creative workshop during which we  looked at the work of patients who had been involved in the art exhibition ‘Heart Felt’.

We discussed the worries we have for our future lives as doctors and one of mine is that I will become emotionally immune to death and suffering; fittingly a message from one of the patients* to us was to remember to always keep our hearts anchored in what we love and remain grounded in why we wanted to be in medicine in the first place. When reflecting upon this I started to notice heart shapes in everyday life all around me and decided to take photographs of these. This then developed into my creative project – to remind everyone that Love is everywhere and to keep my heart anchored in love and humanity. The experience of this project has been very fitting to its title – as it became something that my friends really enjoyed and began to help me spotting heart-shaped things: many of these pictures were discovered by them. After a particularly difficult year we have come to appreciate and love each other and I feel this project has a parallel symbolic value for the power of friendship and love.

Helena Crawshaw

Intercalated Medical Humanities

Year Three, 2011

*the patient messages to this student-group can be visited in the  ‘Patient-Perspectives’ section of this website – within ‘Voices of Experience’

Artist’s comment

The Intercalated Medical-Humanities students were introduced to an array of patient images and words produced in a Creative Arts for Health workshop in a local G.P. surgery earlier that day. The students appreciated the patients’ directness and one of the group said it was a privilege to have received these messages, another student fashioned a clay smile in response to a patient’s comment that their doctor’s ‘one smile’ may be the only one they would receive that day. Students flagged up concerns such as ‘ loosing my bedside manner’, ‘forgetting patient’s names’, and observed -  ‘it is overwhelming trying to be a doctor  - how can I do all that? - and do it all at the same time?’ - ‘We came into medicine because we like to be with people – otherwise we would have become scientists!’ Supported by their sensitive G.P. educator, the group then discussed ways to attain the integration of clinical skills and personal values they desired in their future practice and later developed these ideas in clay.  

Brooklea Creative Arts for Health sessions in Brislington surgery Bristol were instigated by Dr Louise Younie in 2005 co-directed and supported by Dr Jonny Wood

Poet in residence – Fiona Hamilton

Artist in residence – Catherine Lamont-Robinson