The Wolverhampton people using art to beat addiction

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image copyrightNelson Douglas
image captionNaomi took up art as a form of therapy and then recently sold this painting

An exhibition of artwork by people battling addiction shows "recovery is achievable," say organisers.

The display, in Wolverhampton, has been created at community art groups by those in recovery and fighting drug and alcohol dependencies.

Naomi, a service user who now volunteers at Recovery Near You, took up art as a form of therapy and has even sold a painting.

"I never imagined my paintings would be in a magazine or exhibition," she said.

image copyrightNelson Douglas
image captionDarren, a Good Shepherd service user, created a cartoon strip with the help of a professional artist

The exhibition at the Light House has been taking place throughout September, to mark National Recovery Month.

Organiser Kate Penman said it was giving hope to those involved and could inspire others.

"Too often we see the negative face of addiction and mental health," she said.

"Hopefully the exhibition will encourage those not yet in recovery to take that important first step... and remind others of just how far they have come on their journey," she added.

image copyrightNelson Douglas
image captionRecovering addict Terry completed this artwork in 2017 on prison bed sheets from HMP Exeter

Ms Penman, who is also publishing the work in community arts magazine COLLECTIViSM, said the art emerged from workshops at The Good Shepherd Ministry and local recovery hubs.

Darren, who is homeless, created a pencil cartoon that local artist Robin Firth helped turn in to a colour comic strip.

"Doing my art again and seeing it exhibited is making me think differently about my future..I'm proud of what I've done and I love how Robin has taken my idea and then just brought it alive," he said.

The exhibition is open until Friday and all proceeds will go to the Good Shepherd Ministry.

image copyrightNelson Douglas
image captionLeanne, who is recovering from mental health issues, said her work is about "shaping all my imperfections into something beautiful".

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