Charity is “squids in”

Judi Mitchell with one of Jeremy Cunningham's designs.'Staff photo
Judi Mitchell with one of Jeremy Cunningham's designs.'Staff photo

A MONTROSE tattoo artist and a rock musician have teamed up in a unique partnership to raise money for people with brain injuries.

Judi Mitchell, who owns the Ink Minx Tattoo Studio in Lower Hall Street, and Jeremy Cunningham, bass guitarist with The Levellers, have produced a range of T-shirts and tote bags to raise funds for Momentum Skills in Aberdeen.

The two met at a festival last year, when Judi took the chance to enlist Jeremy’s help with her fund-raising effort. He is responsible for the majority of the band’s artwork and his specially-designed “squid man” features on the merchandise.

Judi decided to raise funds for Momentum Skills after her brother, Alan, suffered a brain injury as a result of an accident and started to attend the charity’s brain injury vocational rehabilitation programme in July last year.

She said: “As it’s the 10th anniversary of my studio, we decided to put together some merchandise to sell at the Scottish Tattoo Convention to raise money for various charities.

“Jeremy does the majority of artwork for the band and he mentioned that he wanted a squid tattoo. I jokingly said that I’d do his tattoo if he did a doodle for my charity t-shirts and bags. He kept his part of the deal and sent me a sketch of ‘squid man’.

“I’ve done a lot of fund-raising for charities and decided to turn my attention to Momentum after my brother had an accident which resulted in a brain injury. He was lucky to recover to the extent that he has and, with the help of Momentum, he has learned to cope with everyday life and learned new skills.”

Alan added that the Momentum Skills, which offers specialist training, job coaching and work placement, had helped him to accept the injury and move on with his life.

He said: “It has also helped me to rediscover some of my existing skills and even helped me to develop some new ones that I didn’t have before like using I.T.

“Meeting other people at Momentum who also have a brain injury and share some of the same difficulties has also been a positive experience; it helped to reduce some of the isolation I felt when I was learning to live with my brain injury.

“But most importantly, Momentum has given me hope about returning to employment, which is something I really hope to be able to do in the future.”

The t-shirts and bags are available from Ink Minx by calling 01674 678989 or e-mailing inkminxtattoos@hotmail.co.uk. They are also available from Momentum Skills’ Aberdeen centre on 01224 625 580 or by e-mailing george.robertson@momentumscotland.org.