Calm doggies

Project: Project Soothe

A new initiative is on a mission to improve mental health and wellbeing.

Project Soothe is working to create a database of soothing photographs that can be shared. The idea is that imagery can play an important role in mediating how we feel and that deliberately and consciously looking at calming images can help us feel better.

You can help Project Soothe in two ways.

First, you can help by answering a short survey. This survey will help researchers understand more about the characteristics of some of the images they have gathered and how these images may influence mood and wellbeing. Simply go to the Project Soothe website (link above) and click Participate and then click Rate Photos. After confirming your consent to participate, you will be asked to confirm your age, gender and country. You will then asked some general questions about your mood and wellbeing. You will also be asked to look at 25 images that members of the public have submitted to Project Soothe and tell the research team what you think and feel about them. As a bonus, you will also be given an opportunity to enter a draw to win a £30 (about $40 USD) Amazon gift voucher.

Second, you can contribute photos that you find calming to the database, and add your comments about them as well. These should be your own photos, and the copyright remains with you; do be aware that the photos may end up on public display and used in the database and in future research. If you have any questions about how this part works, read the explanation and consent form for photo submission carefully here:

The project is led by Dr Stella Chan, a lecturer at the University of Edinburgh. Other researchers include Prof Matthias Schwannauer (University of Edinburgh), Dr Fiona Ashworth (Anglia Ruskin University) and Ms Angela McLaughlin (University of Edinburgh).

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