Centre of Evidence Based Dermatology



The Dragon in my Skin

Images © 2021 Fiona Cowdell


Research Assistant Stephanie Lax from the CEBD has been proud to work with Professor Fiona Cowdell at Birmingham City University and local professional orchestra Sinfonia Viva on an artistic outreach project. It was designed to communicate 5 key messages about eczema self-care, and to raise awareness about the condition to the wider community. 

The five key messages:

1. Eczema is more than just dry skin
2. Eczema does not just go away
3. Moisturisers are for every day
4. Steroid creams are okay when you need them
5. You know your child’s eczema best


The creative project began with writer Hazel Gould and illustrator Jay Nolan-Latchford cleverly weaving these into the story “The Dragon In My Skin”. Then, through a series of creative workshops, Music Leader Abimaro Gunnell and Orchestrator Raph Clarkson drew out lyrics and themes from children and families affected by eczema, and created a soundtrack. With animators Abbie Canning and Darius Powell, a film was created to accompany the book.


Read the bookWatch the videoRead the CEBD blog about the work

We have also worked alongside teachers at BCU to develop a related cross-curricular resource pack aimed at KS1 teachers.

Free resource pack for teachers

For more information about the creative process and its roots in, please visit 

Eczema mindline projectSinfoniaViva


 NIHR Disclaimer: Fiona Cowdell is funded by a National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Knowledge Mobilisation Research Fellowship. This publication presents independent research funded by the NIHR. The views expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of the NHS, the NIHR or the Department of Health and Social Care. 

Centre of Evidence Based Dermatology

The University of Nottingham
Applied Health Research Building
University Park, Nottingham

telephone: +44 (0) 115 84 68631
email: cebd@nottingham.ac.uk