Creativity in isolation

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Living in a village, far from families and old friends, opportunities to attend events in person, and to exchange experiences with like minded people are limited anyway, but with lockdowns, even visits to friends and family were impossible, and of course all cultural venues were closed. The internet has been my window to the outside world, and I have been trying to make the most of the outreach efforts of the “big” cultural bodies in London and elsewhere.


The novelty, the steep learning curve, and the sheer busyness helped to manage the experience of 1st lockdown. However, planned holidays, visits, our usual parties and outings were all cancelled, and everything was closed - a huge gap in social and cultural life. My regular sewing group had already stopped - several of the women had serious health problems -and we’ve only recently restarted our meetings well after the end of the 2021 lockdown.

I proposed to my sewing buddies a joint sewing project, creating weekly 15 cm square “samplers” through the first lockdown, but only a couple of women took up the challenge. Hoping to include them in the parish church’s idea of a Covid wall hanging, but that’s all gone quiet now. Sometimes zoomed with friends for “crafternoons”. I once attended a community funded Zoom craft morning (materials provided) , but found the time limit challenging, and didn’t have time to engage socially with new people.

Weekly zoom meetings with family, we also often set each other creative challenges, e.g. recreating old photos, making films, mask-making with household recycling and so on, but again some people found it intimidating or bothersome, and one family dropped out altogether.

Just before the first lockdown, I’d been looking forward to an exhibition of my own Japanese toy collection at our local museum, to coincide with the Tokyo Olympics. The original start date was now pushed forward a year, and it was very nearly cancelled altogether. Only the passion and determination of the curator, and a change in focus to include other people’s collections, has made the exhibition still viable., and opening soon.

Have enjoyed ballet and opera relays from Covent Garden, local musicians, but we had mixed success with live theatre/comedy because of syncing issues,. One day had a lovely private recital by an Opera North harpist.

We don’t have a TV but I use YouTube, BBC Sounds, BFI/Mubi & Spotify for visual and audio entertainment.

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