We will soon be welcoming the new cohort of students to our Creative Media Course. During our Applicant Event, which was run in our virtual classroom, we asked students to take a photograph, to communicate an activity or object or person that had helped them to remain positive during lockdown and to write a short paragraph reflecting on this.
At the beginning of the session, we all gave ourselves ‘lockdown names’ – our first names being how we were feeling and our surnames being the last thing we ate.
Although most of us were feeling slightly anxious at the beginning of the session, by the end, our ‘lockdown names’ had changed to Happy, Excited and Hopeful.
It’s clear that we all deal with things differently, and find comfort in the ‘little things’.
We were really impressed by the quality of the work produced, and look forward to working with all our new students in September.
Helen Holmes, Course Leader, AKA Nervous Cheese Straw
During lockdown, I’ve missed seeing my friends, colleagues and students face-to-face. I’m very lucky to be surrounded by my family every day, and spending more time than usual with them has been the best part of this difficult time. Even though I live firmly in the world of digital media communication, the fact that I can only see others via a screen and therefore can’t always tell how they’re feeling, has been a concern for me. At the end of a busy day, I find that working on my latest crochet project helps me to unwind and ‘think-out’ the day. I never thought I would hear myself say that! I find crochet quite challenging as I am new to it, so have to learn new stitches and concentrate, but this helps me to focus my mind and in turn let go of my anxieties. If it goes wrong it really doesn’t matter! If it goes well, I have something of value to me. It’s the little things.
Lucy Barugh, AKA Anxious Egg On Toast
Never before have I appreciated a window so much! While in lockdown the four walls of my home have become the new norm, with no real escape the window has become my portal to the outside world. It allows me to see what, if anything, is going on around me. I can see my friends, grandparents, and other family members. It Is funny what you take for granted when you have the freedom to do almost anything, but when it is all taken away you feel restricted, almost like you cannot breathe. The window, at times, has felt like a lifeline, a new way of breathing, and although it took some time to get used to, it now feels completely normal. Who would have thought that being able to see the birds on the fence and the plants growing would make such a difference to our day? For me at times it was the highlight of my day. It’s the little things.
Aaron Bell, AKA Happy Dorito
Walking in general has always been an enjoyable activity for me. Sitting down to plan a route and trekking through the countryside roads, fields and alongside rivers has always been something that I have found thoroughly enjoyable. Within the current circumstances, this has been something that I have been able to be active in a lot more, meeting up with close friends socially distanced for long walks, whether rainy or sunny, has always proven to give me a refreshing feeling throughout what can feel like such a negative time. The pure peacefulness and relaxation that going for a long walk creates for me contributes so positively to my mental health, this helps me to clear my mind and remember all of the positive and small aspects of life that I would usually take for granted, such as the outside world itself. Being able to stick in some earphones and listen to music creates an optimistic atmosphere in which I feel safe and content and witnessing the beauty of basic nature adds to this in such a vibrant way. It’s the little things.
Lorna Gwilliam, AKA Anxious Granola Bar
Lockdown has been a stressful period for countless individuals, many have looked for a form of expression or an outlet for this stress, this has been the cause for many individuals picking up or rediscovering old hobbies. For me, my art has helped me through this period, whether it is painting my walls or my guitar. Art has been proven effective for decreasing stress by reducing cortisol levels (a hormone that is partially responsible for regulating fight or flight), it can also be extremely satisfying when using specific techniques and can cause a lot of gratification when a piece is finished. My favoured style during lockdown has been geometric patterns and silhouettes under night skies due to the surprisingly complex and interesting looks these techniques can create and the overall sharp and satisfying lines. It’s the little things.
Joe Toft, AKA Nervous Cereal
One of the most important objects to me throughout lockdown has to be my Nintendo Switch game console. It has been especially important for me to be able to pass the time and escape the boredom of being stuck at home for what feels like forever. It has definitely helped me to manage despite the troubling times being in quarantine. Furthermore, it has given me a way to connect with other people and has made lockdown a lot less lonely, as I have been able to have fun and play together with my girlfriend in a virtual space on games we both enjoy, which has been amazing considering the difficulties surrounding meeting people face to face at the moment. In essence, my Nintendo Switch has allowed me to enjoy myself a lot more while away from everybody, has given me a lot more things to do, allowed me to connect with other people, and has made lockdown a lot more bearable than it would have otherwise been. It’s the little things.
Abi Evans, AKA Anxious Grape
Lockdown is tiresome and drab, but when you have a dog; there is always something to brighten your day. I see my dogs every day, but only now have I realised their importance. At the wag of a tail I will drop whatever I am doing and give them a cuddle, play with the ball, or go on a walk, as nothing beats a day with your dog. I have no shame in basing my days around them and as a result it distracts me from the negativity which is highly prevalent recently. Remaining balanced is essential, keeping routine is key, and my dogs have done nothing but aided me throughout lockdown. Wellbeing is important and especially sensitive during these times, and I have my dogs to thank for keeping me sane. It’s the little things.
Isha Samuel, AKA Anxious Croissant
During the initial chaos of lockdown, I struggled significantly with staying occupied while remaining calm with the uncertainty that came my way. One thing that kept me anchored was music; a simple way to let my mind wander into a transient world of my own creation. Most of my sleepless nights and anxiety-filled days would fly by like satellites the moment I put on my head-phones. The minutes quickly becoming hours as I listened intently to what can only be described as a very eclectic choice of songs. Gentle indie beats would suddenly be exchanged for fast-paced rock music before easing, albeit abruptly, into relaxing acoustic guitars and pianos. With each beat that I listened to, I found myself grounded in the focus each song would give me. Every note would let my worries and anxieties slip away for a while, bringing me back to the here and now. It’s the little things.