Creative ways to respond to Covid-19

Our artist in residence, Alec Finlay has shared some fantastic ideas to help us all be more inventive.


Whether you are shielding, self-isolating, home working or on the front line all of us can benefit from taking time to be creative.  Art, in all its various forms, helps us to find meaning in our world and by each of us becoming, even slightly, more imaginative we are helping ourselves to adapt to change.

Covid-19 creative toolkit

Dip into Alec’s Covid-19 creative toolkit which is full of ideas such as taking the time to look through a magnifying glass at rocks, shells, leaves or sticks you have gathered on a walk. Explore these new micro landscapes and connect with nature in a new way.

Write an “I Remember” poem

Joe Brainard's “I Remember” is one of the most frequently borrowed poetic forms. We all have memories and “I Remember” is a great way to reflect on what has been, what is happening and what could become.

Read more on Alec’s website 

Audio Walk

Another idea is to go on an audio walk using field recordings such as those gathered by sound recordist Chris Watson. It is amazing what you can see in your mind simply from listening to the acclaimed voices of nature.  

A walk in summer in a Caledonian Pinewood

A walk in spring in the Flow Country

Thank you to Chris Watson for releasing these two sound recordings for free.

Thinking about the places where we walk can help us to remain connected to our landscape, for example, Alec writes: "I’ve been thinking about Balloch, a town I was supposed to visit for my work with Paths for All and now cannot. The name comes from the Gaelic, bealach, a way of pass. In gathering ideas I wrote: "the bealach is a point for the drover or walker to aim for and navigate with care, and the term is like a thread stretching out from the knot of a narrow pass."

In other words, it’s the squeezed point that you go through by, a narrowing that comes to refer to the whole path. We’ve entered the bealach of Coronavirus.

I wonder if the local walkers have an idea where the path and pass that Balloch refers to is located? Perhaps the route of the Old Military Road? Does it go between hills? Over Balloch is a name that might suggest the pass is below there?

Bed dances

We can all dance, in our own truly unique style. If you are bed-bound Rachel Smith offers ideas on how dance can take any shape or form. For example, an ankle and toe-dance can begin by moving your hands, then your toes, followed by your ankles, and finally your wrists. Now your toes are talking to your fingers. You created an ankle and wrist duet.

Get ideas on more bed dances online

Read Alec’s recent blog about how creativity can be used to respond to Covid-19 to help overcome mass isolation and widespread anxiety.   

Find out more about our work with Alec here.

Please share your ideas on ways you are connecting to your environment or staying active indoors on our Twitter, Facebook or Instagram social media accounts.