Young artists getting creative during lockdown

Lockdown bubble: Jeannie Herring, of Te Anau, (centre) who organised and tutored Online Art Te Anau 2020 with Alzbeta Holcekova (left), known as BB, and Rastislav Kopca, known as Rusty.Both BB and Rusty are from Slovakia and were staying with Jeannie and son Satori during the lockdown.With lockdown looming, BB and Rusty were caught out the day before the restrictions came into effect after coming out of a tramping trip to Mavora Lakes. They had no idea the situation was so serious and Herring offered them accommodation. They are currently essential workers in Motueka picking fruit. Photo: Supplied

COVID-19 lockdown has seen many initiatives to occupy people at home during the past weeks.

Te Anau woman Jeannie Herring, an artist with a Diploma in Art and Creativity (Advanced), held programmes before the pandemic, so it wasn’t difficult for her to launch Online Art Te Anau 2020 during Alert Level 4, she said.

Launched on March 24, the day before lockdown, up to 13 people expressed interest in the art programme, mostly of primary school age.

Herring launched a video to explain the process, split into three parts, to make it easier to decipher the instructions with the theme, Experience Feeling during the Lockdown.

“I would prefer one-on-one teaching, it produces better results.

“Parents whose kids are participating are giving brilliant feedback to me, expressing my enthusiasm for the project,” she said.

Herring first relocated to Manapouri in 2006 and moved to Te Anau six months later.

She also had a stint in Bluff for three years which saw her establish the Art Kids Bluff programme in 2014.

Bluff children were producing a variety of art mediums including painting, tie-dyeing, sculpturing and mask making.

The programme, supported by Creative NZ, saw about 15-18 children of all ages take part each day.

To reward the children’s efforts, an exhibition was held in January 2015 where the Bluff children’s paintings, sculptures and masks were shown.

“As an incentive, the kids were allowed to sell one of their paintings as long as they had another for display at the exhibition. Two works were sold, much to the delight of the kids,” she said.

Currently, Herring was sourcing art which had been completed during lockdown as a way to document the historical event.

The project exhibition Lockdown Covid-19 the Void was being planned for post lockdown to include pieces of work children had undertaken with Online Art Te Anau 2020. Anna Cannon, of Riverton, would play music composed during lockdown and Te Anau poet Tony Bridges, who had written a poem a day during the lockdown, would also perform.Running sport mediaAir Jordan Shoes