Portraits of Life Under the Coronavirus Lockdown


By Chloe Kingdom

This article is exclusive to the Online Edition 3 of VARSITY News.


Now, more than ever, we depend upon a variety of creative outlets to keep us entertained at home. From Ireland to Perth, these photographs from around the world show us that we are creating, moving our bodies, and caring for one another at a time when we feel most at a remove to remind us of our common pleasures. John Keating, the inspired, English teacher from Dead Poets Society, poignantly reminds us of our human need for fulfilment through creative expression, “And medicine, law, business, engineering, these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for.” By exploring our artistic and bodily impulses, we can transform the pain of this moment into something more beautiful, something that resembles hope—that thing which sings its message insistently to the beat of our heart.


Bag Design in Buckinghamshire

Image by Jack Edwards


Rebecca lives in Buckinghamshire and has been busy with a few creative projects during the United Kingdom’s nationwide lockdown. She was inspired to custom design a plain, cloth bag using a face doodle and abstract designs found online. She intends to use this as the perfect book bag for her studies when she returns to her university campus.


Baking Porridge Bread in Ireland

Image by Dr Jessica Groenewald


On one of her recent days off from work, Jessica baked porridge bread. She works in Ireland as an anaesthesiologist trainee in the ICU with Covid-19 patients. She has adjusted to life under lockdown by running two kilometres around her apartment, reading more, and staying in touch with friends and family around the world via social media. She has been staying positive despite the pressures she faces as a frontline worker in the pandemic.


Animal Rescue Care at Greyton Farm Animal Sanctuary

Image by Nicola Vernon


Life is still apace at Greyton Farm Animal Sanctuary in the Western Cape. Nicky Vernon, founder of the sanctuary, has her hands full feeding the 157 animals in her care. She manages the daily tasks with a team of five volunteers and eight additional crew members. Like many people on lockdown, Nicky continues to care for others which reflects a basic desire to love and be loved in a time of difficulty.


Planting a Vegetable Garden in Perth

Image by Isabelle Hughes


Stephanie and Löic have planted a new vegetable garden in their home in Perth. They chose to grow spring onion, basil, and lettuce. This was a sustainability project which they have been excited to start since their move to the city last year.


Reading on a Sunny Afternoon in Dublin

Image by Sebastiaan Van Poucke


Afternoon sunshine calls for reading new books on her apartment balcony! Tammy and Sebastiaan have adapted to their new life in Dublin under lockdown restrictions and amuse themselves by picking fluorescent, yellow tulips that grow wild by the wayside.


Yoga in Cape Town


On Megan’s first-time practising yoga, she has found it to be a rewarding experience – even more so than some other forms of workout She has progressed to the Intermediate and completes a full practice set to acoustic background music. This meditative practice has been taken up to stay grounded and active in a day without a set structure or routine.


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