How are Artists Making it During Quarantine?


Abby Barajas

A lilac field painted during quarantine by Abby Barajas. Through the pandemic, students can still stay creative, safely in their own homes! Forbes says that Broadway’s shutdown may continue until May 2021, but could change afterwards and allow Broadway actors to go back to work. Creativity can play a big role in someone’s life, so pick up a pen and start something!

Abby Barajas, Journalist

Art is an expression of creative skill and imagination that students can find in themselves. At times, art can be a part of a student’s day to day life, but unfortunately our lives have been affected by the pandemic and quarantine that has been happening. The COVID-19 pandemic has had a huge effect on UP students, for instance the digital learning experience and not being able to leave home. There is a question that no one has seemed to ask yet. How have student artists been affected by this? 

Sophomore Elyssa Quinonez, who enjoys drawing and painting, believes that this quarantine has given her more motivation. When asked how her and her art were affected by quarantine, she stated, “I think it’s been a great break from everyday life and it has definitely given me more time for my art.” 

Eighth grader Serena In designs fashion outfits in her spare time, “[Quarantine] did give me more inspiration for more clothing designs, because I had time to keep up with trends.”

There are mainly seven different art forms that are commonly seen. Visual arts, which are best known as drawing and painting, is a form that people may be familiar with. Performing arts, which can be seen from the acting in movies, shows, or in dance. Literature is art in writing form, such as books, scripts, and stories. Music is vocal or instrumental sounds formed together to make an expression of emotion. Sculpture which can be clay, firing, stone or wood carving. Architecture is the art of designing buildings, but it can also be interior architecture, which is designing the inside of a building. Lastly there is film, which is directing, and the effects that can be seen in the cinema.

A writer from BookBaby Blog wrote an article about writers’ stories from quarantine, interviewing others for their opinions. Steven Spatz showed that the main reason Jen E. couldn’t write was because they couldn’t find the time. Now that this pandemic has started it has allowed them more free time to write their stories. While other writers like Alma A., find it difficult to get the inspiration they need. Mary H. thinks the opposite, they believe that quarantine has given them more inspiration for their stories.

Singers aren’t able to have concerts due to the increase in COVID-19 cases, but this doesn’t stop them from making music. Insider shows the song, “Six Feet Apart” written by singer Alec Benjamin, released on April 4, 2020, included lyrics references to social distancing. Singers such as Pitbull, OneRebuplic, A Great Big World, and many others, wrote songs that include lyrics about self-isolation, and quarantine to give their listeners hope. The Billboard released an article about the artist Billie Eilish working on a new song in quarantine, she talks about her opinion of quarantine, “You’re supposed to be missing this person and be missing people in general. I kind of have this feeling of like, I miss my really close friends, I miss people, of course I do, but I also at the same time  am liking the space.” An article on The Harvard Crimson listed 5 rap songs about COVID-19, like the song “Gold and Chrome” by Curren$y & Harry Fraud which talks about how he hopes that this pandemic will be over by the time his son grows older. Another song the article mentions is  “Lockdown (feat. Jay Rock)” by Anderson  .Paak which talks about quarantine, police brutality, and how it affects them.

Broadway performers work hard even when they aren’t able to perform, making it nearly impossible for them to move forward in their career. Broadway performer Michael James Scott, who played the Genie in ‘Aladdin’, in Los Angeles was interviewed by The Cut and asked, ‘What’s it like to not be acting?’ He replied with, “It feels like I’m not an actor right now, I’m just a person. And to put the emergency brake on, the whiplash is felt. Between the hours of five and seven, my body still goes into show mode. I have a hard time eating without feeling like I need to eat small to do a show. That can lead to small fits of sadness.” 

Artistic places like museums are being threatened to close down, due to the low number of people being able to go. The article on The Architect’s Newspaper  says that The Los Angeles County Museum of Art chose to continue the construction of their site even through quarantine. Museums are a way for visual artists to showcase their works, and unfortunately, artists aren’t able to do this due to quarantine. Sculptors haven’t been able to showcase their work the same way that visual artists did in museums. Even so, visual artists and sculptors have been working at home to create their artwork and even give classes to support themselves. 

The article, ‘How the Coronavirus Will Reshape Architecture’ states that it is as difficult for architects as it is for anyone with a career. Architects come up with new designs for buildings, while the interior architects help to design inside the building. Since everyone stays in their house being productive with their own work it makes it difficult for architects to have jobs for them.

In her Backstage article, Lisa London, a casting director, explains that directors and actors are having a hard time during the COVID-19 pandemic, but quarantine has also given artists time and inspiration to work on their art. She provides ways to stay creative even through quarantine, which would be useful at the time.

Quarantine has shaped art in ways nothing else could, there is no doubt that even after quarantine art might still change. Marc Spiegler, global director from the Art Basel talks about art after quarantine in an article by The Art Newspaper, he says, “We can expect a vaccine by the middle of next year … we know that people are longing to be able to see art in person again. At the same time, digitalisation will not go away.” He believes that digital art will stay as it has become normal and also believes that more “in-person” art will come. 

In the article, ‘What Will Happen to the Novel After This’ Emily Temple talks about how literature and many novels may be written about the pandemic, maybe even plays and movies may be written around the theme of quarantine. 

On how social distancing has affected his music class, Instrumental music and Jazz music teacher Mr. Magee from University Preparatory says, “Quarantine and distance learning has made it so the only people [the students] can hear is me. Most of what we do in the class is them listening to me now and then working on instruments on their own as opposed to them coming together and playing together.” He explains that this makes it harder for the students to learn music. Art is a big part of life all together and quarantine has affected it greatly. Mr. Magee’s opinion about this is, “that art is an important part of a student’s life. Not only does it help them to express themselves but it also helps to build confidence in other areas.”

Art is an expression of human creative skill and imagination, taking the time to show your creativity through art may help develop confidence in some students. On the website, Art Net, it shows that pieces of art have existed even 40 thousands years ago, showing that art is a part of humanity. Even if art seems like something small, the truth is, it plays a big role in our society today and an even bigger role in this pandemic.