Letters from Natasha: June 2020
Hello, everyone! Slightly exhausted, we are slowly crawling out of the never-ending lockdown. It is a pity we were taught very little about mental health and wellbeing back in schools, universities. For me, manual creative work and craft is a very calming process. I apply this simple antistress technique every day.
On a positive note, the present uncertain, unpredictable situation forces people to be more creative, brave, get involved in new projects. Recently, I designed and created several leather masks as wall decorations. This unusual, unexpected direction of my leathercraft triggered my participation in an engaging live streaming Instagram "embrace your creativity" interview with a leather craftsman and designer Yusuf Osman @yussico. Overall, live streams and webinars are becoming a common fascinating and educational trend. I took part in a webinar for small fashion business regarding the topic of survival in these difficult times. Very interesting proposals from emerging online platforms aimed at promoting independent artists and craftsmen have started to come. As a result, I am busy preparing various photo and video materials regarding my products and craft processes, drafting outlines for online workshops and interviews.
Additionally, social media groups and communities of craftsmen and artisans are full of fun creative challenges to cheer up readers and entertain the participants. For example, one online community is inviting members to make leather microbags. In a different leathercrafters' group the challenge is to make a contemporary 5-slot cardholder using different leathers.
These endeavours and tasks require lots of time. All of it is done against a hectic background of childcare, home-schooling, endless cooking and cleaning. So the days fly by very quickly. While I have been writing this post, a notification appeared that possibly my art studios are reopening from June 15. Hopefully, it will happen. The main thing is not to run out of strength, and so I keep swimming on!