The Coronavirus pandemic and the subsequent lockdown to contain the virus, have adversely impacted human life. However, some are taking this confinement in their stride and utilising this time at home, to hone their creative side. Housing.com News spoke to some celebrities, to see how they are spending their time.
One has to come to peace with what is happening all around us and not be overwhelmed with anxiety. We have to be positive and embrace the change. It is time to reboot oneself. I chant ‘Om’ daily and also stay physically active by exercising, especially by playing cricket on my terrace. Since one has to be at home all the time, I have chalked-out a daily schedule that I follow to hone my skills of playing the piano, cooking and editing.
I have directed an eight-minute short film titled ‘Urban Incarceration’ from my hand phone. The message conveyed by this film, is that ‘we are all in this together’ and ‘no one is impenetrable’. Do not let your paranoia get the better of you and do not let this pandemic affect your mental wellbeing. I, along with two of my friends, Rithvik Dhanjani and Jitendra Joshi, also made ‘Jo Fo Mo’, an animated comic series, for which I have given the voice-over and even the dubbing on the phone. We will be releasing one episode every week. We plan to raise money through it for charity. Making short films is therapeutic and I find it extremely relaxing.
I also spend time with my father and at times cook some exotic dishes, like chicken paprika and paneer makhani, by taking recipes from my mother via video-call as my mother is currently stuck in Poland, due to the lockdown.
The lockdown has given me a lot of ‘me time’ and I have taken up writing after almost 10 years. In 2009, when I was struggling and my mother passed away, I had started writing. Now, I have taken it up again. I have written a poem on the plight of migrant workers, titled ‘Bas chal raha hai’, which I have shared with my voice-over and a video. I have also written various short stories.
This pandemic has taught us to value our families, our homes and be less materialistic in life. I am able to spend a lot of time at home, especially with my father, which, due to shooting, I could not do earlier. I am leading a healthy lifestyle, confined at home. I am rediscovering myself, as I was very busy with work over the last few years. A disciplined routine matters, even during the lockdown, when one is at home and I enjoy watching the sunrise and sunset from my balcony. Today, thanks to digital media, one can showcase one’s talent easily and reach out to the audience.
Singer and composer
While these are tough times for all, we are all trying to manage and deal with it in the best way we can. Artistic creativity can never be stopped. Today, when social distancing is the need of the hour and there are few distractions, I find solace in music, as it gives me positive energy. One can be creative while staying at home and I am spending my time composing new music and doing riyaaz every day. These are the times when I am able to reflect and connect with my inner self, away from the hustle and bustle of travelling.
My brother Sulaiman and I released a new single ‘Maalik Mere’ on the occasion of Eid. Besides the two of us, Vipul Mehta, Raj Pandit and Salman Ali have all lent their voices to this song and the soothing melody is by Rahul Sharma on the santoor. We used audio software that helped us to connect directly to the main computer. We recorded, shot and produced from our respective homes. I am also doing live music shows from home. Twenty years ago, Sulaiman and I worked on an album called Bhoomi and now, we are coming out with Bhoomi 2020, which we will release, once things are a bit normal.
Digital technology and social media have helped artists today, not only to compose, create music and entertain people but to reach out to the audience even during the lockdown. Also, technology is helping us to reach out to the folk artists in Rajasthan, whom we are trying to help by sending aid.
Actress, columnist and writer
While we are at home due to the lockdown, I feel it is most important to accept the situation. It is a time for self-reflection. I am lucky to be with my family, especially my little nephew and niece.
I unwind by listening to music and also by cooking. I take it easy each day. My hobby of writing gives me the perfect platform to express my feelings. It takes away all my worries. During the lockdown I also wrote a poem, titled ‘Jab Sab Theek Hoga Na’. The poem highlights the little things that have changed in our lives during the pandemic, the experience of being at home, watching birds sing, cleaning the house, etc.
Once the lockdown is lifted, we must continue to be humble. I am also working on my second book and devote a few hours to writing, every day. There are days when I write for an hour or at times for five hours. I just shot an ad film for an oil brand, from home. I did my makeup, set up the props, cooked and shot the video. Technology has definitely made it easier to connect with friends and it is reassuring.
The lockdown has surely brought forth a lot of anxiety but one must always remember that we are all in it together. If one feels unable to deal with the stress, talk to family, friends or take professional help. Taking care of your mental wellbeing is most important.
I have become more productive during the lockdown. I started a YouTube channel ‘Debina decodes’ two years ago, on which I used to upload videos once a week. Now due to the lockdown, I upload almost four videos a week. I spend a day planning the subject of the shoot and preparing for it. I have lights and cameras at home, so it is easier for me to shoot. I shoot different videos on skin and hair care, exercise, DIY for men during quarantine, cooking and fun games like Pictionary. My husband Gurmeet is also a part of the videos, sometimes.
Along with my husband I spend time reading, creating content on social media and I also exercise and meditate. It is important to stay busy and do something constructive and creative, as this lockdown is an ideal time, to refresh one’s mind, body and soul.