• Ruth Towell

Lockdown Reflections - Harry

As we are standing on the turning point of the lockdown being eased in the UK, I decided to embark on a new portrait project. Capturing this moment in time, with reflections from individuals about this season and thoughts about how a post-lockdown world might look.

Each portrait is a window into an individual's life, shot through the window of their home capturing the invisible separation that lockdown brings.

This is Harry, have a read of his story:

"I’m a Compliance Officer for an insurance broker, and also a part-time record label owner and music producer. My lockdown has been shared with my wife, Beth and our 20-month old daughter Isla.

I’ve been furloughed from work since the 1st of April. The main change has obviously been an increase in time available to be with my family, get things done and to work on music projects. The way I’ve seen this is that I have an unimaginable opportunity to be a househusband, stay at home Dad and full-time musician, three things I never thought I’d be able to say! I’ll never forget this time I’ve spent looking after Isla. She’s too young to know any different and plays a big part in keeping the household happy.

I’ve found I’ve been able to really focus on my music and be a bit more thorough in my approach. Right at the beginning of lockdown I recorded my own album to document my experience. I’ve also made music to raise money for charities (the WHO and Great Ormond Street). I’ve even started making some DJ mixes again which I’ve really enjoyed.

When I became unable to make and sell CDs due to the local post office closure, I had the idea of a series called Home Diaries. This is an invitation to artists and musicians to create an album documenting their experiences of the pandemic. As well as the music, I asked each artist to send two photos from their home and answer some questions such as about their situation and how their album was made. The line-up is international and will be 30 editions once the series is complete. I’ve got artists from countries such as the USA, Italy, Spain, Iran and the UK.

I think the landscape of business which in turn effects many lives, will change. There will be new ways of thinking and working and probably quite a lot of social distancing still for quite some time. Inevitably, some people will suffer, so I don’t want to write optimistically that everything will work out in the end! As that might not be the case for everyone.

I do think there has to be some positives to come from this. It’s an experience we’ve all shared, although everyone’s circumstances will be different. I hope that we can appreciate each other and realise the true value of our time and our jobs and/or livelihoods too."

You can have a listen to Harry's Home Diaries album on Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/album/1n3gOqBx1CNIHeu4OHpgBV?si=i7vlIopOTDKewKkhTmMl-g or take a look at the wider project here: http://whitelabrecs.bandcamp.com/

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© 2020 Ruth Towell