• Naseem Syed

‘Hold’ by Éva Ivicz


I am 21, I study Creative and Therapeutic Arts on USW, and I work as a support worker. I am from Hungary, my family and most of my friends still live there, but luckily I was able to see them in August when the restrictions were lifted a little bit.

Has lockdown changed you? How? Why?

The lockdown came right after my 3,5 year relationship ended - I couldn't go out and distract myself, but that has given me a lot of time to think, create and self-reflect, and to realize what I want and what's important for me in life. That's when I decided to stay in the UK and apply to university. It gave me a lot of struggles and challenges as well, but I think that helped me get stronger and to grow as a person.

What made you smile or brought you joy in lockdown? Can you explain it?

With my previous workplace - an 11 month volunteering experience in England - when lockdown started, I was working on a farm. March/april is lambing season - spending a lot of time with those little creatures and caring for them has brought me a lot of joy.

Have you changed since lockdown? Tell me why.

Since lockdown, I have become more independent and resilient. I still struggle a lot - I moved to Wales in August, so once again the new environment is a big challenge, but I'm settling in alright.

What is the story behind your hand art?

The inspiration behind my art is the fact that I miss physical connection - when I feel down, hugs and touches are a great source of comfort for me. Now that there is no family and close friends around me, and as a general rule we are not allowed to be within 2 metres of each other, I miss this kind of support. I used blue acrylic paint to paint on my palm and then left prints with it on my face and shoulder symbolizing imprints/memories of being touched. The blue colour symbolizes the cold feeling of missing these, as I write in my poem as well. Writing has always helped me a lot to cope with my emotions, too.

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