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This is one in a series of interviews with our customers to see how they are adapting to the COVID-19 world.

David Ridgway lives in Bellingham, WA and has been a customer for over 20 years. Whether painting plein aire or in his studio, his images of the hills, valleys, boats, and houses of the San Juan's and Skagit counties are an appreciative expression of the beauty of the Pacific Northwest.

This is his #artinthetimeofcorona story.

 

October on 18th, 12x16”, oil on museum board
October on 18th, 12x16”, oil on museum board

How was Bellingham affected by the COVID-19 virus? How have you been affected personally?

Washington State went into lockdown on March 23rd closing all non-essential businesses. I am fortunate to have my studio in the same building as our residence so have continued to paint. My wife and I stopped all non-essential travel and shopping. We continue to do so with the exception of occasional Starbucks drive-thru and local coffee shop visits wearing masks. Phase 2 will likely start soon, but we are reluctant to join the reopening at our age. One of my galleries and I have postponed a show scheduled for July.

Do you have a daily routine that keeps you grounded these days? 

I get up in the morning have breakfast and check in with the outside world. It’s then time to begin caring for our 19 year old cat Charlie. After lunch, I head for my studio and put in a few hours with the brush. Coffee at 4 and then back to work til 7. After dinner its social media, Rachel Maddow, a mystery or comedy on cable. Feed Charlie again, then reading for a few hours before sleep.

Are you reading, cooking, streaming, or doing any activity that is helping you cope?

I do a Yoga class and coffee group via Zoom every week and have caught up with out of state and international friends using Zoom, What’s App, Facebook, Instagram and phone calls. Nostalgia, comfort food, popcorn, and Turner Classic Movies figure prominently.

With museums and galleries closed are you seeing a shift to the internet for viewing/selling art?  How is this affecting you?

I have enjoyed the online galleries that have opened as well as other creative media: music, dance, poetry, etc. A few online sales individually and through galleries. One is offering visits by appointment with masks and social distancing. I put together customized web galleries to fit client’s criteria and that has worked well.

Do you see any positive changes for artists in a post pandemic world?

This seems a great opportunity to step back and do some introspection, evaluation, and jump into creative endeavors long postponed or to revisit older concepts and media. Plus many of us will know how to cut our own hair when this is over!