Lockdown wasn't what artist Keziah Craven expected it to be.
While COVID-19 may have derailed her plans to begin with - with social restrictions cancelling her first exhibition since graduating from Australian National University - Craven said what eventuated this year wouldn't have happened without lockdown.
The Canberra artist is one of the lucky ones to emerge out of COVID-19 better off.
The six weeks at home, without having to travel between her children's school and her retail job, meant Craven could spend the majority of her time creating.
"It really helped my creative activity flourish," Craven said.
"I did 44 drawings, as well as making six sculptures, which normally I wouldn't do quite that much in that shorter time but just having that time and being able to get in that zone and stay in that zone was helpful."
The unprecedented amount of completed work also had a knock-on effect. Craven needed somewhere to exhibit so started reaching out to galleries in hopes of an exhibition.
The result was four exhibitions booked in for 2021- three in Canberra and one in Sydney - at galleries she wouldn't have approached if her 2020 exhibition wasn't cancelled.
Furthermore, the pieces Craven created this year have links to COVID, with the impacts of the virus one of two topics the artist focused on in her work.
"I used parts of my body, an arm or a leg or foot and then create the shadows in my drawings," Craven said.
"I was looking at the fact we're constantly with ourselves and that there's no escaping ourselves, and just looking at ways of abstracting or distorting those forms by using the shadow, and then using lines and circles to fill in the spaces."
The other topic - while a continuation of some of Craven's work completed while at ANU - also had links to COVID.
"I was looking at the effects of domestic violence. How that has such an impact in our community but especially this year because people have been isolated at home or so they're not able to escape as they'd normally be able to," she said.
One of the artist's previous works included an email from a social worker discussing the artist's own experience with domestic violence. While it was originally included in an exhibition last year to give context to the artist's overall work, this year saw the piece published in a Belgium publisher to be included in What the Fire Sees, a multi-author book of poetry, philosophy and social critique.
While COVID has proved to be a beneficial time for Craven and her art career, other artists have not been so lucky.
"There have been extra grants available, but the government has been quite selective as to who gets them," Craven said.
"I know a few of my other friends have flourished and had more success, but then I've seen others who have had everything cancelled. A lot of musicians had all of their gigs cancelled so it's impacted everyone in a lot of different ways.
"It depends what happens now within the new ACT Government as to what funds get put back into the arts."
- This article is part of the Displaced Artists Project. The Canberra Times has reached out to artists in different fields to see how COVID-19 has impacted them.