Creative Expression in the Virtual World

Finding Creative Ways to Connect in Community

This page includes resources to provide community members with opportunities to move, learn, reflect, create, and more in community together in unique ways.

Throughout this past year, it has at times felt like creative expression was lost to the virtual, quarantined world -- however, we know it is not. We know it is critical to sharing in community with others as we make it through. Creative expression is an umbrella term that includes a variety of different activities using numerous different mediums and forms. These can include theater, drama, music, dance, drawing, painting, murals, spoken word, poetry, and much more! In this virtual world, creative expression could include an online cooking classes, trying to new recipes with friends or family members over Zoom, joining a virtual book club, paint-and-sip events, and others.

Creating Connections tells us to mix it up and don't limit yourself, embrace your inner creative, and and get inspired from others!  When healthy creative outlets are integrated, individuals can experience less stress, strengthen cognitive abilities, and impact their mood positively. With this in mind, C+V understands that as each individual cares for themselves, they care for the community. Check out below for ways to practice creative expression with others to help you through these times and beyond.

*Please note, this list is a starting point for learning more about this topic. C+V does not endorse any specific product, service, or platform, and we cannot guarantee the accuracy of information provided. Additionally, if you wish to see the YouTube videos in full-screen with captions, select "YouTube" on the video, and it will lead you to the site.

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"Many of us remember making art as small children, losing ourselves, immersed in a sea of paints, crayons, construction paper, brown paper bags and Popsicle sticks. We were connected to that drive to communicate our inner selves to the world. 
That communication has intrinsic value. It connects us to others, to a community. It allows us to have agency in that community by sharing a story and making ourselves visible."
- Abigail Simms, Joyful Heart Foundation

 
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How can we take part in creative expression in a virtual world?

Community creative expression ideas

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    Message or call some friends, family, or classmates and find a new recipe you have been wanting to try. Then set up your computer or phone at home and do your best impression of a cooking show! Plus you get a delicious meal or treat at the end of it.

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    Schedule a writing block with others - set aside a specific block of time that is built into your calendar and is only for writing. It will be great to connect with others and to find time to write if you are feeling unmotivated in the virtual world.

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    Work with a fellow group of actors to perform an online scripted performance - allowing friends or family to watch the final product can not only give you practice but give you time on the "big screen" in front of others.

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    Practice new drawing or painting techniques with fellow artists - you can take images and share with each other or join via Zoom to draw or paint at the same time. Pair it with a tasty beverage for your own sip-and-paint!

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    Perform a new song, either singing or playing, with a group of fellow musicians. There are video examples of how people are even finding ways to harmonize and perform together over video.

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    Hold a weekly dance party to get moving, get reenergized, and connect with some friends or colleagues.

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    Grab things from around the house, and have fun with family making something - this could be a popsicle stick tower, a water color piece, a fort from a cardboard box, or more! Let your creative energy flow and if you want, don't even have a goal in mind.

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    Ask a local business if they would want a mural on the wall - this could attract business to a local place and give you a chance to get creative.

Virtual creative expression in action!

C+V Community Talks: Wellness & Creativity: Exploring Community Together

Drawing & Painting - The Virtual Instructor: Pencil Techniques

NExT Series: Bringing Creative Expressions Into Your Virtual Learning Spaces

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Connecting with fellow community members

Check out Crimson Connect activities and groups and the DU Calendar!

Numerous organizations exist on campus that host events centered on cooking and food, art, writing, and much more. Search Crimson Connect and the DU Calendar for groups and upcoming events, especially as people make virtual and hybrid options available.

 

Additional Resources

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    Campus Life Arts & Activities

    At DU, you can create a path that perfectly suits your lifestyle and interests well beyond the classroom. Choose from numerous activities and events that will entertain, enrich and challenge you.

    Visit Web Page

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    DU Athletics & Recreation: Virtual Recreation Portal

    Even though we’re temporarily unable to enjoy these activities at the Ritchie Center together, we encourage you to stay active with us virtually! Join our in-house experts, community partners and industry leaders for a diverse set of programs and resources for all ages and abilities.

    Check out the nutrition section for recipe ideas for your next online recipe try-out! 

    Visit the Portal

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    Cultural Center and Spiritual Life’s Book Shelf

    Looking to expand on your understanding of community and values through a book? Visit The Cultural Center and Spiritual Life’s Book Shelf for some reviews and recommendations. Set up an online book club with one of these powerful reads!

    Visit Web Page

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    College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

    Visit here to learn more about CAHSS, including their programs, class offerings, activities, events, and more!

    Visit Site

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    Visit Denver: Denver Arts & Culture

    Check out this City of Denver page to learn about community opportunities to join others in creative expression and get inspired!

    Visit Site

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    Skillshare 

    Explore your creativity. Join Skillshare to watch, play, learn, make, and discover. Check out their free class options!

    Visit Website

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    Reedsby Blog: 15 of the Best Online Writing Communities for Aspiring Authors

    Writing communities are the perfect place to find answers to your writing questions and to discuss the ins and outs of the writing life with people who actually understand what you’re talking about. Check this link out for 15 online writing communities!

    Visit List

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