With theatres, galleries, stores, and restaurants shuttered to flatten the COVID-19 curve, the Isolation Diaries reach out to Vancouver’s creative sector to find out what people are watching, how they’re coping, and where they’re finding inspiration.
Serena Sun is a Vancouver-based singer-songwriter who fuses a soulful mix of bedroom pop and ambient soundscapes, with airy vocals and an emotion-driven sound. Her newest single, "Something More," created with local music producer and songwriter Nathan Chiu, is about seeking a greater purpose in life when it feels like things are falling apart. It will be available on all major streaming services and in stores on May 29. Other singles include "Idk How to Stop" and "Release Me".
No. 1 thing that’s getting you through
I think the number #1 thing getting me through all this is knowing that it’s temporary. I believe that experiences and people come into our lives to teach us lessons; for me, I’ve already learned that by slowing down, I can really focus on the overarching goals I have for myself, such as writing songs I’m proud of, fine-tuning my music production skills, and growing in my faith. This time has also taught me that I have so many people in my life to be thankful for, and that when things don't go according to plan, it's important to stay positive and be gentle with ourselves.
Specific things I do day-to-day to keep sane changes, but here are a few go-to's of mine! Journalling my thoughts when I start to feel restless, reading, going on short walks outside (wearing a face mask of course!), doing small art projects such as creating a mood board filled with my inspirations and dreams, listening to new music from my favourite artists, tuning in to online church sermons (my go-to is Vivid Church), learning new music production skills, and scheduling calls with my friends for mental health check-ins.
My recent obsession is Lennon Stella's newest album "Three. Two. One." Some other artist go-to's of mine include Sam Setton, Tiffany Day, and Maggie Rogers. I also have a playlist called “Soul Songs” that I constantly update to host my current favorites.
My boyfriend makes the most delicious Chicken Teriyaki! It's such a simple recipe, but it tastes incredible; I could seriously eat that every day and be satisfied.
Creative or learning outlet
I've been taking part in an eight-week online songwriting workshop orchestrated by celebrity vocal coach Dave Stroud. I have been meeting songwriters from all over the world and working with them to tackle a songwriting challenge each week. Dave's also invited some really cool industry professionals to help motivate us and give us tips on breaking into the music industry in different ways. Natasha Bedingfield was a guest one week and it was incredible hearing what she had to say about the industry!
On my own, I've been watching YouTube tutorials for music production to fine tune my skills. I love the walkthrough tutorial that Jeremy Zucker did for "lakehouse", one of the tracks on his latest album, "love is not dying".
I love listening to Oprah's Super Soul Sessions podcast! She brings on different thought-leaders and guests to talk about their viewpoints on finding deeper meaning and purpose in life.
On the flip-side, I also may or may not have binged all of “Too Hot To Handle” on Netflix. Ridiculously dumb but also hilariously entertaining reality TV is definitely on my list of guilty pleasures.
Haha, I have been trying to stay motivated, but can't say I've been the most active! I've been doing a few home workouts here and there, but what I've found to feel the best for my body has been making sure that I am eating well since I'm moving less than I'm used to! My boyfriend and I have been cooking many meals at home which has been a huge blessing.