A year in the art of lockdown: From her first days of isolation to the jab that set her free (and her father's tragic Covid death), how one amateur illustrator charted 12 months of pandemic hell

 From bad hair days to home workouts on Zoom, these little paintings depict life in lockdown.

Witty, satirical and tender and, at times, heartbreakingly poignant, they are the work of folk artist Sue Prince.

Sue, in her 60s, who lives on an organic beef farm in the Peak District with her husband Terry, has painted an image for every day of lockdowns one, two and three.

They begin on March 23 last year, the first day of lockdown. Two weeks ago, she completed No 180. It depicts her leaving a vaccination centre after receiving her first jab.

Her father Brian Norrie was in a care home as the pandemic began. Sadly, he died, aged 91, in December after catching Covid — she had at least been able to see him in his final days after a long separation.

Sue, who has two daughters and three grandchildren, says: ‘As an artist, my life is about the images around me and recording what’s going on. They got a phenomenal response on social media and were viewed thousands of times. Each painting takes about one to two hours, and it has helped me feel ok in these really weird times.’

Now Sue has turned her first 84 paintings, of lockdown one, into a book called The Isolation Chronicles, and also made some Christmas cards. A second book, covering the other 96 paintings is imminent. 


March 23, 2020: Lockdown is declared and Sue cancels appointments and farm cottage bookings

March 23, 2020: Lockdown is declared and Sue cancels appointments and farm cottage bookings

A tender hug: Seeing dad Brian in the care home before family visits and cuddles were outlawed

A tender hug: Seeing dad Brian in the care home before family visits and cuddles were outlawed

Nightmare: Sue is woken in the early hours by a raging temperature ¿ luckily not the dreaded Covid

Nightmare: Sue is woken in the early hours by a raging temperature — luckily not the dreaded Covid

Local heroes: They may be shut but the pubs try to keep the community spirit going with online quizzes

Local heroes: They may be shut but the pubs try to keep the community spirit going with online quizzes

Every little helps: Wear a mask, sanitise hands, keep your distance ¿ the new rules for a shopping trip

Every little helps: Wear a mask, sanitise hands, keep your distance — the new rules for a shopping trip

The quiet life: Like countless others, Sue fills her time with solitary walks and audio books

The quiet life: Like countless others, Sue fills her time with solitary walks and audio books

Here is the news... Daily updates from Professor Chris Whitty, the chief medical officer, give solace

Here is the news... Daily updates from Professor Chris Whitty, the chief medical officer, give solace

Lifting their spirits: Sue and Terry stick to the rules to have a socially distanced drink with neighbours

Lifting their spirits: Sue and Terry stick to the rules to have a socially distanced drink with neighbours

A brave new world of box sets: The couple¿s son-inlaw helps out by showing them how to stream TV

A brave new world of box sets: The couple’s son-inlaw helps out by showing them how to stream TV

Taming the lockdown locks: Sue tackles her unruly hair for the new way to socialise ¿ a Zoom video call

Taming the lockdown locks: Sue tackles her unruly hair for the new way to socialise — a Zoom video call

It all ends in tiers: As autumn hopes of beating Covid fade, Sue braces herself for a winter of new rules

It all ends in tiers: As autumn hopes of beating Covid fade, Sue braces herself for a winter of new rules

A testing experience: Sue endures the discomfort of a Covid test ¿ and discovers a nasty side-effect

A testing experience: Sue endures the discomfort of a Covid test — and discovers a nasty side-effect

While shepherds watched their screens by night: Carol concerts can go ahead ¿ albeit with a big difference

While shepherds watched their screens by night: Carol concerts can go ahead — albeit with a big difference

The final touch: Sue¿s PPE-protected hand holds her father¿s on December 20, the day he passed

The final touch: Sue’s PPE-protected hand holds her father’s on December 20, the day he passed

Zoom with a phew: Online exercise classes help to keep the nation fit and active ¿ if a little worn out

Zoom with a phew: Online exercise classes help to keep the nation fit and active — if a little worn out

Four steps to heaven: At last a light at the end of the tunnel as the roadmap out of lockdown is revealed

Four steps to heaven: At last a light at the end of the tunnel as the roadmap out of lockdown is revealed

And with one jab she was free: Sue¿s vaccinated and life starts to get back to normal ¿ we can only hope

And with one jab she was free: Sue’s vaccinated and life starts to get back to normal — we can only hope

A year in the art of lockdown: From her first days of isolation to the jab that set her free (and her father's tragic Covid death), how one amateur illustrator charted 12 months of pandemic hell A year in the art of lockdown: From her first days of isolation to the jab that set her free (and her father's tragic Covid death), how one amateur illustrator charted 12 months of pandemic hell Reviewed by STATION GOSSIP on 04:24 Rating: 5

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