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Finding lots of new and interesting fun stuff to do online has been, for me, an unexpected and welcome antidote to the global coronavirus anxiety-fest. But having filled my boots with digital exercise (much easier than the real thing), I started thinking... What other potential hobbies and projects have I been missing out on my whole life? Well if you're also looking for some home-based hobby inspiration, the Art UK Shop is here to help. We have loads of creative ideas for time-filling fun and food for the brain.

Tapered cement planters

Tapered cement planters

Now I don't know about anyone else, but as much as I love a bit of home improvement it somehow always seems to be bottom of the to-do list. But not anymore! If you didn't manage to panic-buy any paint (me neither) then how about giving your favourite room a spruce-up with some new accessories? Our new range of lovely planters look great on their own, or pop in some succulents and pair with a botanical print to bring a welcome touch of spring indoors. Arranging, rearranging and Instagramming your new display is bound to take a whole morning at least.

Framed botanical prints

Framed botanical prints

'Yellow Arum Lily...', 'An Orchid...' and 'Arum Lily...', watercolour on paper (?) by unknown artists

If self-improvement is more your thing, I highly recommend the brilliant book 365 Days of Art. Featuring an activity for every day of the year, this motivational journal encourages budding artists to nurture their creativity with imaginative and thoughtful tasks. And who knows, you may discover a hidden talent or new passion to take with you when normality resumes.

'365 Days of Art' by Lorna Scobie

'365 Days of Art' by Lorna Scobie

On the subject of books, when did you last have time to sit down with a thought-provoking and fascinating read? Yep, me too. Luckily there are lots of fabulous art books available on the Art UK Shop. My top pick is the brilliantly inspiring Think Like an Artist by Will Gompertz, followed closely by the modern classic Ways of Seeing. But whatever your preference, now is the perfect opportunity to discover a new interest – or hone your Mastermind specialist subject.

'Think Like an Artist' by Will Gompertz

'Think Like an Artist' by Will Gompertz

As any parent knows, keeping little ones entertained inside is challenging at the best of times, so we're going to need all the help we can get over the coming weeks! Art Workshops for Children by Hervé Tullet is a brilliant resource for newly promoted parent-teachers. It features step-by-step guides, practical tips and illustrated examples of 12 different creative workshops to try at home. The beautifully illustrated A History of Pictures for Children by David Hockney and Martin Gayford is also perfect for getting their art education off to a flying start, and it's an engaging read for adults and children alike.

'Art Workshops for Children' by Hervé Tullet

'Art Workshops for Children' by Hervé Tullet

We wish you all the best of luck with keeping yourselves and your families safe and entertained at home over the coming weeks. And when you're bored of YouTube tutorials, Twitter-trawling and box sets then give the Art UK Shop a browse. We hope you'll be suitably inspired! And if your fancy is sufficiently tickled to make a purchase, we're currently still open for business (while observing government advice on COVID-19 and adhering to all guidance and best practice) so you can stay busy while also providing very welcome and much-needed support to our Partner collections.

Alexandra Colton, Online Shop Officer at Art UK