ST. ANDREWS, N.B. -- The Kingsbrae International Residence for the Arts (KIRA) in St. Andrew's, N.B., has called upon alumni to help inspire people to be creative during the COVID-19 pandemic.

At this time of year, KIRA traditionally welcomes artists from around the world. However, because of restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, they were unable to do so this year.

Geoff Slater is the art director at KIRA. He says the organization was forced to find a creative solution to the problem.

"We decided to engage our over 60 alumni and come up with something that they could do to help everybody at home," says Slater.

The result is a collaboration with artists from around the world, who have done a residency at Kira, to provide online art tutorials.

"Kira wants to contribute to our local community … when we had the idea that maybe we can't do that this year, we have to come up with something else for them," says Masha Schenkel, the co-ordinator of KIRA’s art program.

The tutorials are uploaded twice a week. They are meant to be quick and easy to follow so that art enthusiasts of all levels can do them while at home.

"We just want to make sure that people feel the urge to get creative, because once you get creative time just flies by, or at least that happens in my experience," says Schenkel.

The videos also provide a glimpse into life during the pandemic in other parts of the world.

"Their situations are no different from ours and I think that connectedness that we all have globally in this crisis makes us feel a little less helpless that we are all in this together," says Slater.