15 minutes of digital peace

A calming pastel illustration insinuating flowers grass and blue sky

Artist, illustrator and a member of our 2019 class of 27 under 27s, Toronto-based Tabban Soleimani has used this time at home to create a digital space for mindfulness

As told to Jess Kelham-Hohler    Above image courtesy of Tabban Soleimani    Monday 14 September, 2020    Short read

2020 has been the year that our fixation with screens went into overdrive. With most of us working from home and our social connection restricted to video calls, we’ve never been more reliant on technology. All that digital noise can be overwhelming, as Toronto member Tabban Soleimani found. The issue prompted the artist and illustrator to turn her skills to digital good, leading to the creation of Take 15. The virtual break room uses nature’s soundtrack and soothing illustrations to create an online experience that makes space for a fixed 15-minute time-out. 

Experience Take 15 here.

What prompted you to create Take 15?
‘Lockdown made me hyper-aware of my own extreme content consumption and time online. The idea was quite literal – open a window that actually helps boost my mental and emotional state.’

Tell us about the process of designing it.
‘I’ve been curious about my cognitive structure, so a lot of research went into looking at the brain and our connection with nature in the digital age. We spend more than 10 hours online and maybe 30 minutes outside (if that). Nature deficiency is very real for many of us living in urban areas. 

‘Sound vibrations have been helpful to my healing journey, and so I really wanted to extend and offer a small corner of the internet dedicated to cognitive restoration. The digital space is known to be mentally draining and overwhelming. I wanted to create somewhere where we can be mindful of our energy.’

What’s been some of the feedback you’ve received?
‘A friend said to me, “It feels like I’m on a hill with my eyes closed”. I love the image that gave me.’

Self-care has been at the forefront recently – why in particular did you want to approach it via the internet?
‘Wellness accessibility is important to me and not talked about enough. It felt right to utilise the internet as a tool – virtual healing, if you will. No additional cost required, just 15 minutes of your time.’
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