My Friend the Sea: A breath meditation story for children

Story and video by Najia Bagi & Modern Art Oxford, artwork by Breathworks participant, Ella Shepard.  The project has been distributed widely across Kindness Wave and Modern Art Oxford’s social media channels and e-newsletters.


Activity video for children: 

You can learn more about this project by visitng the Kindness Wave Website


“How do we promote the importance of breath awareness and self care for young people?”

Breathworks was Modern Art Oxford’s digital participatory project by Lucy Sabin, which invited people to creatively respond to their breath online. Put to us by an audience member during one of our Breathworks live events, the timely question written above has been the inspiration behind a brand new creative challenge for children in collaboration with the charity, Oxfordshire Kindness Wave, created with artists Najia Bagi and Ella Shepard.

Shared for Children’s Mental Health Week (1-8 February 2021) as part of Wellbeing Season at Modern Art Oxford, My Friend the Sea is an imaginative and mindful 5 minute video story created by Najia Bagi, a yoga teacher and artist. Najia creates multi-sensory experiences to encourage self-reflection and social connection. Designed for children and their families or carers for during the coronavirus pandemic, this video uses children’s storytelling to unite traditional breath meditation practices with creative breath participation explored in the online project Breathworks. Imagining waves as breath, My Friend the Sea is inspired by, and features, the Breathworks contribution of artist Ella Shepard, whose painting, ‘Wake’ explores dream realities and the submerged subconscious to respond to breath.

The project was made possible with the generous support of TORCH as part of their Humanities Cultural Programme.

Read more about Breathworks here.

Discover more Oxfordshire Kindness Wave creative challenges on their website.

Blog posted 


Wellbeing and Children’s Mental Health Week blogs/resources: 

Children’s Mental Health resources:

13 Creative Wellbeing Ideas for All Ages:
Landscape of memories – Ella Shepard Artist Takeover:

blue green abstract image reminiscent of the top of water

Artwork by Ella Shepard