Janell Hill is a local artist who during her time stay at home used her time to create powerful artwork.
This piece is called “The Voice Behind the Mask”. On Friday, April 17th Janell was kind enough to share her talent and the process behind creating this composition.
As a dental hygienist, my role is not essential. What can I do during this time? I have been quarantined since March 17, and during this time, I have been given an opportunity to produce art and make people smile. I follow the Jealous art Curator on Instagram who created the hashtag, #30dayartquarantine which can be used as a platform to share your creations and artistic expression and encourages artists and crafters to create for 30 days. When I discovered this challenge, I was thrilled to partake in it. I painted Audrey Hepburn with a hat of toilet paper and Twinkies lassoing the Corona Virus. I have a funny one of The Charmin Bear on the cover of Forbes Magazine that I titled “The Charmin Bear Market.” Art is a therapeutic outlet for me. Now that I’m nearly 30 days into this challenge, my goal is to inspire and produce positivity. If I can make someone smile, it’s a good day.
My husband and I have 3 sons, 2 are in elementary school. I try to wait to paint until there is down time or when the boys go to bed. Every night since I have been observing the quarantine, I have stayed up until 2 AM to paint. My cousin, Chelsea and I were visiting on Marco Polo one evening. She was crying, telling me the little hospital she worked at had their first exposure to COVID 19, and that several of the nurses she worked with tested positive. As a labor and Delivery nurse, she is handling 2 lives. She worried about her patients, and the what ifs: What if I am a carrier, what if I give this to my patient, What if I bring this home, what if I bring this to the grocery store. About the same time, I had read “Not all heroes wear capes”, and it was a picture of a nurse in a blue mask. That was the idea. When I asked Chelsea if she wanted to participate, she suggested including images of everyone the healthcare provider serves. I decided let’s write that on the wall! “The Voice Behind The Mask.” I created this collection of 13 health care providers to honor my friends and family. I have 13 individuals: ICU, Floor, labor and delivery, ER, paramedic, RT. Each person has submitted a handwritten or typed message or story of their experience.
They continue to serve despite their fears of “what if.”
I’m very proud of this composition. I’m proud of my friends and family. I am grateful for so many things right now. If you are working front line, I hope this inspires you to keep going. If you are worried about being the one isolated in a room, there are amazing people who will love you and be there for you. If you are the person being treated, you are truly cared for.