Chris's amazing art

Patient Stories News

1 Feb 2022

At LOROS our patients are first and foremost individuals. Terminal disease can dehumanise people as they can feel reduced to a collection of symptoms to be treated. At LOROS we work hard to ensure our care helps people feel sure of who they are, their likes and dislikes, and how they want to be cared for.

Chris, 55, is on our Inpatient Ward and likes drawing pictures. He’s brilliant at it, and as he lies in his bed, it gives him a lot of enjoyment. His skills are even more amazing as he’s only been doing it for a couple of years.

He says: “When I was at school I didn’t do art. All I wanted was to mend cars. So that’s what I did. Then I moved on to mending caravans as that was paid better. After a few years I became a manager but left to be a driver for Asda. Then a few years ago I found out I had cancer and had to stop work.

“I started drawing when my wife Lorraine bought me an A4 pad and a tin of pencils. I was in the Glenfield Hospital and it was during the first lockdown so there was no visiting. I was so bored. She dropped off the art materials and suggested I try sketching. I drew Wistow park, a tree and some sheep. I think, because it was where I wanted to be, rather than in hospital.

“Since then I’ve started drawing a lot. I’ve even had some of my pictures displayed at a gallery in Leamington Spa, and I’ve sold some too.

“At Christmas I’d normally buy a big card and some tins of chocolates for the nurses but I knew this year it would be my last, so I’ve been giving away my pictures to the nurses instead. I wanted to give them something more personal to say thank you for all the help they’ve given me.

“I’ve also offered to draw their pets – a nurse asked me to draw her cat last week, and I’ve drawn a horse too.

“I’m actually colour blind and I can’t see well out of one of my eyes after having cancer so my wife is always correcting me. She loves birds and robins in particular so I’ve drawn a robin just for her.

“I came to LOROS from the hospital and the first thing I did was eat fish and chips. It was lovely. The quality of the food here is so good. Sometimes for breakfast I have an egg and bacon sandwich which is a real treat.

“Last week, I was treated to a special fish and chip dinner with my wife and daughter. The LOROS chef cooked the fish specially and my wife was served prosecco. The table, which was set out in a heart shape, was decorated with flowers. It was so lovely, it lit something inside me. I want to help people even more and I want to say thank you.

“People who work at LOROS – I can’t fault them. All the nurses, they’re lovely. In hospital I used to hear people shouting at the nurses. That was horrible. But here, the nurses pop in and say hello, always bright, always friendly and they always have time for you. What more could you want?

“A few days ago they wheeled my bed out into the courtyard, and I lay in the sunshine. It was fantastic. This place is the premiere.”

“I feel I’m leaving a legacy with my drawings. I want people to get the most out of the pictures. I rough it out, and spend a long time on the eyes until I’m happy with them, for example until the dog is looking at me the way it looks at its owner. If I know the pet I can draw them even better. I can capture their essence, their personality.

“My paintings come from the heart of me. If by looking at them it gives some joy then that’s what I set out to do.”

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