Sarah Wartell and Judy Abplanalp

Judy Abplanalp Art
“Storm Receding - Sunlight Beckons”
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The Story
Sarah Wartell
Sarah Wartell
Golden, CO
Social Media: @eatyogaexplore (IG)
Twist on Cancer: On average, one out of 20 individuals are impacted by colon cancer. It is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths. These statistics aren’t meant to frighten you - but they do mean to serve as a wakeup call of how common this disease really is. The good news is because of research, there are over a million survivors alive in the U.S. presently. In my particular case, being young, thin framed, with perfect lab results and in my early 40s didn’t help my doctors reach a diagnosis in a timely fashion. Procedures like colonoscopies don’t often get ordered unless you are 45. That investigative surgery saved my life by finding the mass. Symptoms alone can’t diagnose cancer, even as horrible as they are. Consult with your physician if you are exhibiting any and keep advocating for yourself. You know your body best, listen to what your guts says and take action. It could save your life!
Judy Abplanalp
Judy Abplanalp
“Storm Receding - Sunlight Beckons”
37.75” x 25.50” x 1”
Artist Statement:
I first learned about Brushes with Cancer from my son, who participated as an Artist in last year’s program. At the time I decided to apply, we were all in the midst of the pandemic. My usual challenges, supplied by piano groups and oil painting classes, had been cut off, and I was more open to the very challenging opportunity offered by Brushes with Cancer than I would have been under other circumstances. I felt I could combine my skills as a psychologist with the chance to get to know and perhaps be helpful to someone dealing with cancer.

Sarah, my Inspiration, and I, visited a number of times via Facetime, and it was during those conversations that I learned about her background, her interests and her many talents. That was also how I learned about her experience with cancer and what it has meant to her.

I made an initial attempt in a drawing to combine a large number of ideas into what I imagined would be my eventual painting. However, despite multiple attempts, there was just too much material. So, I decided I would focus on the environment Sarah had described as being central to her life — water and mountains. The painting depicts a scene around Lake Tahoe, one of Sarah’s favorite places. The lightning storm is ending; the sunbeams are drawing the boat (containing Sarah) to the light, which represents a bright future.

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