Stephanie Gilman discovers the beauty in quiet, unobserved moments.
For this illustration, I use a photo of myself that was taken a couple of weeks after I was diagnosed with cancer and a few weeks before my double mastectomy and all of my treatment began. It looks to be just a simple selfie, like any other, but staring at the image brings forth a rush of emotions. Although the photo shows a smiling, healthy, happy appearance, on the inside I was a complete mess, filled with anxiety and dread over what was to come. As I sketch the photo, I pay close attention to the long hair, the lashes and the eyebrows—all things I have lost. Drawing this picture is an act of remembering and nostalgia for the “me” who existed in my pre-cancer life.