A pandemic through the eyes of a Nurse and Artist

Canadian Council for the Arts

Despite the uncertainty, challenges, and exhaustion nurses have faced in light of COVID-19, nurses have a strong sense of comradery, strength, perseverance and even humor. I intend to capture their lived experience through art. I welcome you to my series on Canadian’s nurses’ pandemic journey.

Where it started...
Outreach Nurses

Being an Outreach Nurse in the Vancouver DTES, I saw the opportunity to create a series that gives voice to Canadian’s nurses’ pandemic experience. 


At the onset of the pandemic, I recall having unforgettable moments of fear, uncertainty, shock, and self-reflection. These moments became ingrained in my emotional memory as pieces of a time like no other. From there, I was inspired to capture moments like these that front line nurses felt.

Shortly after, I applied for an grant through Canada Council for the Arts and began chatting with nurses of varying backgrounds and experiences across Canada.  From there, I gather core themes, meaningful quotes, lived stories that foster this paintings series.


I am an emerging Vancouver artist, and I hope that this series not only reflects the lived experience of nurses, but also gives them a voice and expression that you, as the viewer, can better understand what they have endured for us, along with their compassion, their dedication, their comradery, and even their fears and exhaustion.

I hope this series creates the opportunity to pause, reflect and feel. 

This painting series is dedicated to the frontline Canadian healthcare workers 

who dedicate their life to supporting and helping others.

Your impact is immeasurable. 


Outreach .jpg

Canada Council for the Arts

This opportunity is made possible with the funding and support of the Canada Council for Arts.  I am in gratitude for their measures to support Canadian artists' pursuit to create, dream, innovate and thereby, fostering our Canadian cultural, historical thread.


Completed Pieces 

Luke-warm coffee, 30x36_, 2021

"Luke-warm coffee," 2021

Oil on canvas, 30x36"

Summary: to be written

Stillness, 30x36_, 2021

"Stillness," 2021

Oil and pastel on canvas, 30x36"

Summary: to be written 

Future themes

For your curiosity, further themes related to collective and individual sacrifice, political movements that rose from the pandemic, and explore one of the most vulnerable groups multi-generational families. The paintings below are in process still, and are yet to be finalized. The series is expected to be completed and prepared for exhibition for early spring 2023. I will complete 7 large scale paintings, largest being 9x5ft of an ICU unit in Vancouver. Stay tuned for more paintings.  Follow the process IG: jcraig.va


ECMO Unit in Toronto Inspired piece 36x60"

In final stages

Pond Inlet 2cropped.jpg
Comradery 300.jpg

Outreach nurses inspired pieces, 40x30"

In final stages

Long Term care Cropped.jpg

Filipino nurse, mother, multigenerational household

40x30", in final stages

Student Nurse in Pond Inlet, Nunavut inspired piece, 36x60" In process, to be collaboration piece with student nurse


Vancouver General Hospital ICU inspired, 

approx 4.5x8.5' ft, in process