This piece is a response to the psychological effects of wearing a mask. I’ve seen the media and local signs depicting mask-wearing as something foreboding and anxiety-inducing, embracing the heaviness of this “new normal” in a global pandemic. I wanted to create a painting that instead portrayed mask-wearing as not only a normal occurrence, but something that could be beautiful and engaging. In the fluidity of our cultural attitudes towards the pandemic, seeing mask-wearing as a discipline of beauty, care for neighbors, and health can encourage more people to take part. Additionally, it’s important to celebrate the diversity of those around us and portray the beauty of our neighbors.