Saori Murphy and Larry Busby had their work chosen for display outside the Straz Center as part of the Veterans Art Exhibit: Reintegration and Resilience.
“Being around the Straz and having people see that – there is a little bit of vulnerability that you kind of feel vulnerable that people see parts of yourselves,” said Murphy. “But at the same time I’m feeling really honored and respected in a way that people had come up and approached me along with other veterans.”
Murphy’s favorite piece of artwork currently on display is called A Choice. It began as a black and white exhibit that, over time, was filled with beautiful colors which represented her emotional transformation.
“What was my inspiration for making art? Suicide. I am a suicide survivor,” said Busby. “I started getting the help I need because I was suffering from severe depression and alcoholism. That started my journey.”
After seeking help for his depression, it was suggested that Busby choose a hobby. So, he picked up his camera 30 years after being a former Navy photographer’s aid.
“I’m in a zen-like state,” said. Busby. “I’m focused on what I’m doing and the rest of the world just disappears. It just melts away and I kind of like that. It’s meditation. It’s therapy. It’s cool.”
Both Busby and Murphy see the importance in seeking help and want others to do the same. Their artwork is on display for free at the Riverwalk in Downtown Tampa until March 15th.