By transforming an ordinary combat helmet into a work of art, NSCAD student Heather DiPinto joined 57 other artists from across the country in a unique initiative to support Canadian military families.
Created as part of the “Artists for Families” program, the one-of-a-kind helmets were auctioned off at the recent True Patriot Love Foundation
Tribute Dinner in Toronto, which raised more than $2 million for the Military Families Fund.
In creating her work, entitled Falling in Love
, Heather asked herself, what would she miss most about Canada if she had to go away? And how could she make that experience relevant to others? “The first part of the inspiration came from the new quarter with its swirly lines; the second part was a beautiful fall day, which reminded me of home and going for walks with family and friends, enjoying the colours and the sun,” explains Heather. “I used actual maple leaves to paint with; some were used to create pattern and others were used to create wispy outlines. The swirls created the mood of warm and cool air blowing about.”
“I decided to participate because of the good intentions of the organization. I thought that this event would go over well and be an excellent chance to help others and give some exposure to my work at the same time,” adds Heather. “As an artist, I feel it is our duty and our responsibility to help others whenever we can."
“I think it's easy for people to forget that there are still men and women out there putting their lives on the line for us.”
The Military Families Fund is designed to assist military families with unforeseen and often urgent needs resulting from conditions of service, including rehabilitation after injury, educational support for children with special needs on remote bases, financial assistance in the case of injury or death, and urgent and extraordinary financial demands where the ability to provide family necessities is at risk.
Heather is currently working on a piece for a Habitat for Humanity fundraiser next February.
to take a look at all the "Artists for Families" helmets, including Heather's.