Amber PaschkeAge Group (If you are a caregiver/family member please check Caregiver/Family Member)
Adult: 21 and overDescribe your art here - type of art, techniques and materials used, what your art represents and what it means to you.
This piece of graphic design work is for fictitious product designed to be part of the LIFE WTR brand. I used Adobe Illustrator to create the left and right brain designs and I used Adobe Photoshop to create the packaging. I also used Illustrator to create the typed description. I had to give my product a unique added ingredient that would benefit the user in some way, and I had to make my product benefit a cause. I chose to make my product benefit brain health (the project parameters didn’t necessitate a drink that was realistically possible to produce), so my water has added creatine which has been shown to improve brain health. However, if I knew of an ingredient that could shrink brain tumors, that would have been even better. The cause that my LIFE WTR benefits is St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital because that’s the place that finally got my brain tumors under control and saved my life.
I want to use my artistic abilities to help others who have suffered with brain tumors. Over the years I’ve created a lot of patient artwork for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital that they’ve used on many different things to raise funds. Please include your age, tumor type and date of diagnosis (patients & survivors only) and let us know how art has impacted your life.
I had my first Craniopharyngioma brain tumor when I was 9 years old and had my first craniotomy in June 1999. I had subsequent craniotomies in May 2000, December 2004, and August 2005. I also had Gamma Knife Radiosurgeries in September 2001 and November 2003, and I had a transsphenoidal surgery in July 2004. Finally, I had image-guided radiation at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in the summer of 2005, which finally got the tumors under control. My last craniotomy was during my time at St. Jude. I had started to lose most of my vision because the tumor was pressing on my optic nerve, so I had to have a craniotomy in the middle of my radiation to save my vision. Thankfully, I regained most of my vision after the surgery. Like many people with craniopharyngiomas, I have panhypopituitarism and hypothalamic obesity. I also have fibromyalgia, so I’m in constant pain in my neck and shoulders. I still get headaches a lot too.
I am 31 years old and will graduate next month with an associate degree in digital design with a 4.0 GPA. Art has always been my passion, so I’m excited to be able to have a career involving something I love. I also have a B.S. in mathematics, which has helped me develop excellent problem solving skills that will be crucial for my work as a designer.