January 24, 2018 7:09 pm
Updated: January 24, 2018 7:50 pm

Canadian artists honour victims of Las Vegas shootings in Portraits Project

WATCH: It has been three months since 58 people were killed when a gunman opened fire on an outdoor concert in Las Vegas. As Global's Shelley Steeves reports tonight, a handful of artists from New Brunswick have been chosen to take part.


Three artists from New Brunswick will take part in a global project meant to honour the victims of the Las Vegas shooting.

It has been three months since 58 people were killed when a gunman opened fire on an outdoor concert in Las Vegas, and now 58 artists from across the globe have been invited to take part in the Las Vegas Portraits Project.

Five of the artists taking part in the Las Vegas Portraits Project are from Canada — and three of them are from Moncton, N.B.

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Andy Gill and Natalie Pineau said they are taking part in the project due to a sense of honour.

“It could have been me. I am 33 years old with four kids and I want to go travelling soon. It could have been any of us,” said Pineau.

“There is a lot of talent in Moncton,” said the project’s creator Ellen Abramo who lives in Nazareth, Penn. She said the portraits will eventually be given to the families of the victims following a memorial being held this October.

Gill says he was asked which of the victims he wanted to capture and he chose a 34-year-old mother of three, Hannah Ahlers. He said he was drawn in by her eyes.

“I was looking into her soul, and when I see her soul and I can see my subject’s soul, I know I can do the rest,” Gill said.

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It took him eight hours to complete the portrait and all the while, he was imagining the deep sense of loss that is surely still being felt by her family

“I was thinking of the kids. They are without a mother because somebody had a problem with life in general and took it out on 58 innocent people.”

Pineau chose to draw one of the Canadian victims, Jessica Klymchuk from Alberta.

“She loves kids and she has four of her own and is 34 years old and was just a bright person,” she said.

Both artists say the project was an emotional one but are hoping that through their art, they can somehow help the families who have lost so much, feel a sense of peace.

“I am hoping her family will have a sense of comfort knowing her face is there and she is smiling down on them,” said Gill.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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