Art with a Heart – 2014 JDRF Delaware Youth Ambassador Art Project

Local Artist, Sherry Brilliant, Opens Studio to JDRF Youth Ambassadors to Create Painting for the Annual Hope Ball

Youth Ambassadors

Youth Ambassadors, Will, age 8, and Kyle, age 13.

JDRF Delaware Branch’s Youth Ambassadors – local children living type 1 diabetes (T1D) between the ages of 4 to 18 – gathered at the studio of local artist Sherry Brilliant to create a one-of-a-kind painting to be featured in the live auction of 2014 JDRF Delaware Hope Ball: Unmask A Cure, which will take place April 26 at the Chase Center on the Riverfront.

This year’s art project is titled “Faces of T1D” and features self-portraits of the Youth Ambassadors. These aren’t your typical self-portraits, though. The Youth Ambassadors were asked to paint their faces to reveal something about themselves that you wouldn’t be able to know just from looking at them. Kasey Lee, age 11, painted her face as clown to reflect her sense of humor and Brogan Press, age 13, painted his face as the Italian flag to show his love for his favorite soccer team.

Brogan Press

Brogan, age 13, works on his portrait.

The finished Youth Ambassador Art Project will be revealed as the final live auction item at the Hope Ball and it is expected to raise thousands of dollars to further JDRF’s mission to cure, treat and prevent T1D. Each spring more than 400 guests of JDRF friends, families and corporate partners will gather one evening to raise more than $400,000 to fund life-saving research.

“I like seeing the other kids with diabetes and coloring together,” said 7-year-old Jenna Willmott. Jenna has served at a JDRF Youth Ambassador since she was diagnosed T1D at age 4. “When I see the art on the stage it makes me feel happy and good because I like seeing people spending money on it to help find a cure.”

Jenna Willmott

Jenna, age 7, works on her portrait.

In addition to working together on the group painting “Faces of T1D,” each Youth Ambassador also created their own Mardi Gras mask to be featured in the silent auction at the Hope Ball.

This year marks the third year Sherry Brilliant has lent her expertise to guide the Youth Ambassador Art Project. Sherry began this project because she is “very passionate giving children a voice through visual art.”

“This project is important because all type 1 diabetics who come into my studio feel differently about their disease, but whatever they are feeling, the project gives them a way to speak about what it means to live with type 1 diabetes.” said Sherry.  “I love to do it as I am completely inspired by the spirit of my little artist friends.”


To see more pictures for the art project click here.


To learn more about Sherry Brilliant’s art click here.