Lisa’s tenth NHS portrait is of Fazila, who is better known to her friends as ‘Fuzzy’. She works for the NHS in Leicester City on the rapid response home first team as a Generic Technical Therapy Instructor. This portrait is unique as Lisa has a deeply personal connection to the subject, having known her since motherhood:
“[Fuzzy] is a wonderful, warm, wise, kind and funny friend, I love her to bits! When I had my last solo exhibition, she was there for me in my hanging team. We would regularly go to Norfolk together as a group of seven friends & walk on the beach [pre-pandemic], so I painted her against a sunny sandy background to remind her that those days will come again.”
This portrait appears as a caricature of nurses and doctors often seen on television by pulling on a comically large glove. This visual cue evokes an auditory response, as if we can hear the snap of the latex material onto Fuzzy’s wrist. Varying shades of NHS blue manifest from Fuzzy’s lanyard, to her shirt, to her medical mask. Her rich, dark hair falls either side in uniform plaits, framing Fuzzy’s smiling eyes and crinkled nose.
When speaking about her efforts during the pandemic, Fuzzy said:
“Working in the community with COVID-19 has been very busy and stressful. It has had a big impact on the vulnerable elderly people mainly with being in lockdown. All community services have had to step up and provide so much support mentally and physically. Also supporting work colleagues when things have got tough. It has taught people and communities to be thoughtful and help each other. For me to cope I deal with each day one at a time and stay positive and know we are being appreciated.”
Lisa’s portrait of Fuzzy is also published in Portraits for NHS Heroes by Tom Croft, with all royalties being donated to ‘NHS Charities Together’. It is available to order from Bloomsbury, Waterstones and Amazon.
Upon recieving her portrait, Fuzzy said it was “better than winning the lottery”.
To view more of Lisa’s portraits of NHS Heroes and read their stories, visit her website.