Artist’s Journals

A collection of writings and multimedia that describe and detail the perspective of an artist in residence in the hospital and their work at the bedside.

Ricky Kendall, Musician in Residence

Ricky is a musician from the Gainesville, FL area who serves as a musician in residence with UF Health Shands Arts in Medicine. His reflections on patient engagements during his practice have been curated as blog posts which provide new perspective on what it means to work in a hospital in a patient-led service.


“Acting upon a creative impulse can excite the mind and body because the act of creation promises something new. Something that wasn’t there before appears because someone put it there, be it a color, a word or a sound.”

hand on hand painting


“I met him through a nurse on a cardiac ICU. ‘Could you play for my patient?’ she asked. ‘And don’t tell him I told you this, but he can really sing. Try to get him to sing with you.'”

Ricky and Jamal

Betsy Fisher, Guest Writer

Betsy Fisher is a mother, writer, and champion of Arts in Medicine. During her time as a caregiver to her son, Marshal, she wrote from her point of view about Marshal’s experiences in a healthcare setting where the arts and health often intersected. These are entries from her journals.

Soon After Lunch

“Ricky arrived in the early afternoon. He was carrying a guitar, just in case, but quickly discovered that drawing, not making music, was to be his calling today. ”

Marshal and Ricky

Just Let Me Draw

“I have heard these words so many times before. They were my clue that it was not only okay but imperative that I leave the room and give the two of them their studio.”

Marshal drawing

More or Less

Making more from art and crafting supplies provided.
That’s just what he did and who he was.


Marshal’s pARTy

“‘…and so it begins.’  I described how we were right where we needed to be, together. We didn’t like parts of being a cancer family. In fact we liked little of it, but we were already getting better at it.”

Marshal's pARTy book

The Front

“It moved in one afternoon… 
the front, bringing a warmth 
they had forgotten somehow 
but just to the living room.”

The Front

The Doodle Anniversary

“It is love carrying on. It is my proof. Living proof that just as more can be made from these incredible beginnings of doodles and sketches, more can be made from my story with Marshal.”

Doodle Anniversary