Mother’s Day cards designed by St. Louis artists
The project is an initiative of the St. Louis Area Diaper Bank and the Alliance for Period Supplies to honor mothers and raise awareness of diaper needs in the community
ST. LOUIS – Mother’s Day Cards, designed by four local artists including Janessa Williams, Mary Martin, Katie Schaefer, and Alicia Arnold, are at the St. Louis Area Diaper Bank and Green Door Art Gallery through May 9 for $ 10 each available.
The project is an initiative of the St. Louis Area Diaper Bank and the Alliance for Period Supplies to honor mothers and raise awareness of diaper needs in the community. Every third parent routinely does not have enough diapers for their child. Unlike formula, baby food, and other necessities, diapers are not eligible for WIC grants or other nonprofit programs. The diaper bank aims to help empower low-income families in our region by ensuring access to an adequate supply of diapers.
Muriel Smith, Executive Director of Diaper Bank, welcomes the project’s mission to celebrate motherhood, promote diversity and educate people about diaper needs. “We’re excited to be working with our community volunteers and ambassadors to create these really cool, one-of-a-kind cards,” said Smith. “Hopefully people will learn more about our local needs, understand what that means and how they can help.”
Williams, 27, is a multidisciplinary visual artist and graphic designer based in Jennings. She specializes in merchandise design, brand identity, advertising and marketing design. As the mother of a four-year-old son, Theo, she jumped on board immediately after a friend recommended her for the job. Since art is already her passion and motherhood, and has an important place in her life, it became clear that the opportunity suits her well. Her favorite part about being a mother is watching her son grow up and see his personality develop and transform into his own self.
“Theo is so animated that he never shies away with his facial expressions and always has very bright eyes,” said Williams. “I just love it. He’s a great bundle of joy.”
“Mother’s Day is about loving your mom and caring for your mom,” Williams explained, “but at the end of mom it’s also excited, happy, and proud to have a baby. It’s like another birthday for mothers. “
Their cards depict multiethnic women hugging their babies with a flower bed. The other designs include variations of the word “mother” in light, bold block letters, multicolored roses, and various beautiful sunflowers.
Smith appreciates Williams’ extensive efforts to highlight multi-ethnic women in their designs. She thinks it is important that the project is representative of our community. “I think it reflects the community, and when people buy Mother’s Day cards, they like to see yourself in the cards or others that you buy cards for,” said Smith. “These were great ways for her to express that and show diversity in Mother’s Day cards that you don’t always see.”
Williams’ usually contains elements of Afro-Futurism, so the Diaper Bank project was very different from their usual work. She said the inspiration for her extraterrestrial art comes from her belief that black people are ethereal.
“I feel like we’re connected to the earth and we’re magical,” said Williams. “I love the supernatural, I love ghosts, I love aliens, all that stuff is me. I just kind of meshed the two together, and I think since we’re like aliens on Earth we’re the least respected, but also the most beautiful to me. That almost makes us aliens on our own planet. “
She hopes that every mother who buys a card will enjoy buying something that has been made and designed by a black artist herself. “It’s a one of a kind gift that I hope will bring a smile to your mother’s face and can be something to frame or use as a keepsake.” Williams said.
Martin, owner of the Green Door Art Gallery, loves the tenderness Williams shows in her designs and how well the flowers are intertwined with them. Ironically, she said that even though each of the artists created their art separately, all of the pieces still look cohesive.
“It’s almost like we all talked to each other beforehand, but we didn’t. Our colors are similar and some of the flowers are similar, ”said Martin. “It looks cool, they go very well together. I am very happy to be exhibiting it here. “
The cards are available from the St. Louis Area Diaper Bank in 6141 Etzel Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at https://www.stldiaperbank.org/ or in the Green Door Art Gallery. located at 21 N. Gore Avenue, Wednesday through Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., https://www.greendoorartgallery.com/.
You can see more of Williams’ art on her Instagram account at https://www.instagram.com/color_tripz/.