Cancer patient finds an uplifting muse in his ‘med list critters’ artwork

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DENVER — Anything can be a canvas. That’s what acute lymphoblastic leukemia patient Scotty Magoun teaches with his bi-weekly checkups at The Colorado Blood Cancer Institute at Presbyterian/St. Luke’s Medical Center in Denver.

“Part of it is to brighten up people’s day. Or maybe I’m just a show-off? I don’t know,” joked Scotty Magoun about his artwork. “If I can brighten their day up by sharing this with them, then I’m all for it.”

Magoun’s canvas is medicine sheets and hospital documents outlining his diagnosis. His lists of medicine are accompanied by tigers, bears, peacocks, dogs and eagles depicted with immense attention to detail. They are so colorful that the hospital has dedicated their walls to his art.

“It is just really special and our patients love to see it,” said Darcy Graves, a nurse at the Colorado Blood Cancer Institute. “Scotty comes in and he brings us these beautiful pictures with these meds on them and we have started to put a collection together.”

Magoun has been living with his diagnosis for three years, through it drawing dozens of creatures for the walls of the Colorado Blood Cancer Institute. He says his artwork is meant to inspire others to find joy and light in difficult times.

“The reason that I’m doing this is to give back to a bunch of people that are giving so much to everybody,” Magoun said.”If I can brighten their day up by sharing this with them, then it’s I’m all for it.”