08:25PM, Monday 10 May 2021
A Maidenhead artist says she feels 'like a new woman' after completing a fundraising challenge set by the family of Captain Sir Tom Moore.
Deborah Mason, from Ray Park Avenue, attempted to complete 100 portraits in 50 hours from April 30 (which would have been Sir Captain Tom's 101st birthday), until May 3.
Monies raised will go towards the Magic Me arts charity, a good cause based in London which helps link different generations through creative activity.
Different groups of people - and animals - sat in person on platforms such as Zoom or Microsoft Teams, or sent a photo in via email for Deborah to draw.
She also saw people visit her, socially-distanced, in her front garden for a live portrait.
After several pieces of paper and four days of concentration, Deborah has now completed her challenge, having drawn for about 12 hours each day.
"I started with quite a low (fundraising) target and upped it to £500, but as I write it has just gone over £1,600 which is amazing," Deborah said.
"The money will be so useful to Magic Me and will really help them make a difference to lives in London's east end (and beyond).
"Drawing for 12 hours a day was tiring; boy did my back ache, but it also produced a great sense of achievement when I could see that not only was I hitting my target for portraits drawn, but also exceeding my fundraising target."
Deborah was completing the challenge in aid of the 'Captain Tom 100' initiative, which saw people take part in 100-themed challenges across the UK.
She added: "For me drawing has always helped my mental health and I really enjoyed creating the portraits, meeting new people and catching up with old friends as I did so.
"A fundraising challenge like this also helps with my depression and anxiety. An achievable but challenging target gives me the motivation to keep going.
"Reaching my target has lifted my mood completely and I feel like a new woman. Even though I am a little tired after 50 hours of drawing – it’s happy tired.
"If you’ve never tried a fundraising challenge – give it a go – it doesn’t just help charity but could help you too."
To see all of the portraits, click here.
To sponsor Deborah, click here.