Nursing and art: perfect together

After caring for her son, who has type 1 diabetes, Hsiao-lin “Pearl” Chiang knew her true calling was to become a nurse (so much for her Master’s degree in computer science).

Chiang, a resident of Bridgewater, N.J., started her nursing career at Muhlenberg Hospital in Plainfield, moved on to the Bonnie Brae School in Basking Ridge and then joined the nursing staff at Matheny in 2006.

But it’s not just nursing that tugs at her heart: she has always loved to paint. “One of my friends, who has a lot of galleries in Taiwan, saw my paintings and offered me a big show at the Art Yards Café in Taipei,” she says. The exhibit, containing 38 paintings, was held from August 7-October 5 of this year, and Chiang was there for the premiere. Many of her paintings, such as “Mermaid” (below), “Japanese Beauty” and “Diamond Beauty,” depict beautiful women.

Her technique is to start with a pencil sketch, followed by a watercolor pencil. She then adds some other material like oil paint or a special effect such as embroidery or a pearl “to make it come to life. Painting helps me show my feelings directly.”