Paige Espey is a Speech-Language Pathologist from Tennessee who uses art to both bring healing and support Ekisa’s work in Uganda.
“My art and emotions really exploded when my brother passed away unexpectedly in September 2018,” Paige recalls. “Despite the loss and pain, the Lord sent so much promise and hope by sending me 15 plus rainbows to enjoy in the month my brother died.”
This event was a turning point for Paige. Because of the encouragement that she received that month, she was inspired to do something very unique, and very colorful.
“I paint rainbows now so that I can spread my story and remind myself that God is good even on the darkest, hardest days.”
She has painted 25 canvases of rainbows since she started.
Today, she runs two businesses, Paige Espey Art and Little Yellow Door.
“Paige Espey Art is my account where I showcase my art. I use several mediums, including watercolor, acrylic, pen, and oil pastel. I create across a large spectrum, but overall, my art examines the raw emotions humans feel after death, loss, diagnosis, etc. I find healing in expressing my own feelings of grief on canvas, but I also collect stories of others who have been through difficult times. I use their stories to create shareable graphics with encouraging quotes.”
While Paige Espey Art was inspired by her brother, a love for vintage decor was a seed planted by her mother.
“My mother used to antique and drag me to every auction and estate sale in West Tennessee when I was little. She passed away when I was seven. She was also an artist. I guess you could say art and antiquing definitely make me feel closer to her.”
This led her to start her other business, Little Yellow Door.
“Little Yellow Door is a fun little outlet — not that painting isn't fun! I collect and sell vintage decor and furniture, mainly from the 1930s–1960s.”
“...I just felt the tug to DO MORE. In any way I could, I knew I needed to DO MORE.”
Paige uses parts of her profits from both businesses to support Ekisa’s work. It was while she was volunteering with HEAL Ministries in Uganda that she learned of Ekisa.
“I am actually a licensed Speech-Language Pathologist and have a love for mission. I prayed before I went to Uganda that the Lord would show me a way I could contribute and help even while I am in the States. When we toured Ekisa, my breath was taken away. My wheels were spinning. My heart was pounding so hard because these kids are the type of kids I work with in the States. That's when I decided I would donate portions of my sales to Ekisa.”
While visiting Ekisa, Paige learned of the problems that children and families of disability face in Uganda.
“It makes me actually sick to think of all the children who don't receive the services they need. There's even a shortage of Speech Pathologists in the States...and I know they are even more rare in Uganda. But after visiting Ekisa, I just felt the tug to DO MORE. In any way I could, I knew I needed to DO MORE.”
Paige would love to pack her bags and move to Uganda, but she sees another purpose for her life right now.
“I would give anything to come work at Ekisa,” she says. “...BUT until I can get there, I want to do all I can to promote Ekisa stateside.”
You can follow Paige’s art on Instagram at @paige.espey.art and Little Yellow Door at @littleyellowdoor