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Francis B. O'Connell Jr., of Duluth, shares "I believe that creative work of almost any kind can be quite therapeutic. Just letting go and having your creative self take the reigns for a while can be freeing and empowering. There is no denying it feels good while it's in progress, and the results can surprise us.

Whether it's a painting, a chicken dinner or a harmonious work environment, it's all the same. It's the reflection of the creativity within us.

That is what I believed when I first picked up a paintbrush, and that belief grows stronger every day.

Recently I was offered to hang several of my paintings on the walls of the Iron Mug coffee house in Morgan Park. This brought to mind the good feelings I had when my parents would stick my artwork to the kitchen fridge."