Dr Samuel Turner ‘overwhelmed’ by NHS Hero portrait

dr samuel turner overwhelmed by nhs hero portrait - Dr Samuel Turner 'overwhelmed' by NHS Hero portraitImage copyright Nigel Gibson /Weave Creative
Image caption Marquetry is the art and craft of using pieces of wood veneer to form decorative patterns or pictures.

A hospital doctor’s exhaustion after a shift at the height of the coronavirus pandemic has been captured in thousands of pieces of wood.

Dr Samuel Turner, 39, normally works as a renal transplant surgeon but helped set up Bristol‘s Southmead Hospital Covid-19 wards.

The 2ft tall (0.6m) portrait captures his fatigue and dishevelled appearance.

It took four artists 400 hours to produce the piece, valued at £15,000.

The wood picture of Dr Turner – using the art of marquetry – was inspired by artist Tom Croft who offered to paint a key worker’s portrait to honour their role in the pandemic fight.

Having completed his painting of A&E nurse Harriet Durkin in March, he encouraged 500 more artists to immortalise front-line staff using the tag #portraitsfornhsheroes.

A creative hub of artists and craftspeople at Wheathills, on the outskirts of Derby, offered a free portrait to the first NHS worker who made contact.

Dr Turner’s wife, Sananda, who works at the same hospital in Bristol, nominated him as “a steady, calm influence… the kind of guy who is quiet and modest and I felt he deserved a little something for the hard work he does”.

Image copyright Wheathills
Image caption Nigel Heldreich (r) from Wheathills drove to Bristol to present the work to Dr Turner

The artwork was created using a combination of digital and traditional art and put together by marquetry specialist Byron Moxey, who cut thousands of minute pieces of timber.

Each piece was carefully selected for its grain direction, colour and texture, to faithfully represent fine details of face and hair.

Dr Turner insisted “he was only doing his job” and “never felt like a NHS hero”.

“I was stunned, lost for words and a little bit tearful as I grasped that a team of artists had been working on my face and had created an honest portrait in every line and detail.

“I was overwhelmed”.

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