By Heather Janssen

ELK GROVE (CBS13) — As many businesses begin the reopening process, people who rely on the entertainment industry still have their normal work lives on pause. But that doesn’t mean they haven’t found other ways to stay afloat amid trying times.

With each stroke of the brush, Rich Diltz paints a bigger, brighter picture of these turbulent times.

“I don’t do art to get paid, I do this because I enjoy it,” Diltz said. He hopes to bring these smiles to other people, too.

Diltz is used to painting at large events this time of year, but since the pandemic put a halt on partying, his source of income quickly shrunk.

“Large events, lots of people,” Diltz said. “My May went from one of my best months in my entire career to nothing in a matter of three days.”

But he refused to be left high and dry. Instead, he’s found a new way to make art on a smaller canvas, like a window, helping people like Michelle Lau.

READ: Wilton Family Helping Others With ‘Christmas In Quarantine’ Project

“It’s been a tough year,” Lau said. She’s looking to celebrate the good things, even if they look a little different this year. Things like her daughter’s sixth-grade promotion. Commemorating it by shouting it loud to the world on a window.

“Just to do something nice to know that we’re proud of them,” Lau said.

That feeling of pride is one Diltz knows well. He takes it in his work.

“Helping people celebrate graduation, helping people celebrate birthdays, Diltz said. “Now hopefully helping businesses celebrate their reopenings.”

Thankful for the support, he says, as everyone still adjusts to this new normal. Diltz has also created art for healthcare workers to thank them for their help during this pandemic.

Heather Janssen

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