Category Archives: Featured

New Huffington Post Blog: An Artist With Crohn’s Disease Looks Back at Living Without A Colon For 35 Years

First Surgery - A painting by Daniel Leighton

First Surgery (2011) A depiction of what I was like when I was in ICU recovering from that first surgery. My intestine was coming out of my body (I had an ileostomy), along with 5 or 6 tubes.

35 years and 1 week ago today I had my entire colon (large intestine) removed (known as a “colectomy”). I was 11 years old. 6 years earlier I had been diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis.It was the first of what would be 6 surgeries. I had one each at age 11, 12, 13, 14, 17, and 21.

When I had that first operation, part of what we were expecting was that I would be cured. That was the language and thinking used by the medical community and the CCFA (Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America), one of the primary funders of research for Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD, which includes both Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn’s Disease). The idea is that you if you take out the colon, you can’t have Ulcerative Colitis. This didn’t work out for me, though, because when I was 20, I was re-diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease. Even if it did work out I think the word “cure” used in the context of removing your entire colon which alters your life permanently in big and small ways is misleading to patients and their families. To their credit, some, including the CCFA, have stopped calling colectomies cures.

Anyway, when they told me I had Crohn’s, it meant that I was not cured and I thought I was going to have to go through all the horrible things I went through in the first 20 years of my life again and I just really didn’t think I could. So far, it’s turned out that I had one more surgery at age 21 and haven’t had to have one since. I do have number 7 coming up but not for Crohn’s, for a torn rotator cuff. One fear I have about it is that I will get sick again as I did before my last surgery. I was so terrified of having another surgery that I think I stressed myself into sickness because I took a major downturn that began when we finalized the date and ended with the removal of more of my small intestine (some had previously been removed in other surgeries).

Read the rest on Huffington Post

Also posted in Art, Biographical, Crohn's/Ulcerative Colitis, Health, Inspiring, iPad Art, Writing

Daniel Leighton in Los Angeles on 04/14/17 – M.A.R.S Festival (Music & Arts ReSound)

I am so excited to be a part of this festival. Nothing thrils me more than combining my art with music and this festival does just that along with the art of Osceola Refetoff, Kristine Schomaker, Jay Mark Johnson, Kio Griffith, Dosshaus, Amy Kaps and many others. Thank you to curator Shana Nys Dambrot!

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Daniel Leighton in Toronto on 06/26/16 – 20th Annual Museums and the Web conference

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Daniel Leighton in Los Angeles on 04/16/16

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Daniel Leighton in Los Angeles on 07/06/16

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Daniel Leighton in Los Angeles on 04/06/16 at The Broad Museum Opening Reception for 20th Annual Museums and the Web conference

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Daniel Leighton in Los Angeles on 04/06/16 – 20th Annual Museums and the Web conference

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Our First Kickstarter Campaign Goes Live

After wanting to for several years, we finally launched our first crowdfunding campaign via Kickstarter. This one will fund my next solo show, Permission To Enter, which opens on October 17th at LAAA/Gallery 825. We’re two days in and we’re already 25% funded. I recently read a statistic that 79% of the campaigns on Kickstarter that reached the 20% mark so we’re pretty happy with where we are after launching on Sunday afternoon. I’m still anxious, though, and will be until we’re fully funded. Of course, I hope to surpass our $8000 goal. We have some great rewards and I am really happy with how our video turned out, so I think we have a great chance to get some extra excitement around what we are doing.

The rewards include, digital downloads, fine art prints, augmented reality t-shirts, the ability to add your name into the AR.

I’d love your support. Please consider becoming a backer and spreading the word.

Also posted in Apple, Art, Augmented Reality, Crohn's/Ulcerative Colitis, Funding, iPad Art, Technology

Daniel Leighton in Los Angeles on 10/17/15

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“Pure Love” (2014)

"Pure Love" (2014) by Daniel Leighton
No matter what is in front of us and what is behind us, at this moment, we have pure love.






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