Painter aims to ­inspire Concord music students

Painter aims to ­inspire Concord music students
Sabrina Willett hopes her artwork helps Concord High ­students create the right “mindset and attitude in life.”

Editor’s note: Lisa Fulmer is retiring and has turned her column over to John Nakanishi, president of the Concord Arts Association. We thank Lisa for her past work and wish her well in her new endeavors.

John NakanishiCONCORD, CA (Mar. 2, 2022) — As you enter the music room at Concord High, you’ll be struck by the eye-catching acrylic paintings by Sabrina Willett.

“Sabrina’s artwork has brought color, relevance and inspiration to the classroom,” says Martin Lejano, director of instrumental music and chair of the Performing Arts Department. “Existing in this artistic space filled with beautiful paintings of influential musicians can only lead to more musical inspiration.”

Lejano met Willett through the United Spirit Association, a summer training camp company that teaches band and leadership to middle and high school students. According to Willett, conversations with Lejano about helping students create the right “mindset and attitude in life” led to the desire to inspire students “to continue to find and embody love, whether it be through music, drawing, painting or connecting with people.”

Willett’s favorite piece at Concord High is a five-piece set of painted silhouettes of the Beatles, accompanied by the quote, “All you need is love.”

Different ‘canvases’

A recent graduate of San Diego State, Willett began her creative journey in 2017 as a self-taught special-effects makeup artist. In 2020, she began experimenting with different “canvases,” such as worn vinyl records, jeans, leather jackets and basically “anything that could be painted on.”

She hopes that viewers of her art will “find some part of the piece that resonates with them … whether that be through emotional connection or visual satisfaction.”

Her creative process is unique for each piece, starting with a conversation for commissioned works. “The goal is to gain understanding and find middle ground in regard to what the piece’s meaning is and how it can be communicated in a way that we both are excited about.”

Vibrancy and movement

Willett captures vibrancy and movement with her brushstrokes and color palette. When I see the music room, I can’t help but think what a gift her artwork is to the students.

In addition to painting with acrylics, Sabrina enjoys making jewelry and using a heat gun to melt vinyl records into different shapes, such as candleholders. You can purchase some of her artwork at her Etsy shop (ArticleCo) and view her special-effects makeup art on Instagram (@sabrinawillett).

John Nakanishi is an acrylic painter and a ceramic artist. When he isn’t creating art, he coaches competitive soccer. Email comments and suggestions for future columns to