Philly illustrator to paint the town green at NYC Earth Day festival

Photo courtesy Molly Egan

Philadelphia-based artist Molly Egan is heading to New York City’s Union Square next week to participate in a live art installation that is meant to inspire people to live greener lives.

Egan is one of seven artists who will create artwork at the annual Earth Day event, which is being held on Tuesday, a day after the holiday. She recently explained to Metro what inspired her to showcase her talents for the greater, greener good.

Metro: What drew you to participate in Tuesday’s Earth Day Initiative event?

Egan: I was excited to be contacted by John Oppermann, the Executive Director of Earth Day Initiative, to participate in the event. In my home and studio, I try to make decisions to positively impact the environment wherever possible. I’m always thrilled when, as an illustrator, I can connect something I’m passionate about in my daily life to an image I can create.

Metro: What can people expect from your work on Tuesday? What is the inspiration behind the artwork?

Egan: All of the artists participating will be working on large 5’x6′ canvases and focusing on a different theme. In my piece for the event, I’ll be exploring the idea of green living. To show how living a more sustainable lifestyle can be accessible to all of us, I plan to show people doing a variety of environmentally friendly activities. For city dwellers, a great start is to bike, walk, or use public transportation – rather than relying on your own vehicle or ride shares. I’ll also be depicting people making more sustainable choices like recycling, composting, replacing plastic water bottles with reusable ones, and eating more environmentally friendly foods. I’m excited to use bright colors, pattern, and stylized people as a way to explore an important concept.

Metro: How do you hope Tuesday’s event will impact people? Do you think it will inspire change?

Egan: I hope that New Yorkers and visitors to the city enjoy the event and are inspired to make small changes in their lives to live more sustainably. I think it’s always exciting to have events where it will not only be fun and inviting, but also encourage people to learn something new.

If you go:

Tuesday’s event is free and open to the public and will be held rain or shine. The festival runs from noon until 6:30 p.m., and will feature dozens of exhibits by environmental non-profits and green businesses as well as kids’ activities, and performances. The annual gathering is considered the most high-traffic Earth Day event in the nation. This year, organizers are launching a one-year countdown to the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, which began in 1970.

Metro is proud to be Earth Day Initiative’s exclusive newspaper partner. Visit to learn how you can help build a more sustainable future.

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