Nowadays, Peter, a cancer survivor (malignant pleural mesothelioma, which affects the lining of the lung), makes themes in his artwork show how painting and art embellish life and give it purpose. To counter the anxiety that comes with the cancer diagnosis, Peter has shown around 60 of his paintings at various hospitals in New Jersey. Painting and making art became his lifeline – a way to disconnect from the stark reality and find peace. Now, his hope is that his creations can do the same for others and hopefully can alleviate at least some of the anxiety and fear patients endure wandering hospital halls.
“Whatever it takes to lead a normal life, do it,” Peter said. The book was written as a legacy, "so that my family and friends would learn more about my past," he said.
It took him nearly four months to put it together, with the help of a graphic designer/ photographer friend who over the years had photographed most of Peter's paintings.
"Since hundreds have been sold over the years, it would not have been possible to put together as good a book otherwise," he said. A June 15 article about his experiences called Colors of Hope: Inspiring the Meso Community appears on the Mesothelioma Research Foundation's website.