I wish to create a coloring app supporting diverse images of beauty
A wish adds color to the world
A daughter and mother share with the world natural beauty inside and out
Oriana has always had an uplifting effect on others, says her mother, Nechama. “You just look at her and want to smile,” she says. “She is joyful and she just glows. She's beautiful inside and out, but she just really has that energy about her.”
This gift of spirit, of being able to bring joy to others through a smile or a look, is part of Oriana’s expressive nature. It’s no wonder Oriana is also a dancer and has always felt in tune with her body, too. This sense of self is also what helped Oriana get to the hospital quickly when Oriana started having trouble breathing.
At the hospital, the doctors quickly went to work, finding enlarged lymph nodes inside Oriana’s body. Oriana was sedated immediately and intubated; she was diagnosed with leukemia. The intubation limited Oriana's movement and her ability to communicate. For months, she remained attached to tubes.
For Nechama, the stress of Oriana’s diagnosis added to what had already been a financially stressful time. For several years, beginning when Nechama was pregnant with Oriana and up until her daughter was a toddler, they moved five times and through it all, they had each other, and Oriana’s spirit was always transformative.
Oriana is grateful for all her family did to help her through her long recovery. "I was intubated for a very long time,” she says. “I couldn’t leave the bed, and my sister started bringing me coloring books and art stuff.”
"I was intubated for a very long time,” she says. “I couldn’t leave the bed, and my sister started bringing me coloring books and art stuff.”
When Oriana learned she was being granted a wish, she thought about wishes that other wish kids had made, like shopping sprees or trips. As a small business owner, her mom told her, “Let's really make sure that we're making the best of this opportunity.”
Nechama taught her daughter to respect diversity in all people, and she had intentionally exposed Oriana to different standards of internal and external beauty. So, when Oriana began thinking about what she really wanted for her wish, she started with how she felt about herself, as a person.
Oriana was intrigued by beauty as a form of self-expression. Even two years prior to being diagnosed with leukemia, she watched YouTube makeup videos and played with colors and possibilities.
While in the hospital, Oriana entertained herself with coloring books and coloring apps. But the people they depicted were disappointingly predictable. “They were just the same face each page,” she says, “Barbie, completely.”
Oriana wanted to color pictures of people who were as diverse as the people in her Bay Area community, but she couldn’t find anything that mirrored her world. Inspired by the need for diversity, Oriana decided to focus her wish on drawing and art. Her mom says, “It was just a light bulb. It was just like, oh my gosh, do you think we could actually do a beauty app?”
2 diverse coloring pages from the oBeauty App.
The oBeauty App that Make-A-Wish Greater Bay Area helped Oriana bring to fruition is a shining example of something that will help people see themselves in digital art, just as Oriana envisioned. With the help of an artist and an app developer, Oriana created eighteen coloring pages of real, relatable people with plans to add more faces every month. The idea of being able to color portraits of real people any way a user wants means a lot to Oriana, because it was something she was searching for herself.
“And in the darkest hours, [the wish] was something to look forward to, something good in the future. Make-A-Wish creates a reality where magic happens."
– Nechama, Oriana's mother
Nechama says Make-A-Wish has had a significant impact on their challenging journey. “Ever since there was a promise of the wish, Make-A-Wish kept the promise alive at every stage,” she says. “And in the darkest hours, it was something to look forward to, something good in the future. Make-A-Wish creates a reality where magic happens."
And this is what her daughter sees when she looks at the world: a place of endlessly diverse beauty.
Oriana's oBeauty App is a unique and innovative coloring app that provides you with a great way to pass time and reduce stress and anxiety.