Katrina Inspires Coast Artists

Artists have a way of transforming something ugly into something beautiful.

Several Bay St. Louis artists are unveiling work they've done using Hurricane Katrina as their inspiration.

"Home Sweet FEMA Home?"

Jenise McCardell says she created the design hoping to get a chuckle.

She got much more.

Her ceramic plaques have become so popular that like the real FEMA trailers, she has backlog of orders.

This isn't the only Katrina inspired artwork in her Bay St. Louis shop.

"There's lots of hurricane inspired art," said McCardell. " There's photographers with before and after photos. I'm working on the FEMA trailer plaque which is your 'Home Sweet FEMA Home' and it is a very hot item."

Lori Gordon has already sold several pieces of her Katrina Collection .

The artwork is made of the debris she collected after hurricane.

What was once ugly rubble, now has another meaning.

"A feeling of rebirth," said Gordon. "A feeling of hope. A feeling of moving forward. We're taking elements of something that was so destruction and turning them into something. Creating something new and something that is appealing and exciting."

Gordon says she's received a good response to her artwork from locals and people in other parts of the country.

She admits her most powerful motivation is that the art is helping her heal from the devastation.

"Me doing these is really a very selfish act. I'm doing this because I need to and if other people can get something good out of it that's great," she said.

Jenise McCardell says she has taken 12 displaced artists into her shop "Clay Creations" in Bay St. Louis.

The downtown holds Second Saturday festivities each week now. Before the storm it was monthly.