Artist who creates official posters for major golf competitions designs ‘poster project for COVID-crisis’

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MILWAUKEE -- The postponement of the golf schedule due to the coronavirus pandemic has changed the way golfers are approaching their work, and the way a renowned golf artist is going about his business.

"My phone was pinging the other day of letting me know I was missing my flight to Augusta," said Lee Wybranski.

Instead of being among the patrons and azaleas at Augusta National for the Masters in early April, Wybranski spoke with FOX6 News from home in the mountains of Arizona.

"We can get outside a little bit, stretch our eyes, stretch our legs, so, you know, given the circumstances, we're doing as well as can be expected," said Wybranski.

In a typical year, Wybranski would be heavily focused on designing and painting the official posters for golf's biggest events.

"With all the major championships being delayed and postponed, that sort of opened up this peculiar window of, you know, of quiet," said Wybranski.

Lee Wybranski

The coronavirus pandemic has shifted Wybranski's focus.

"We knew we really wanted to do a poster project for the COVID-19 crisis," said Wybranski.

The end result -- a poster featuring health care workers -- with a message for all.

"We decided that the first thing that we should really do is shine the spotlight on the people who are putting themselves at risk for the betterment and welfare and health of, you know, all of us, so that's what we did," said Wybranski. "The most important part, to me, is that doctors, and nurses, and health care professionals get to see this, and share this amongst themselves, so I hope that's what happens."

Lee Wybranski

He's also hoping to raise a lot of money for charity -- benefiting frontline workers -- something that's personal for Wybranski.

"I have a good half a dozen cousins and others, siblings who are involved and so, they are struggling with this," said Wybranski. "I mean, they have kids to go home to. They're stripping in the garage, and running into the shower to try and make sure, after a long day of helping other people, they're not bringing it home to their family."

Family played a role in determining what the artwork would look like.

"It was actually my brother-in-law that first came up with the idea of trying to take inspiration from those great World War II posters and update it for what Americans and the world are going through at this time," said Wybranski.

Lee Wybranski

It's similar to his iconic golf art -- a modern look, with a nod to that important era.

"A lot of my poster work for golf even is inspired by the 20s, 30s and 40s," said Wybranski. "One of the great genres within those decades are the war-time posters, the World War II posters that were calling the citizens to action."

Wybranski said the project has inspired him to continue creating original art during the pandemic.

"We are going to be partnering with a noted tour professional on another COVID-19 related charitable project in the coming weeks," said Wybranski. "That's going to take a little bit of my attention. When everyone's sort of stuck inside, I felt like this was a neat opportunity to put something out there that was uplifting, hopeful, still serious, but something that was positive for the time."

Lee Wybranski

Wybranski will be in Wisconsin to do the official poster for the Ryder Cup, still scheduled for Sept. 25-27 at Whistling Straits.

CLICK HERE to check out more of Wybranski's artwork.

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