PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- A group of local artists has found a unique way to process the ongoing.
"Painting someone's portrait is such an intimate act. You know how they smile," artist Nancy Gordon said. "You know what's in their eyes. You can see through to their soul."
, Gordon and her friends Sivia Braunstein and Judy Rohtbart have been hard at work.
"We've used art among us to heal all sorts of aches and pains, family traumas, what's going on in the world," Gordon said.
The Jewish trio met at Fleisher Art Memorial, and they call themselves the Fleishettes.
Each is deeply connected to the ongoing war between Israel and Hamas.
Braunstein was visiting her sister's kibbutz on Oct. 7.
"When we woke up in the morning and had to go to the sirens and go into the safe room with the whole family," Braunstein said. "The children. The dogs. We didn't know what was going on for a day. A day and a half, and then everybody, everything just changed."
When she returned to Philadelphia, Braunstein had an idea, a way to use their love of art to process the trauma of an ongoing war.
"When I realized this was the way to go," Braunstein said, "I spoke to my friends and they jumped right on board."
Paint the faces of hostages taken by Hamas. So far, they've painted 49 portraits.
"I absolutely feel that I'm honoring them," Rohtbart said, "and I feel as Nancy said, that you're reaching their souls somehow."
"Whoever I was painting and wherever they were," Gordon said, "I think they knew somebody was touching them with love."
As they look at each face, they hold onto hope that through their art, humanity will shine through.
And each hostage will know, they are not forgotten.
"These people will always be with us," Gordon said, "and they'll always be part of our heart."
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