I was asked by Maria Keehan to re-envision Norman Rockwell’s painting Freedom of Speech for the cover of Smithsonian Magazine. Growing up in New York City I never felt Norman Rockwell captured the America I knew, so I use a friend from my childhood as my model, thanks Melanie Hope. Freedom of speech is most important when it is threatened, which is true now as it was when Norman Rockwell did his original paintings in 1943.