UNR Med student siblings crack books for more than just education

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John-Henry and Rachael Lambin

University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine first-year medical students and siblings John-Henry and Rachael Lambin.

Art and medicine have shared a close relationship in a variety of ways for centuries. At the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine, two first-year medical students who share a passion for both art and medicine are intertwined by more than just the same book titles in their backpacks. Rachael Lambin and John-Henry Lambin share a close relationship as siblings.


Shaped by their shared upbringing and passion for art, Rachael and John-Henry, along with their mom, Debbie, are the artists behind a local book sculpting business, called My Thousand Words. Rachael says “the name comes from the saying that a picture, or in our case, a sculpture, is worth a thousand words, and books are comprised of thousands of words.”


This talented brother and sister bring books to life through repurposing words on pages into unique sculptured theme stories. Patient care is a lot like the Lambins’ creative process. Bringing health care to life requires piecing together multiple, complex details in order to diagnose, create treatment plans, and provide medical counsel. The integration of art and science is second nature for Rachael and John-Henry.


Rachael is currently working on a Gray’s Anatomy-inspired skeletal sculpture for UNR Med’s Savitt Medical Library and hopes to complete the piece this spring. Gray’s Anatomy is a historic and renowned textbook of human anatomy originally written by Henry Gray in 1858. The book is an extremely influential work in medical education and has continued to be revised and republished to present day.


Their artwork can be found in the Nevada Museum of Art in Reno, Artsy Fartsy Gallery in Carson City, Eye Hook Photographic Gallery in Reno, Elegant Avenue Decor in Reno and Benko Art Gallery in South Lake Tahoe.


While UNR Med ranks 13th in the nation's top 20 most affordable medical schools, according to a study released by USA Today, as aspiring surgeons, Rachael and John-Henry’s creativity is helping carve out extra cash to finance their medical education. Prices for their artwork range from $150-$500. Custom sculptures starts around $250. One piece can take anywhere from a couple hours to weeks to complete.


KTVN’s Kristen Remington visited UNR Med to share the story about Rachael and John-Henry’s time in the books, both artistically and scientifically. For the full story from KTVN, visit My Thousand Words Book Sculptures.

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The University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine, Nevada's first public medical school, is a community-based, research-intensive medical school with a statewide vision for a healthy Nevada. Established in 1969, UNR Med is improving the health and well-being of all Nevadans and their communities through excellence in student education, postgraduate training and clinical care, research with local, national and global impact and a culture of diversity and inclusion.