This is a recent portrait commission that I finished. Look familiar? He is. You guessed it, this is a childhood picture of my husband.
New Zealand rap artist, Larz Randa (Mainard Larken) is totally “hot like tiger balm.” I’ve got mad respect for Randa’s androgynous style, endless smile, funk, quirk, and sense of humor. Check out the song Rangers and prepare to be hooked.
One day I asked my friend, “How are you?” to which he replied: “Oh you know, it’s been one of those days, darling. When I woke up this morning I discovered that I really needed to do my laundry. I wasn’t sure if I would have anything to wear! But just when I was beginning to despair, that’s when I found them, the last pair of underwear the universe had given me, hidden away for a special occasion. And so, you see, I was saved.”
I couldn’t have said it better myself.
My first crush was on a boy who took me on an adventure in the woods. We roamed over his parent’s seemingly endless plot of rural land in awe. We hunted for and found treasures in the leaves, we built a fantastic fort out of sticks, and we spent the golden-hour together with flushed cheeks and fresh air blowing through our hair. When my Mom came to pick me up I told her I would marry him. I was really young and didn’t know what I was talking about. My Mom just raised her eye-brows and smiled.
But I knew there was something special there. I really liked the idea of having a life-long adventure partner. That idea stuck with me as I got older. And I consider myself extremely lucky to actually have found that adventure partner. My husband is the best adventure partner I could imagine. We enjoy walks through the woods, reading next to the river, exploring abandoned ghost towns, and traveling together. We’re always talking about big ideas, making each other laugh, and we know how to have fun like two overgrown kids. In fact we’ve talked about our childhoods and determined that we would have made great adventure partners back then if only we had known each other. And that my friends, is the spirit of this illustration.
This illustration was heavily inspired by this *photo* of tame Reindeer taken in Alaska in the early 1900’s.
A few months ago I stumbled onto this video blog called Makayla’s Vanity. Makayla candidly opens herself up to the world by sharing her thoughts and ideas on youtube. She covers everything from her pixie-cut to bigger topics like being yourself and being confident in your own skin. From watching her videos I feel sure that she is adorable, thoughtful, and sweet. When I was 16 I had my own pixie-cut and my thoughts about life were all crammed in the pages of a journal that I did my best to hide. And that’s part of why I think Makayla’s vlog is so great. She’s not hiding, she’s sharing her herself and her insights with us as she grows. For many I think she’s probably a friend from afar. For me she’s an inspiring example of transparency. So this illustration is for you Makayla! Stay beautiful!
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