blogThe Storybook City: A Tampa Tribute

September 26, 2013
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A storybook illustration of how I feel about and see my city.

Those that know me, know how much I love my hometown. I am one of few natives (of my generation, anyhow) that takes pride in being from Tampa. This piece was made to read as a storybook illustration of how I feel about and see the city.
The Breakdown:
The Pirate: As a child, I would attend the Gasparilla invasion/parade almost every year. It was a family event and on that provided lasting memories. From a young age, I would see these pirates invading and imagine myself as one of them. The figure in the right corner is representation of that ideal female pirate, the one I saw myself as when I was a child. Her gaze upon the city is meant to replicate how I look at it. Each time I would see that downtown skyline, I felt a sense of comfort and happiness. That cluster of building makes me know that I’m home and reminds me how much I love living in Tampa, especially when I’m arriving in from another city. All of the other elements in this piece are significant to Tampa life…for me. Oranges: Typical Florida, but also holds fond memories for me personally. Growing up, there was a sour orange tree in our backyard. I would climb it all the time and when the orange blossoms were in bloom, I couldn’t stay out of it. That smell will forever remind me of home. Flowers: I have always loved the colors of Florida flowers. Even just the wildflowers that grow on the side of the road. The lantana in particular are special to me. To this day, I fear them because my grandmother used to tell me they were poisonous. OCD me thought that meant I would get sick or die by even touching a leaf. Come to find out, she just didn’t want me picking her pretty flowers. Cypress and moss: I have spent a good chunk of time in the waterways of the Tampa Bay area, especially in the rivers. Any freshwater trip is lined with Cypress and Spanish Moss. Alligator, Sandhill Crane and Seagull: These are all animals that I’ve had some sort of scare with. Although I think all three are beautiful creatures, they still frighten me. The seagull especially.

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