it’s been a little while now since i’ve been doing patches, and i thought i’d share a bit about what the creative process looks like for me, and one patch that im particularly proud of. obviously, everything starts with a grain of inspiration. for me, i need something very precise and concentrated, a snapshot of what the end product will be-  a black cat, a lightning bolt, a snake- or a vivid mood or experience that i can’t seem to fit into words. my best ideas (to me, anyways) usually come to me when i’m juiced up on caffeine, or walking across the street, or cleaning my room, or working out at the gym, or doing something very mundane and mindless. and the inspiration usually comes to me as a vivid, brief mental picture that’s somewhat like a vision; just a brief little snapshot, that i quickly grab on to and file away into my list of “these are things that i should create someday.”

that’s what happened with the first patch (check the ‘gram to see it) that i made- it was a reoccurring dream that i’ve had throughout my life, and i couldn’t handle just having it loop around in my mind. it’s one of those dreams that somehow predicts and describes your life and person in the most precise manner, and encapsulates some of the most emotional experiences you’ve been through to date. and it’s one of those vivid dreams, that you can remember in detail, and it feels like you’re there, in the dream itself. that’s a pretty heavy burden to have swimming around in your mind, and it was starting to get to me a bit. so one night i was talking about it to my sister, and i came to the conclusion that in order to truly conquer it, maybe i had to create it.

i expected sitting down and trying capture something that’s greatly defined your life in a singular image to be an intense and emotional process. but it really wasn’t. it was lighthearted. and i think the process helped me in more ways than i had originally expected and hoped for. yes, the fear is gone, but my anxiety levels have lowered, my focus is clearer, and in all honesty i feel more grounded in who i am as a person. maybe it’s just because i put a little nightmare on a piece of cloth and can wear it around on my back, but i think moreso because i’ve finally found a way to express all of my emotional energy in a very tangible and symbolic way.

i’ve always found symbolism fascinating, and this particular experience has done nothing but deepen my appreciation for double meanings and all things symbolic. so you can imagine my excitement when someone requested that i create a patch for them that bore some personal significance. that’s the one you see in this post.

it was perhaps one of the most rewarding and fulfilling projects i have ever worked on. i may have cried when i finished it, because to me, it felt like the piece was living and breathing. and then i got to give it away, and let it take on a life completely of its own.

there’s just something about creating an image that also embodies a storyline that satisfies on the deepest of soul levels.

p/c: the illustrious Juan Naula (@juan_naula)