Tag Archives: mental illness

a star reborn

Jetpack Jesus is one of my favorite cartoon characters to draw from my childhood. I invented him in 2003 or 2004 and used to draw him quite often. The details of how he came into being are fuzzy now. He is the mascot of this blog because he defines the purpose of this website in a nutshell: daily renewal through creativity, or salvation, if you will. He’s a good guy and his existence is a little ironic if not idiotic. Creativity is all about having fun, stomping out fear, and exploring new frontiers whether they are awesome, quirky, or frankly repelling.

cartoon

Why does he have a jetpack? you might ask. You might’ve asked the wrong question. Either way the answer is ‘Because I gave him one.’

Origin: When I was about the age of fourteen I was admitted to a mental institution in the children’s ward basically for having too much apathy for the nonsensical, extremely flawed school system that I attended. [At 22 I realize that the core of the problem was a lack of challenge on their part, a lack of drive on mine.] During my two week stay at the institution I made good friends with an eight-year-old girl. She was in the smaller-children’s ward and was there for lacking a will to live. I did a lot of drawing in those days and so one day I handed her a picture of Jetpack Jesus and told her that whenever she felt sad or that she didn’t want to live, to look at the picture and it would act as proof that she had a good friend somewhere. After I was free from that place I didn’t draw Mr. Jesus very often. In fact, this drawing here [scanned and Photoshopped of course] is the first recreation in eight years, give or take.

Creativity comes in many unexpected forms. This unlikely form resurfaced from long ago. I never thought I would draw Jetpack Jesus again, but at the suggestion of a friend he suddenly transformed into a worthy mascot for creativity. He’s got gusto! He’s got silliness! He’s got a jetpack!

Q: What is your favorite thing to draw from your childhood? What is your favorite thing to draw now?

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