Makana: A Tribute

Posted on Jun 29, 2012 in Blog, Personal

Today’s painting is a little different from the usual. It’s not for building up my portfolio, or for a promo piece. It’s not to practice improving my craft, to try some new technique, or to impress anyone. It is to remember and honor a friend in the only way that I know how.

Dear Makana,

Just over a year ago, you went hiking on a Colorado mountain and never came home. Last weekend, a group of us made the climb in your honor. We had a small memorial service, and while we were spreading some of your ashes there was a little Gray Jay hanging out nearby, who just never left us. You know, you always reminded me of a bird–light and carefree, flitting from place to place. A jay is perfect; they’re silly and always causing trouble, kind of like you.

Maybe that little jay was with you, Makana, when I couldn’t be. I’m sorry I couldn’t help you. I miss you. I’m glad you spent your last day in such a beautiful place.

Thank you for being my friend.


  1. JessNo Gravatar
    June 29, 2012

    P.S: For friends–if you want a print, let me know. I’m offering the original to Makana’s mom for free if she wants it.

  2. MikeNo Gravatar
    June 30, 2012

    That is beautiful, Jess.

  3. Virginia flemingNo Gravatar
    July 4, 2012

    Very moving…loved the illustration… Interested in illustrating for my children’s book?

    I can’t pay til the book sells…

  4. Melani HoltonNo Gravatar
    July 5, 2012

    Oh how beautiful! Yes I do want it! I can’t thank you enough!!!! It is beyond special and so incredible!!!!

  5. Melani HoltonNo Gravatar
    July 9, 2012

    This is Makana’s mom. I would love the picture!!!

  6. JessNo Gravatar
    July 26, 2012

    Sorry for the delay, Melani–I’ll get it in the mail to you this week. I’ve removed your personal info so it isn’t out on the internet for all to see, but I have it written down here. Thanks!

  7. Alice RatterreeNo Gravatar
    August 29, 2012

    Oh i love this! such a beautiful memory. And I think it can definitely be used in the folio

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