Wednesday, April 7, 2010


"You should have a box of crayons," my mom told me during their visit.

"I don't think we need crayons just yet," I replied.

"Not for kids," she explained, "but for when you need a 'creative break'. It's good to take a few minutes and do something mindless, you know, like play with Play-Dough or draw a picture. It helps you be more creative and stay focused."

"Hmm." Once an art teacher, always an art teacher, I guess.

So when we stopped at the store for some groceries, she threw a big box of crayons into the cart. "This is for you and Brian," she told me.

"You don't have to buy us crayons, Mom," I said, laughing.

"I want to!" she argued. And so that was that.

But I'll admit, it was invigorating to open that box and admire its array of colors, to breathe in the smell of new crayons. There aren't many childhood experiences that visit you the same way when you're an adult, but this was one. When we got home, I brought down a stack of copy paper from my office and we all sat at the dining room table and just colored.

A couple days later, when my family pulled out of the driveway and I waved goodbye and called Bo reluctantly back into the house, I saw our stack of crayon pictures lying on the countertop. Looking through them, I got a kick out of how each one nearly perfectly represented the person who'd drawn it.

If you know my family, you might see the same thing. (You can click on any of the photos for a closer look. If, you know, you have the time to waste.)

These are the "kids' collaborations". Erin and I started them; Joel and Matthew finished.

This WAS a cute little lady-smiley-face... until they impaled her with an enormous shark tooth.

This WAS a pretty, smiley-face princess... until she was stabbed with a primitive street-knife. I'm loving all this blood. Notice the blood-shot eyes - a thoughtful touch.

And THIS was Matthew's brilliance. It WAS a flower and a heart. But the boy turned it into an alligator and a man-eating flesh pit with jagged teeth, not unlike what you would see in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi.

Below is Joel's artwork, a crafty rendition of his girlfriend's initials. After drawing this, he immediately texted Dayna to tell her about it. "Aww," she said. "Bring it home! I want to keep it!" Isn't that darling? (Too bad he forgot it!)

Below is Matthew's creation, a single-sheet birthday card for my mom - with Spanish flair! The front can be roughly translated, "Happy Birthday of Mother!" The reverse (below it) is an intricate, Taco Bell-inspired design. Ole!

Here is my attempt at being artsy and abstract. I call this "God and the Devil". I'd like to say that it was intended to be a commentary on the perception of religion and the human psyche, blah blah blah, but really, eyes are the only thing I can remotely draw.

This is my mom's design. She disgusted us all with her artistic perfection.

And finally, my dad's work, which veritably screams, graphic designer!!!! Ladies and gents, my dad, down to the final crayon-stroke:

And where, you may wonder, are Erin's drawings? Apparently, they were so remarkable that she brought them home with her to distribute to her friends as souvenirs. At least I can give her credit for thrift. But her loss, I suppose, is absence from this eternal gallery.


  1. Maegan I like how you described each one, this was very interesting and I had a fun time reading these. I hope I'll get an offer from Taco Bell some time soon for permission to use my art work, but in the meantime I'll have to resort to day dreaming about Taco Bell giving me an offer. Any way thanks for the interesting assessment of our art, and I hope you guys can come to the big MI some time soon.

  2. HAhahaha. At least a free meal, right? I hope we can come soon, too.

  3. man, what f-u-n! we should do this at our place...