Jonny Jonny, what can I say. I met Jonny at Oregon Country Fair in 2014 at Fairy Market. I didn’t realize this until later but Jonny was the only guy camping in our section. There were about 25 women in camp that year. I have grown to respect Jonny as my friend and as an artist. And this is my ode to my friend, who, for the first time, will be in an entirely different city than me over this summer.
Jonny’s first love is art. His girlfriend is art. His world, in it’s entirety, is art.
Once he got sick and I went to visit him at the hospital. I knocked on the door and I heard Jonny say “oh, yeah, come in.” I took a deep breath and I prepared myself to walk into a morose situation. Tubes up his nose, sitting in the hospital gown, I saw him sitting upright with a sketch pad in his lap and heard his phone playing music. He was making beats and drawing. Per usual. Nothing about the environment or circumstances compromised his art.
Man if there’s a layout on how to build your artist empire I tell you, Jonny is the one who’s designing it. I have respect for his person and his work ethic. He’s taught me a lot about never using anything excuse not to create. I’ve watched him be homeless, walk through losing a parent, uncertainties, fears, no phone, no food, no resources and not once did he give up. He tells me, “You can’t give up. You have to remember that you are here to create and give that to the world. You might be what people are praying for.” Above everything he always encourages me to create and for me that’s a rare thing. It’s important to surround yourself with folks who truly believe in you.
Ultimately though, I just love being with my friend and acting like little kids. All the laughs, all the impersonations, doing Bill Cosby dances or the worm, all the Michael Jackson songs and dances, all the philosophical conversations, the food truck gyros and sharing french fries, creating poetry with the word magnets while riding the elevator, trips to Seattle to see Princess Nokia and punk bands, to watching the starlight parade from the fourth floor. Always listening to the lullaby of the beat of a drum.