Hayley and I in a Taco Bell bathroom after Warped Tour is one of the very few photos I have as evidence. Circa 2009.
Fortunately after almost all of my friends lost interest, I begin dating someone who manages a few bands who played the tour this past summer. A 23 year old with a good excuse to go to Warped Tour? The 16 year old inside of me wouldn't have believed it.
A pic of me when I really liked Warped Tour, circa 2010.
As though I couldn't be more excited, my favorite magazine as a teenager - Alternative Press - asked me to create their "Midway Map": an illustrated list of various Warped Tour sponsors that lives inside their free mini magazine and is handed out all cross-country tour long. Surprised and honored, I jumped at the chance and started sketching according to their suggestion of "people zoo" theme. Here's one:
When I started my Warped Tour phase, my feelings about drawing people where 100% unhappy. My comfort zone was cartoon animals and monsters - but I struggled immensely when trying to draw a person. I started drawing everyone in my classes, at school events, etc. The drawing classes I took helped inform and continued to shape what I was doing.
First attempt of filling a page with people doodles, also circa 2010.
After years of observation drawing, I was finally comfortable with making cartoon people! To imagine getting a "people zoo" theme and not being overwhelmed by the challenge would be even harder for 16 year old me to believe than the fact I'd get the chance to tour the Alternative Press office in Cleveland! Or that I'd still be looking forward to Warped Tour 2016.