All posts filed under: Childhood Memories

October 22, 2008

Childhood Memories

“Oh, I Got an Indian Arrow Head.”

I’ve been keen on the idea of comparing my childhood drawings against my adult drawings; for some reason lately I fancy comparing past and present. I suppose I am performing my own analysis of who I was versus who I am and I’m using my drawings to help connect the dots between the two. As with most of me, I’ve changed 700 Billion times over the last three decades. For example, on top below is an image I drew in 2008. Image on the bottom is one I drew in 1989- I believe I drew my little sister as she slept in church as an infant. Now given these two images side by side, one area I’ve isolated that I can site as a difference between then and now is my attention to detail. When I was a kid (in 1989 for example) I tried to be so realistic and perfect. Now, nearly 20 years later, my attention to detail has deteriorated much like a lot of my pre-programmed mindsets.

One constant, however, is the heart shows up in polar decades.



a robot with one eye riding on a parade float

Tonight I sat down on a Sushi train at a hole-in-the-wall spot round old town. I was by myself and I got sandwiched between a guy and a girl on either side of me. The guy to my right was on a date with another girl on his right and he kept checking his email on his phone. He kept apologizing to the girl. He kept saying stuff like, “I just have to check, or… it just makes me go crazy… I can’t stop thinking about it…” She would kindly acknowledge his genuine yet remorseless disclaimer, but you could tell by the tone of her response that she was like, “dude, turn that phone off or I am going to shove that gawdamn Inariroll in your ear…” The girl to my left was with a threesome of Sushi-goers. She was wearing a long burgundy trench coat, the girl next to her had a nose ring and visible tattoos, and the guy they were with had an unkept red beard and a forest green T on. Why am I saying all of this?

To bring this story back to center, lately, I’ve been pondering that in any given 24 hour period you see, hear, smell, taste and experience so much. For example, in the last 24 hours I’ve had lunch with a friend and talked about Russian political strategy, I had tea with a friend and talked about dogs with nerve damage, I walked about 4 miles through the city and I took the light rail several times (as I witnessed the city at 30mph), I ducked into numerous vintage shops and scouted out my Halloween costume components, I worked, I checked emails, I’ve listened to probably 100 songs, and the last 3 nights I’ve slept in a warehouse with a hammer by my side for securities sake, I’ve… ok, I will stop there. All I am saying is that if you pay attention, you realize that in just 24 hours you experience about 24 Million things. Being physically cold then hot, witnessing anger at a traffic stop, getting asked for change, watching political videos online, drinking coffee, smelling grass as you walk by a group of girls outside a bar who are trying to mask the green smell with cigarette smoke, etc. Bottom line, lots is going on. And whether we know/pay attention to it or not, our brain is a big filing cabinet. Everything we experience is stored- some of these memories resurface and others are locked in the vault for good. They all manifest and/or combine differently. And much like our fingerprint, no one has the same experiences as the next person. The guy I sat next to on the train tonight had an entirely different 24 hour period prior to crossing my path tonight.

(Thank you for listening to my mental diarrhea just now)

The image above was one I did about 25 years ago. Judging from the texture of the print, I am going to site the medium as likely finger paint. At first glance (since pulling out of my memory box) I asked myself what it was or what I was trying to draw… I have no idea? A robot with one eye riding on a parade float is as good of a guess as any… any guesses of your own?

October 8, 2008

Childhood Memories

Second and Third Wish.

Wish List

Rough Looking Character.

Beat up
Drew this dilapidated battered body in 1991 when I was 12 years old.
What was I thinking?
Who was I drawing?
Where did the left side go?

October 5, 2008

Childhood Memories

Dear Dad, Halloween, etc.

Me pops is an architect and he is coming to town early next week to meet with a Portland-based design firm he’s been working with on some big “downtown development project.” Indeed, I am excited he’s coming, and on that note, I decided to do a post about him today.

Since I can remember, my dad has worked hard. Having a double digit count of kids has definitely kept his plate full the entire. Growing up, during one period in particular, I remember him working out of town in Seattle- he’d commute every week to make ends meet. I also remember a time when the architecture industry dried up in Wyoming and he ventured out west to Oregon in pursuit of work. He found a job in Portland and in second grade, I moved with him and the rest of the family ‘cross country.

Another fond memory I have is that my dad’s birthday falls shortly after Halloween. Oddly enough, his birthday lands on the same day every year. And in lieu of gifts, all he wanted for his birthday was some of our hard earned trick-or-treat candy. He wanted about 5 pieces from each of us and he loved chocolate and peanuts. Lots of good memories…
Red jumpsuit character I drew in 1986.
Blue jumpsuit Superman I drew in 1990. Of note, I colored him in with my dad’s markers. Dad had a really fancy set of architecture markers that came in about 700 billion colors. They were fun to color with.
During one of my dad’s periods of work related absence, I wrote him the note below.
The letter reads as follows:

Hi dad how are you doing. I hope you find a good house. I love you and miss you to. And gess what I allmost ate all of my trick- or- treating candy. Mom is sending you treats from JARED, TYLER, KYLE, GARETT, CHELSEA and we sent you all kinds of GOODIES. Like SNICKERS, HERSHEYS with ALMONS, and M&M,S and so forth. Mom really misses you BAD! I do to but not quite as much as mom does.
All of the other little boys miss you too.

And guess what I got one A+ and all the rest were A,s. Aren,t you glad. Mom sure is.
And I hope you come home soon.

Dad I miss you. And guess what I was count = dracala.

Mom ses I am trying to be a good boy.

Look read down –> P.S. I LOVE YOU,
from Garett: to dad

October 3, 2008

Childhood Memories

W (upside down) is for Monkey.

This afternoon, I was sitting on the couch in our studio and I was rambling through some old boxes of pictures I’ve drawn both past and present day. I drew the monkey below in 1987 and I drew the W-astronaut-scattered-madness-thing about two months ago in 2008. I set these two drawings aside and decided to post them together today because I thought it was a pretty wild concept how much someone’s personal style/thoughts can change in 21 years…almost as if two entirely different people drew these images. I wonder what I will be drawing about in 2029 if in fact my mind is still communicating with my hands.
Source of picture: unknown… I think I copied this monkey from some kids book or something?
Doodled this one at a coffee shop in NW Portland; on the night before a big day next.

October 2, 2008

Childhood Memories

Hearing, Grapevines, etc.

Me drew the cartoon character above back in 1990. I thought it was a fitting post for today considering the response we’ve gotten since announcing “db clay is going away…”

“I Heard It Through the Grapevine” is a R&B/soul song written by Motown songwriters Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong. The Funk Brothers created the tune. Whitfield recorded several versions with different Motown acts, and two became hits: one by Gladys Knight & the Pips became a number-two hit in the United States in 1967, while the version by Marvin Gaye became a number-one hit in the U.S. and the UK in 1968. Gaye’s version is #80 on Rolling Stone’s list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

Source: Wikipedia

September 30, 2008

Childhood Memories

Crayon Flowers & Watercolor Sky.

Found floral image above in me childhood archives- guessing I was less than five when drawn. I drew the flowers with color crayon and I washed the sky with watercolors. However, upon further review, one thing I noticed is that the waxy composite of the crayon is such that the watercolor’s paint doesn’t stick to it… it actually produces a pretty interesting textured effect: the flowers confidently remain crayon while the watercolor mess just bleeds and fills in everywhere else (that is not crayon).


September 24, 2008

Childhood Memories

Smiling Plate Face.

Paper Plate
Title: “Smiling Plate Face”
Medium: Crayon on White Paper Plate
Artist: Garett Stenson, less than 10 yrs old
Artist Statement: Formerly worn around my young neck and held up with red yarn.

September 23, 2008

Childhood Memories

Fake Identification.

Fake ID
Image above, is of, me’ first Fake ID.

It was made for me when I was seventeen.
My buddy had an entire Fake ID arsenal in his backpack. To parties he’d bring with him a Polaroid camera, a mini printer, and even a laminator. I must say, although surely crude, he actually did a pretty good job of ripping off false identities and paving the path for minors everywhere to illegally buy booze and be reckless before their time.
I only used it one time… and it actually worked.
I used it at a liquor store in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
I was so nervous.

The name I gave myself on the ID was “Tom Ogan…” This was the name of my old football coach…
Oh the memories.

Garett Croft Stenson



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