Sam, Christina, and I have returned from an unbelievably refreshing week in Costa Rica. We spent a lot of our time with Christina's cousins, who live in San José and Puerto Viejo, and I visited a town on the Pacific side that I had never been to, Manuel Antonio. We hiked through the national park, saw a sloth, monkeys, and alien-like plants that blew my mind. A storm was rolling in, so the waves were super fun to bodysurf. We spent the second half of our trip on the Caribbean side, which is my paradise. I wanted to spend so much more time in the jungle than we did, but hey. It was a stellar trip, I love Costa Rica more every time I visit, and once again, I'm annoyed that my younger self never felt the drive to become fluent in Spanish. Maybe it's not too late? I am so grateful for the hospitality of Christina's cousins, Adriano & Paula in San José and Esteban in Puerto Viejo, and we were all grateful to have gotten to spend almost a full week with all of them. Here are some of the photos I took on our trip! I wanted to document all the hand-made lettering I saw, but the best ones were on signs we passed driving and I wasn't about to hold up the caravan for pics (though typography always warrants a travel delay, IMO). ¡Pura Vida!
I drew this when we were driving back to San José from Puerto Viejo. I've been listening to a lot of Shabba Ranks, Damien Marley, and the likes lately and keep hearing "divided we stand, united we fall" in the lyrics of these Jamaican artists. I'd never really contemplated this phrase I've heard all my life as an American student until now— maybe because it feels astonishingly relevant at this moment in our society, with the division in our country unbearable, suffocating, and encouraged almost daily by our leader(s). I had this image of letters hand-carved into hand-made stone and concrete churches and schools. Maybe I saw a lot of that on the Caribbean coast or maybe it was on my mind from the constant parade of news images of Hurricane Irma engulfing the Caribbean islands. Anyways, I wanted to recreate the sharpness of those letters. I was picturing something resembling United Sans, but my chubby pen didn't allow for the crisp edges I envisioned. It still felt really empowering for some reason to meditate on and gain some gratitude for this concept.