This Is Fine

In July 2016, a major wildfire started in the back country of Big Sur, California. As a member of the community there, this was the beginning of a very intense year for us.

Some community involvement went into the making of this illustration. When the wildfire started, a printout of KC Green's "This is Fine" meme showed up on a supervisor's door.  It was perfect and hilarious (and never got old), especially for us living on the edge of a real fire. Later, when the winter rains started, an anonymous colleague put up a photoshopped version of Green's dog sitting on The Great Wave by Hokusai. More reason to laugh when walking by.

The foreground of my image represents the story of little Ellis the dog, who got snatched up by a mountain lion near his home while wearing his football sweater. Moments later, thinking he was gone forever, he came running back home! ...without his sweater.

During the winter, the river flooded, redwoods fell, the forest cleared its debris and sent it down the river, down hillsides and down the road. The cliffs crumbled onto Highway 1, blocking our only way in and out. Then the bridge collapsed, leaving miles of Highway 1, its residents and favorite businesses cut off. We were living in a disaster zone.

And yet we stayed.