This piece, an interpolation of both Anderson Paak’s Malibu and Tyler the Creator’s Flower Boy album covers, was inspired by my summer abroad with FSU International Programs in London. The 8 weeks I spent in London with the FSU Psych program were some of the most exciting, novel, and culturally enriching experiences of my life. The painting is littered with tons of “easter eggs” of different memorable items/places from the summer, such as the signpost from the FSU Study Centre on 99 Great Russell Street, an Oyster card for use on in the tube station, and a pizza box from the local joint I would frequent near the Study Centre. The painting also features some of the classic staples of the city of London, such as the Tower Bridge and the red double decker bus. I was also fortunate enough to take a trip to Italy during the week break between class sessions with my newfound friends, so a Venezian gondola, the Roman Colosseum and Michelangelo’s David also all make an appearance. The vibrant warm colors of the sunset paired with the cool ocean blues are reflective of the variety of opportunities, emotions, and experiences I had during my summer abroad.
Amidst all of the iconography and memorabilia from the summer, I painted myself in the middle, gazing out towards the waves, reflecting on all of the amazing memories I had made, and how much growth I had undergone in such a short time. I entered the trip going on my first flight alone, my first time overseas, without knowing a single person. I left the trip having had a once-in-a-lifetime adventure, as an honorary Londoner who was familiar with many different aspects of the city, and friendships that will last far beyond the summer.