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Goodbye old friend

Started a big clean up the other day – it’s not spring here, but it felt like the time was right. Anyway, I had to do the hardest thing and say goodbye to my first pair of Doc Martens. I stopped wearing them years ago – the soles were completely shot – holes deeper than the smallest crevasses in Antarctica, absolutely no tread left, inners worn away and because they have been lurking in the back of my cupboard for so long, a mildew pattern covered the surface. I only kept them for sentimental reasons, but I need the closet space. So I thought what better way to keep them with me forever, is by honouring them in ink.

I bought them in 1990, I asked my friend Matt to come along and help me pick out a pair. It was probably from a store long since gone. I had bought a few others since then, particularly on a trip to the UK years later – but they were never as comfortable as this pair. I wore them every “wear” – backpacking around Greece and France, parties, funerals, might have snuck them into a wedding. Countless, countless concerts. At one point I even strung a silver ankh onto one of the shoelaces and it bounced around my heel (I did the wraparound shoelace technique) – It must have been in the days of reading Neil Gaiman’s Death (I looved Chris Bachalo‘s work).

So adieu! Thanks for the memories in my most formative years. You stayed strong and were always there for me. However, you did let in a lot of water in your declining years. But all is forgiven, and now, even in your last moments of life you have provided me with inspiration to draw. Goodbye old friend, nice knowing you.

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15 comments on “Goodbye old friend

  1. Beautiful drawings and love your story! Great way to honour a pair of Docs.

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  2. What a great idea for a drawing and it is fun to read about your history with these boots! Docs are great!

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  3. How have I never been here before? LOVE your site (and your docs). I have a pair of leather short boots that I bought in Italy YEARS ago that I am not yet ready to part with even if I were to sketch them. I did concieve of the notion to sketch family heirlooms with a jotting of history alongside. Must get back to that and do it one day. Tell you what…you do it and I’ll be so impressed I’ll follow suite. LOL

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  4. Hi Susan,
    I actually started thinking about that after I finished the drawings – although my family dont have any heirlooms, I do have a lot of stuff that is borderline keepsake or junk. There are things I definitely wouldn’t throw out, but there’s a lot that has a little sentimental value. And it would be good to jot down the history behind it. Maybe that’s one for later this year… you could get a head start if you like. 🙂

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  5. Wow! You lion dance?! That’s super awesome! =) I don’t do either Lion or Line dancing..I am one of those who sit at the corner and watch people dancing. I just don’t feel like stepping on people’s feet and slapping people around everytime I raise my long arms ^^
    Anyway, love your ink sketches! I honestly do not own a pair or Doc Marts(due to the price range, and practicality…. I don’t think they are comfortable to wear in tropical climates such as Malaysia and Louisiana), but I’ve always loved them. I’ve been thinking if they are even good for work, and shoe ventilation has to be my biggest concern.. so I am not really sure. I guess I am just happy with my Timberland at work and Crocs at home for the moment

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  6. great way to immortalize them! I should satrt cleaning out way more stuff!

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  7. A moving tribute to a pair of faithful friends with these lines 😉
    Sue

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  8. I am not saying Timberlands are bad… Doc Marts got some coolness that cannot be replaced that’s all =)

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  9. Great ink drawings! I like the lines in middle one especially. Realised I’d been drawing my DMs on the same day too, though they’re not old enough to have much of a story yet…

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  10. I’m in awe! Your sketches are excellent, so competent & assured.

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  11. Love these!! I really want to draw an old pair of work boots to add to my shoe drawing collection. Yours are really well done!! Great job!

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