The internet image sensation of a mitted-clad Bernie Sanders Photoshopped in landmarks has resulted in a Vancouver Island artist following in the U.S. senator’s footsteps.
A day after the image from the U.S. inauguration went viral, Sanders began selling sweatshirts of the infamous image through his website for $45US, with 100 per cent of proceeds going to Meals on Wheels Vermont in his home state.
Comox Valley musician and artist Daisy Melville, who has been creating watercolours for years, sent her mom – musician Helen Austin – her painted portrait of Sanders from the inauguration, legs crossed, sporting a blue mask and mittens prominently featured on his crossed hands.
“I loved it, so I had a very proud parent moment and put it on Facebook,” explained Austin, who said Melville shies away from the spotlight, however, her love of painting has developed throughout the years.
“She always painted little drawings; there were sayings from Doctor Who and she would make pictures to go with it. She has just a love of painting but mostly does landscapes.”
Austin said she quickly got inquires from the images as soon she posted it; people began commenting how they wanted it on a t-shirt.
That’s when she decided to make an online store, and Austin wanted a shirt as well. She turned to Redbubble, an online marketplace for print-on-demand products based on user-submitted artwork. She created the store Sunday (Jan. 24), similar to what Sanders did for his merchandise. Based on Melville’s request not to profit from the artwork, all proceeds from the sale of shirts, sweaters, tote bags and more will go to the Comox Valley Food Bank.
So far, there have been six orders (“more than I expected!” said Austin), but she noted there are no expectations or fundraising goals.
“If we can make some money and people can have some nice t-shirts, then that’s great. I’m really proud (of Daisy).”
To view the online store, visit https://rdbl.co/2MoHZNT