Instagram Artist Love: Mari Andrew

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I'm sure all of you have a handful of creative folk you've discovered on Instagram that you've then shared with your inner circle because you love them so much. Mari Andrew happens to be at the top of my personal list and if you don't know her already she's definitely worth inserting into your feed.

Mari (rhymes with starry for the phonetically curious) has a pretty wonderful story about how she managed to garner nearly 600K followers on Instagram by documenting the rollercoaster of life through whimsical illustrations. Be it death, terrible dates, simple pleasures, and the dangers of creative vulnerability, Mari gives us all the confidence to stop saying and start doing. She's always had a knack for writing but she's just recently made her foray into illustrating upon going through a personally challenging time two years ago. Endeavoring to find a passion that could help her out of a rut she dabbled with learning the guitar, salsa dancing, surfing and cooking but drawing is the only one that managed to stick and bring her the joy she was missing. Mari made a personal pact to create one drawing a day for one year and post her work to Instagram. It's the best tipping point story anyone could wish for in that through simple word of mouth she's caught the attention of nearly 1.2MM eyeballs.

Just recently, Mari took a trip to Spain with the intention of working on her memoir but was stopped short with a sudden health scare in the diagnosis of Guillain-Barré syndrome, a rare immune disorder leaving her temporarily paralyzed. Mari's illustrations have shifted a bit from artfully portraying the light and dark of grief and breakups to now shedding light on the challenges a health issue presents on the mind and body. We thank Mari for the amazing inspiration she serves to anyone going through whatever life throws at us and just how resilient the mind can be over the body.

I value optimism, resilience, vulnerability, and joie de vivre. I do not value "having chill." I'm originally from Seattle, my favorite city is Rio de Janeiro, and I identify strongly with zebras. They always look like they're doing their own thing and having a great time.

Instagram Artist

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Hi NY

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It's "Miss" or nothing

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Selfie

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Houston ❤️

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"You're furthering the divide" shuts down necessary conversations about the truly horrific divisions in our society: Black women make 67 cents to a white man's dollar, unarmed kids get murdered by police, the life expectancy of a black trans woman is 35 years old, our schools are segregated, and torch-bearing white supremacists just terrorized a city. • When someone raises "divisiveness" as a rebuttal against acknowledgement of inequality, I ask, "So what are you doing to promote equality in a 'non-divisive' way?" They always respond, "I try to be a good person." • Well I don't think a good person is complicit in a system that oppresses minorities. I'm sure there were plenty of "good people" complicit in the Holocaust and slavery because they didn't want to ruffle any feathers. • Reminder to myself: White people NEED to talk to each other about racism. And not just to like-minded progressive friends on Twitter. Because divisiveness that leads to tension between you and your "good-hearted" racist aunt is tolerable, but divisiveness that leads to white supremacist marches is unconscionable.

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Written by

Ibby Sasso

Wife, mom, "writer", pun lover, wannabe memory champion, candle and handwriting connoisseur. Public Relations veteran, most recently as director of PR, I oversaw global strategic communications for one of the most iconic American brands, Levi's. I like to travel and talk :P

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