Bonny John via Kotaku
Bonny John via Kotaku

The Pokemon illustrations will be posted side by side, although this new one will only last 2 weeks or so.

Illustration for article titled Start of a new illustration series!

Bonny John x HONY (Humans of New York) Illustration Series

*Unofficial crossover until Brandon Stanton of Humans of New York gives me the OK lol*

I wanted to start this series up on Monday, as it was the start to the new week but I realized this Wednesday, today, is a more special and better fitting time to release my art.

I’m sure you’ve been made aware, by the news on your TV, your friends Facebooks posts, and your memories that today is 9/11.

I was in Queens, NY at that time, in 7th grade in Mr. Herrara’s class at M.S 172. I remember exactly when another teacher, one who I did not know, barged into the classroom without any sort of remorse at interrupting the class. He had a worried look, and my classmates were looking around, whispering to one another. I had heard something happened, in the city, and that was all I knew coming into the classroom.


Moments before someone in my class had been called out to leave as their parents had arrived to pick them up. I didn’t think much of it, but throughout the day, I would the halls littered with kids leaving their classes mid session.

The two teachers spoke for a moment before the other teacher waved at us with a smile, a smile painted on to mask his true emotion, I’m sure. Mr. Herrara looked at all of us before taking a deep breath. He began to explain what had happened, and it was really kind of a surreal thing to hear. I was lost in the reaction of the class before returning my attention to Mr. Herrera.


He explained to us what he knew…It scared me because we were still in the dark, and it scared me because I knew my father was working in the city. As a traffic agent for the NYPD, I wondered where he was, how he was doing.

For the rest of the day, that long school day, it was all I could think about.

Students’ parents were flocking to the school to pick up their children, and I wondered if my dad never showed up because of the worst. My mom could not drive, and we didn’t have cell phones so I had no chance to quell any fears.

Anyway, I think I’ll stop there. My dad is alright, and just retired from the NYPD which is why we’re here in Florida now…and is the reason how I started this project.

It’s been 2 months and eleven days since we’ve moved to central Florida. I was born and raised in Queens, New York, and stayed in the state my whole life. We’ve moved around apartment to apartment 14 times, with the 14th being the first time we owned a home. Moving is a hobby for us, and even the place we’re staying at in Florida is temporary.

That said, I began working on this series, inspired by photographs as taken by Brandon Stanton, the man behind “Humans of New York” to combat my home sickness.

Here on 9/11, I want to honor the Humans of New York, who braved the worst they had ever seen. I want to honor the men and women who lost their lives, who never clocked out that day…The heroes who went above and beyond what their jobs asked and made the ultimate sacrifice. I want to honor those heroes who were fortunate enough to do their jobs and return home to their families. I want to honor the tri-state county, and the rest of the US, the rest of the world who shared their compassion, warm wishes, and strength to help the city and state of New York to stand back up and rebuild.

That is why I wanted to share this project today. Please look forward to the rest of the series, and thanks for your time.



Share This Story

Get our newsletter