It's Better to Die on Your Feet, Than to Live Life on Your Knees.

It's Better to Die on Your Feet, Than to Live Life on Your Knees.

Manon Louis-Puttick

This is a piece of art work drawn by myself inspired by a man called Stuart Brown, who had a huge influence on my life. Teaching me to project my voice, thoughts and feelings, he ingrained a stubbornness and love of life within me. The determination, and belief he held in every single person he met, whether loud, lost or left behind was the magical way he pulled you out of your skin to do more; live your best life. Stuart died of cancer a few years ago now, yet he never gave up the light and excitement in his eyes, or faith in people. Express yourself, and soak up every little bit of life around you - there is always more to you than you think. Stuart lived on Dartmoor and loved it, hence drawing with biro (capturing the essence of the every day), and weaving his face into the map of Dartmoor only using the contour lines on the page to create his face. This was my way of finding something out of nothing, creating the wonderful essence that he had and found in so many people, when they could not themselves. I have never met a man who radically changed so many peoples lives in such a little way, his values became the core of my own as I learnt the power and achievement of acceptance, stubborn love of life and the infinite opportunities out there when you open your mind to it and other people. 
Stuart's quote, which he reminded us of close to his death 'it is better to die on your feet, than to live life on your knees' rings through me as I remember the true importance of never giving up. An easy, unchallenging life is no life at all, barely even grasps the true, incredible thing life can be. Stuart opened my eyes and heart to this and I am ever grateful to the veil he removes from people's minds. It is a true talent to intercept and change a persons values. The flow of the drawing through the map represents the forces through life intertwining people and places as Stuart did.

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