Mixed Media Monday‘s challenge this week came from Redlan. He invited us to create a piece that represents our country. I thought about recycling my Obama portrait. It shows a number of milestones in U.S. history. Growth and change in my country in which I can take pride. I also considered trying to represent our music, or our art, or our food. But we are a melting pot, and proud of it. I couldn’t narrow any of those down enough to do justice.

Finally, I thought about an attitude/belief that seemed to come out in the latest election: while most Americans live in cities, we see ourselves as rural. We consider ourselves a people of big open spaces. We see ourselves as the heartland. We like to believe we are as wild and open and beautiful as much of the nation’s western regions still remain.

But we keep building. We keep encroaching on our wild places. We are urban.

I took a quote from The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn that, I think shows how much we want to stay rural, agrarian, free, “I reckon I got to light out for the Territory ahead of the rest, because Aunt Sally she’s going to adopt me and sivilize me, and I can’t stand it. I been there before.”

And from that quote, I got this: