Here’s something you don’t read on our blog every day.
We love Costa Rica. That’s an obvious statement and a fact you likely gathered for yourself within the first five seconds of visiting our website. But, what you may not know about us—what we don’t overtly post on our blog—is that we adore so much more. We are explorers, entrepreneurs, bilinguists, and writers, yes, but you may be surprised to learn that Ricky is also a licensed kayaker with a keen eye for landscaping who enjoys thrift shopping, and I am also a martial artist with a creative soul who enjoys icing desserts but hates baking them. As much as we may be a team of resourceful Costa Rica travel experts to you, we may be something else—such as a rescuer, designer, consumer, training partner, creator, decorator, or otherwise—to someone else, and that concept warms our hearts; we walk miles in the many shoes that we fill, as they always lead us in directions we desire and are proud to follow.
From time to time, we come across other individuals who happily stroll along their own paths with bricks laid in a multitude of directions. I have a soft spot in my heart for creative souls similar to my own—writers, artists, musicians, and other imaginative sorts who rely on their own instinct, talent, flow, and skill to create something never before seen; people who confidently dare to draft and decidedly accept the challenge to craft. My nephew is one of these individuals, and he recently introduced me to another: Josiah Brooks (a.k.a., Jazza).
Jazza is an insanely talented Australian artist available for hire at Jazza Studios. His professional work spans the gaming, illustration (drawing and painting), and animation industries, but his presence on YouTube is what is most impressive; not for the high degree of social media buzz he has stirred up or the countless number of helpful art tutorials he has published for public use, but because his entire channel phenomenon grew from a seed of belief he once planted in himself and his abilities.
It is a reality of our day and age that not everyone has the ability, opportunity, right, or luxury to be who they are, and for an infinite number of reasons. However, when I first discovered Jazza and the impact he is making on his community of followers—my nephew included—I was overwhelmed by his can-do attitude, the attention he pays to hard work, and his courage to not shy away from talking about the often difficult realities of life as a freelance artist. I found it refreshing to learn from someone who isn’t afraid to admit that earning an income from one’s passion can be a challenge, and who willingly chooses to drive along that shoulder riddled with cracks, potholes, and speed bumps than opt to take the easier road that coasts along a different and possibly uninspiring, probably uninteresting, and arguably more secure course. His video titled “Not Good Enough” is an excellent starting point for budding artists embarking on the rough ride of following their dream, who perhaps suffer from self-doubt, and who long to solidify their own roots in the land of success.
“Just as we do not hesitate to recognize Costa Rican businesses when they have developed an ingenious creation or made a difference in our world, we don’t limit ourselves to the confines of travel and tourism discourse when we come across work conducted in other disciplines that is equally worthy of recognition.”
~ Nikki & Ricky,
Costa Rica Travel Blog
So, what on earth does this blog post have to do with travel. Well, truth be told, not much, apart from the fact that this article relays a theme that is ever-present in our writings about Costa Rica: that credit should always be awarded when credit is due. Just as we do not hesitate to recognize Costa Rican businesses when they have developed an ingenious creation or made a difference in our world, we don’t limit ourselves to the confines of travel and tourism discourse when we come across work conducted in other disciplines that is equally worthy of recognition. Hence why we are happy to give a virtual high-five to Jazza; to acknowledge the progress he is making in the world of art and commend the influence he has on others who dream to explore it.
I mentioned previously that my nephew is responsible for my awareness of Jazza. Undoubtedly, both individuals possess an artistic ability that is as inherent in their DNA as their eye colour or their blood type; as intrinsic a quality as compassion or benevolence. I reached out to Jazza recently for his help in surprising my nephew with an elementary school graduation gift. To my astonishment, he responded quickly and exceeded my expectations with his generosity. His kindness was the perfect bow atop our gift, which was a collection of items purchased from Jazza Studios including face and anatomy drawing e-books, tutorial archive access, artwork archive access, and the fun new Arty Games application. Needless to say, my nephew was thrilled with the gift, and Ricky and I loved giving it to him as much as we enjoyed supporting the work of a freelance artist—and all-around nice mate—in the process.
Follow Jazza at @JosiahBrooks, subscribe to his Draw With Jazza YouTube channel for “how-to” art resources, or entertain yourself with his silly shenanigans via Daily Jazza. If you don’t do so for your own professional development or in support of the freelance work movement, do it for the dancing monkey and his arty party maracas.