When I first presented this card to Max on his 5th Birthday, it was the first bad reaction from the boys about any of their cards. He was obviously weirded out by it but tried to put on a twitchy artificial smile; he knew how much time I spent on the things. Those widened eyes told the true story, though. I tried to keep my disappointment, the feeling that I’d failed, to myself and assured him that next year’s would be better.
This year, 2012, while rummaging through some old boxes, a now 12-year-old Max found his old Birthday cards and announced the discovery to me as he walked up holding one. He held it to his chest so I couldn’t see it, and he asked me to guess which one his favorite was. Smiling, I gave him an “I give up” look. He flipped it around and it was him as Dash. I frowned. “I thought that was your least favorite!” He looked down at it and was thoughtful as he said, “No. It was just so strange back then, to see myself like this, but now I see it’s the most unique.” Or some such words that reached into my chest and squeezed my heart. Hugs were had.
The Previous Cards Spider-man and Doc Ock, the ghost twins from The Matrix Reloaded, Star Wars and Cody’s first birthday cards.
Instructional Diagrams See what else I can do in Photoshop.