LJ Swanepoel Art | Portrait of an old friend
Created illustration with ink and brush of an old friend, on paper. I missed her and loved her, she was my best friend. I made this portrait of her.
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Love for an Old Friend

Ink of Friend

About This Project

When you truly miss someone you love, especially your best friend, you, as an artist needs to express it in a way. That’s what I did here.


Things ended badly between us, after years of an on-and-off friendship. She was my best friend and really the only woman I ever loved since 2010. She never wanted to be in a relationship with me. I was the weak one. One day, after another year of parting ways, she declared her love to me. One can only imagine the joy I felt at that time. The downside was that we were separated by 1200km. Neither of us had the money to at least fly over and see each other, so we stuck to mostly instant messaging (which we both liked to do), and few phone calls. This was mistake one, in my opinion.


Mistake two was that we basically went into an unofficial relationship from the moment she said she loved me. I say unofficial, because I never asked her out, but we chatted with kisses and “I love you” phrases. The problem was that we haven’t seen each other for more than just over a year. We agreed on building our friendship first before getting romantically involved, but neither of us stopped the romance – at least I didn’t. I am greatly to be blamed.


Because we didn’t know or saw each other for more than a year and got romantically involved, we both expected more from each other than what we were able to provide; that resulted in frustrating the other person more and more. This eventually lead to her having a panic attack, me angry, and she pulled out. I don’t hold it against her any more, but we were both mortified after that. A year later, in September 2017, I was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome / High Functioning Autism / Mild Autism, which made me realize that the diagnoses also affected our situation in a major way.


I still missed her a heck lot, thinking about her every day.¬†Three months after our separation I created this artwork as an expression of my longing for her. I wrote poems about her too. I continued to miss her until around April 2017. Not long after, I officially said I’m over her and moved on with my life.


Drawing Ink and Brush