When we lived in the city, I used to love taking bike rides to different neighbourhoods across town to take pictures of whatever I happened to see there. It's one of my favourite ways to blow off steam and seek inspiration from wherever I happen to be at that moment.
When Monica and I made the move to the city's east end, we crossed the Don Valley Parkway into the neighbourhood of Leslieville. Our house was very close to what is called the Leslie Spit, a sort of barren but beautiful bit of land that juts out about 5 kms into Lake Ontario. Actually, it's a man-made headland that has become an officially recognized and protected "Important Bird Area".
[*Fun Fact - it's also served as the set for a dystopian village in Jason Momoa's series See. ]
You can watch and observe all kinds of birds along the spit - herons, cormorants, terns, and of course, seagulls (along with other kinds of gulls, like the ring-billed gull, or the herring gull).
One day as I was biking along the paths, I could see what looked like thousands of seagulls all clustered on one beach, squawking and strutting and fluttering around the rocks and fallen logs. It was such a perfect scenario for taking pictures.
That day sparked my interest in seagulls as photographic subjects. It was inevitable that they would one day wind up on the graphic designs for our tees.
The image we ended up using for or our one and only royal blue tee came out of another more impromptu photo session I had with these mighty birds down in Nathan Phillips Square in the heart of TO. It was during one of the city's summer art shows, The Artist Project, where I had a booth with my glass work. I usually bring my camera with me pretty much everywhere, and of course, where there's people and street food, there's seagulls, so lucky me was able to catch this little gem of a pic during a lull in foot traffic.
The particular guy just captured that stoic type of seagull stance that is also totally ridiculous because, you know, he's a seagull. Anyway, something about him seems to resonate with other folks too, because he's been a steady seller ever since we introduced him into the collection a couple of years ago!
Also, we both believe now that seagulls are our two year old's spirit animal. They share similar 'gimme gimme' qualities, especially when it comes to french fries. Also, he just gets totally mesmerized and excited whenever he sees one. So, obviously we made a kids version of the tee. And it's yet another reason to keep the Seagull in our classic line.