James “Bo”

“Do you want to make God laugh? Tell him your plans...” 

I met James "Bo" McDonald through my friend John at the Santa Ana train station. We spoke briefly and in our conversation we quickly discovered we share a passion for art. Bo considers himself an artist in every aspect of his life. He creates art in fashion, music, sketching, spoken word, filmmaking, and poetry. As a result, the above painting is the first collaborative portrait in the Faces of Santa Ana collection. The background is Bo's creation. Bo suffers from schizophrenia and it was essential that he participate in order to capture the "thoughts and confusion" he commonly describes going on in his head. Together, his thoughts and confusion ultimately influenced the overall style of the painting for the both of us. 

Bo always dreamed of the day he can visit his home in St. Louis and see his ten year old daughter Destiny again. In addition to the struggles that living on the street provide, his heart constantly aches for a longing to be a father again. After the sale of his painting, we used the proceeds to send Bo to St. Louis to visit his family and daughter. He smiles a lot when describing time spent with her and recounts the moments they fell asleep watching movies. She gives him peace amidst the chaos in his life. He cherishes those conversations.