Artwork by Desmond Rhae


When I'm not working to channel something creatively, I find solace in the woods or in looking at the stars in the night sky, longing to be back there for what feels like the thousandth time.

Some of my biggest inspirations have been visual artists like Zdzisław Beksiński, Philippe Caza, Alphonse Mucha, and H. R. Giger—not to mention countless traditional and neo-traditional tattoo artists. I also find intense inspiration in music styles like black metal, dungeon synth, and dark ambient/industrial. But in the end, some of the deepest whispers of inspiration have arisen from meditation and my interest in the occult.

One of the strongest beliefs that have endured throughout my life is that darkness can catalyze just as much creation as light, if not more. This belief has been both tried and strengthened by the hellscape that was the year 2020. This past year has been one of introspection and evolution for all—especially for those who already found solace in the dark. I wanted this piece to depict the way that new growth can rise from the death of everything old, heavy, and obsolete. Sometimes the dismantling of the comfortable and familiar must take place in order for something startling and beautiful to arise.

Sometimes the change happens before we're ready. Sometimes the new growth begins before the old husk has even stopped bleeding.

DESMOND RHAE has spent his whole life exploring a deep interest in art, writing, and music. After writing several stories as a child, participating in various art exhibits, and going to college for graphic design, he knew that the call to create would never fade. Since then, he’s worked as a freelance writer and designer alongside accepting art commissions. He's also become involved in his community writer's group and had an art exhibit in the local library. You can check out more of his work at www.theinksphere.com.

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