Beyond Measure was inspired by the smile of one twelve-year old boy in Peddapuram, a small town in south India. This smile caused a chain reaction of loving acts that influence me still today.
The influential smile belonged to Joshua, a boy living at Hope Village Orphanage. I first saw this smile after combing Joshua’s hair for a few moments and circled back around to face Joshua. Joshua had closed his eyes and his face had softened, his smile was the same as those you see on giant statues of the ever-blissful Buddha. Joshua was, in that moment, just a happy young boy, no worries, no defenses, just a boy enjoying one of life's small pleasures, a gentle hand combing his hair. I recognized the look on Joshua's face and knew exactly what he was feeling, and wondered, “How often did Joshua smile like that? Did anyone ever take the time to comb his hair, put their arm around him, cheer him on as he raced down the dusty road at the orphanage, or even just tuck him in at night?” These questions sat heavily in my heart not only for Joshua but, for the many children I had met in the orphanage.
Upon my return to America, I knew I couldn’t close the chapter on what had been one of the most important experiences of my life while in India. I wanted to find a way to give back to the people and children of India…but I wasn’t sure how. As I meditated on this desire to give back I reflected on a volunteer project I had designing billboard ads for a local hospital in India. After the designs were complete, I had the privilege of watching several local artists hand paint these giant billboards. I marveled at their ability to reproduce these images on such a large scale and with such unique artistic style. But I knew that these artists, however talented were soon to be replaced by the printing technologies making their way into India.
It was this realization and my desire to help the lives of the both the artists and the children in India that birthed Beyond Measure Arts. I set out on a three-month journey to meet artist all over India and commission pieces to be used on Beyond Measure’s products. These pieces were one-of-a-kind representations of each artist’s style and their countries visual landscape.