“John Muir’s head exploded” or; the story of Cranky Bones


So since I’ve still got a month or so till I head to Maine and start writing posts about ACTUAL outdoorsy stuff, I figured I’d fill you guys in on the Primitive addictions logo above. This version was created by my friend Haily Kaufman, and incredible woman who I met through my university. If you’re in the market for something similar you should check out her work Here and here. She’s got a wicked way with whatever drawing implement you put in her hand.

The title of my blog/internet persona originated from a little cross stitch that sits on the mantle of my aunt’s home. I was spending some time with them a few years back and saw it and happened to be reading “My first summer in the sierra”  by John Muir. I started doodling and came up with a really simple line drawing of a Muir-esque man with his head opened up and trees, mountains and a river springing out. I didn’t think much of the drawing or words until I was hiking a stretch of the Appalachian in Georgia. In my downtime I started carving the guy into a table top I’d brought along to carve. I didn’t finish it on the trail, but once I got back it was the only thing I spent my free time on for a week or so. Below is the finished carving.


Eventually I decided that I’d get a tattoo of this guy to be the centerpiece for my “wandering sleeve” which is a fancy way of saying “get a little tattoo in every town I visit”. I took it to the shop by my apartment and met Justin Kennon (Check out his Instagram here if you live around St. Louis and need an artist). I gave him the basic idea and told him he could do his own spin on it. I’m really happy with the path he took with my basic design, and I can’t wait to fill in all the extra skin around him with storys from the palces I visit.


So that’s the story so far. Expect to see cranky bones show up more often, and in weirder and weirder places.

Got a design that follows you throughout your wandering? tell me about it in the comments.



4 thoughts on ““John Muir’s head exploded” or; the story of Cranky Bones

  1. I still want elder futhark runes across my face from the temple of one side to the other, going over the bridge of my nose with the two bands above and below the stave in a reddish skin tone, so it is subtle but striking. I never have money to my name, cause I’m a broken down heathen peasant most of the time however.


      1. They sound almost Welsh, and I would rather you tell me exactly what they are instead of just ‘researching’ it immediately, but some of those celtic languages I was around on my travels have this beautiful, soft crystallic quality, like these two words you have chosen, would I be even close?


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