Worlds Away

Troy A. Lawrence, digital painting, 7 in x 7 in, 2020



This is the first drawing I made in which I depict myself as the trans woman that I am. That is to say, I drew myself the way I see myself. I am only newly out to some circles of friends, so this drawing represents a big first step for me.

This illustration depicts me sitting in my room, thinking about a battle between a warrior woman and a dragon in a fantasy realm. It illustrates how, with the help of my imagination, I can escape: I can go anywhere; see anything; and be anyone. I use this escape in order to find relief, as well as to process difficult emotions. This illustration represents much of how I have been spending my time in quarantine, and one of the many techniques I have been using to avoid feeling trapped while in isolation. I have learned that my imagination has been one of the greatest driving forces behind my urge to create art, and thus I decided to make this piece as a tribute to my creative process.


Troy A. Lawrence is a trans woman, and a long-time sufferer of severe depression and anxiety. Through their tumultuous years at university, they used art to process the myriad difficult emotions that they faced every day, regarding both mental health and gender identity. Over the years, they have learned that the need to express themself is fundamental to who they are as a person, and illustration has been the primary creative outlet for that expression. Professionally, they pursue every opportunity allowing them to apply themself artistically, and they aim to one day become a medical illustrator.