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The Journey (2021)
By Leander Vancraeymeersch

Throughout the search of me and Milan, we came up with the idea to rent a warehouse together, so that we could work on our projects consistently.  


Before the warehouse, I was working at Brico in the Quellinstraat, very convenient because my workplace was right next to Milan’s house. Brico always used to have these ball machines where you could put a coin of 50cents in or 1euro and you would receive a little toy.  


One day these ball machines were brought inside the stock of Brico, And I asked my manager if I was able to take them home with me. He told me to contact the owner of the ball machine, so I did.  


His name is Steve, he owned a company called BLV. After my phone call of me asking him if it was possible to buy these ball machines, we scheduled an appointment in Deurne.  


When I arrived he showed me a couple of actual carts where a child could sit inside of. And it could move around and make sounds. I was able to buy 2 of these vehicles and I put them in the warehouse I was renting with Milan. I bought a rocket and a taxi, the rocket was still working. The taxi needed a fix-up.  


When I moved the vehicles inside the warehouse I immediately started working on them, it took me a good 6 months to finish one of them. 


I got fired at Brico and started working at MediaMarkt with a full-time contract. I hated it profoundly. Every day I took the time to work a little bit on the rocket, it was winter at the time. The warehouse was situated in Borgerhout and I worked in Schoten. Which are quite far from each other. 


First of I started to sand the rocket. It took a really long time because it was almost the same age as me. The 2 component varnish had really crept into the layers of the frame.  

  • I started taping everything off.  

  • I repainted the rocket in white, I gave it 3 layers.  

  • I repainted the stand of the rocket in black, I also gave it multiple layers.  

  • I used Posca markers and generally black, blue, red, and green markers to detail the rocket.  

  • I gave the booster of the rocket a thick layer of red and Yellow acrylic paint with a little sculpting tool.  

  • On the inside of the seat, I glued an actual praying mat. I cut the praying mat in shape with a Dremel tool.  

The rocket project really helped me take my time, I never really took my time and I always wanted to rush everything as fast as possible. Some days I wasn’t able to write or draw anything. But it made me more persistent in what I wanted to achieve and what message I wanted to show with this artwork.  


The meaning behind the rocket is complex. I used themes that were very hardening in my head during that time. I was feeling very misunderstood. It represents a form of existentialism that we only figure out by taking a ride in life. The rocket represents the journey.  


The artwork is called ‘self-love rocket’.  


So i started expressing how i felt trough drawings and poems that i drew or wrote on the frame.  

I drew multiple drawings that were critisizing topics like:  

  • The glorification of smoking weed.  

  • The Mandela effect  

  • The symbolism of different religions throughout the world 

  • The Jewish tree of life 

  • Doubt 

  • Guilt  

  • Love 

  • The Omega symbol 

  • ‘The Concept of Human Development’ in Arabic 

  • The Ohm symbol  

  • The Pentagram 

  • The Dreamworks logo 

  • Noise canceling headphones  

  • Facebook  

  • Suicide 

  •  The Looney Tunes wolf 

  • “Fly your freak flag!  – fool your friends! - Freak your folks! - Foil the Feds! – Forever!” 

  • Quotes from the book Planet Joe written from the diary of Joe Cole who got shot by a shotgun at age 27. He was touring with Black Flag and the Rollins band in the eighties. The thing I liked about Joe Cole is that he has a so-called ‘waste detector’ and I recognize that in myself.  

  • “Is this you? Of course not well, there’s been an accident!!! No one’s quite sure how it happened, but we seem to be in the process of recovering.  

  • Consent  

  • Symbolic signs of evil troughout the middle ages  

  • Blood 

  • La vache qui rit 

  • Self love 

  • Eyes  

  • Sight 

  • The house of Trix 

  • New York 

  • Le Rosay ‘a swiss school for elite rich children’ 

  • House crests 

  • Xenomorphs 

  • Bridges 

  • Bluetooth 

  • The analysis of a rainworm (rainworm facts) 

  • Forze the hardcore label 

  • Fetusses 

  • Osama Bin Laden  

  • Hentai 

  • “1001 ways to live without working” 

  • Breakdown  

  • The Batman logo 

  • You = responsible 

  • Mysticism for you and me 

  • Pornstars who have died  

  • “I don’t even smoke weed” 

  • Chlorox  

  • Poison 

  • The stealing fox  

  • “Don’t be the hero, or the expert, or the rescuer. Just walk beside them.”  

  • Poison 

  • Relationships 


The rocket represents one’s journey throughout a lifetime where you get to know different feelings and emotions. I used the rocket as a metaphor because you can take a seat inside and you control the steering wheel. How you decide the direction in your life.  


I portrait Anton (9 years old) inside the rocket, I remember younger me receiving my first batch of intense emotions around his age.  


It represents a kid that unknowingly steers the steering wheel without knowing where his destination at the end will be.  


The fact that certain directions have certain consequences, and that we are not aware of them before taking a decision. Whether it was good or bad. (The concept of human development) 


The rocket also represents my alignment with my heart and soul.  

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