Iconic Local Artist illustrates Community’s values on Downtown Trolley

Posted on 10/16/19 by Briana Harper

If you’ve ever visited downtown St. Pete, you’ll notice that there’s a trolley rolling past that connects locals and visitors to the sights, sounds and experiences of the historical yet bustling cozy-modern community. The brightly decorated trolleys navigate the downtown area for riders at no cost, thanks in part to its sponsors, one of which is AARP Tampa Bay.

“This year, we’ve enlisted local iconic artist Carrie Jadus to enrich our downtown area with the latest wrap design,” said Michelle Cyr, AARP Tampa Bay associate state director for outreach. “We’re really excited to connect with Carrie whose talent will showcase our goals of connecting more deeply with our community.”

Carrie Jadus, a St. Petersburg native, began her art education in high school where she learned several artistic skills, but primarily how to paint. Yet despite this early interest in art, Carrie pursued a degree in electrical engineering for her secondary education.

“There was a little bit of me feeling like I don’t want to be a starving artist, I want to have a prosperous life and family” Jadus said.

Carrie Jadus.jpg

Before her 30th birthday, Carrie quit her job as an engineer and took a leap of faith by finally pursuing her long-held passion to be an artist. She used the money she had saved for a new car and instead converted a spare room in her house into a studio. Her home studio, an enclosed carport with no air-conditioning, is where she started to build her art business.

“I’m not going to live forever and I would like to live my life as an artist because that’s how I’ve always seen myself,” said Jadus. “I will try to give myself a year to pursue art, being an artist. Of course all my friends said I was crazy.”

Carrie’s efforts have paid off and now she works side-by-side her sculptor husband in a shared warehouse sketching the now recognizable art throughout the community, with the recent venture placing her artistic skill squarely on the side of one of the downtown St. Pete trolley wraps sponsored by AARP Tampa Bay.

“The new trolley wrap showcases Jadus’ style by illustrating the values of AARP and the St. Pete community,” Cyr said. “Those are to serve, connect, explore and discover. Different pairs of hands hold orbs that are cameos of moments that reveal these themes showing all that the city has to offer.”

“I especially love very old hands because they’re so interesting and they tell a story of someone’s life in essence,” Jadus said. “I chose hands of all different ages and ethnicities to symbolize diversity and age.”

The new trolley wrap features popular locations in St. Pete with AARP volunteers as models for the art. Through this collaboration, AARP Tampa Bay aims to nurture connections within the community such as ones with local artists like Carrie in order to be 'Here for you, where you live.'

AARP Tampa Bay Trolley

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