When Doug Orleski — the artist behind RVA Coffee Stain — started abandoning his art in pockets and corners of Richmond, it was his simple way of giving back to the city that often inspires his work.
One day, while abandoning a print at the Light of Human Kindness wall, a woman, Emily, recognized him and stopped to tell him of her own found art.
As it turned out, a few months prior, Doug was delivering a print to a customer, Matt, and included an extra for being a little behind schedule. Matt took a play from Doug’s book and paid it forward with his own abandonment in Byrd Park. Emily found it while jogging, and excitedly told everyone about her found art — including the guy she was meeting the next night for a first date.
The two had a long night of conversation over dinner. When they got back to the car to go home, her date handed her a small gift.
“Instead of flowers, he bought her a frame for the print,” Doug says. “And it’s been one of their favorite pieces of their relationship, which I thought was cool.”
This story originally appeared on Hometown Junket, a collection of stories by and about Richmonders.