OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – An Oklahoma City artist is on a quest to reunite a mother with a precious picture and work of art.

For 17 years, she has searched for the rightful owner without success.

“I’m an old school artist,” said Sonja Olson. “I use all paper pencil, watercolor, hard copy techniques.”

For Olson, art is her passion – her pride and joy.

“I don’t do anything computer graphics,” she said. “So literally, you get one copy of whatever I do, you know, it’s pretty much what you see is what you get.”

But to her, there’s no work of art more irreplaceable than one that’s led to nearly two decades of mystery. 

Photo of child and artist close-up drawing of his eye

Olson was a student at Francis Tuttle on Rockwell in 2005 when a classmate’s photo of her son’s bright blue eyes caught hers.

She offered to take it home for a few weeks to turn it into a portrait the mother could cling to for years to come.

“She said that this is, ‘this is my favorite picture,'” Olson recalled. “It’s, you know, ‘it’s absolutely precious to me. Do not lose it,’ and I said, ‘no, I won’t. I won’t.'”

After hours of work from a steady hand and caring heart – disappointment.

“I was going to get it back to her,” Olson said. “I managed to get it back, but then she wasn’t there.”

The mother was nowhere to be found.

“I still unfortunately, I can’t remember her name,” Olson said. 

The only clue Olson has is the child’s name – Owen Sage.

Throughout the last 17 years, she’s tried everything – even Facebook groups to find the mother – clinging to these precious pictures.

“I’ve been housing insecure off and on,” Olson said. “So it’s, it’s literally an extremely lucky thing that I have a roof over my head at the moment – that I have any artwork at all. It’s, it’s even more lucky that I have this picture and that I have the original photo.”

But she’s not giving up hope – determined to find that loving mother and her bright-eyed little boy once again.

“They’re both her property and they shouldn’t be in my possession,” Olson said. “They shouldn’t have been in my possession for this long. It was her most valuable picture.”

If it belongs to you or someone you know, please reach out to KFOR. We’d love to help coordinate a reunion!