Sunday, June 2, 2019

April 2019

Last month was a time of introspection.  I discovered that I don't have time to do everything I want in a lifetime; that I have to decide what's really important and focus on that. I stopped all my origami studies, and devoted more time to reading and journal writing. Books I've finished reading are: Pegasus book 1, The Flame of Olympus by Kate O'Hearn, and Shadow of the Dragon book 1, also Kira by Kate O'Hearn. I'm enjoying O'Hearn's juvenile writing style. The double spaced print and simple vocabulary make each chapter easy to read, and the stories are packed with the kind of action I've seen in movies like Percy Jackson's The Lightning Thief. After a completing those books I leveled up to reading and finishing The Time Machine by H.G. Wells. There were a lot of big words in that book that would normally have frustrated me to a point where I would never have finished the first chapter, so I was thankful to have strengthened my reading skills with O'Hearn's books and I want to continue reading them while challenging myself with more complex novels like The Dark Tower The Gunslinger by Steven King, and literary classics like Around the World in 80 Days or 2000 Leagues Under the Sea. I have found a wealth of free information at the local public libraries, and found a program called Link + that will find any book from any library branch, place a hold on it and deliver it to any branch that would be most convenient for me to pick up.
I'm currently reading Pegasus book 2, Olympus at War by Kate O'Hearn, and I got a really nice drawing instruction book by Jessica Peffer called Dragonart How to Draw Fantastic Dragons and Fantasy Creatures. This book is great because it shows how to use a line of action to figure out complex poses, simple geometric shapes for building anatomy, and principals of light and shadow for different styles (flat cel and soft shading) of rendering. All of these things I've already learned from over 6 years in art colleges, but the book offers a way for me to hone my skills, and hopefully improve my artwork over time. Maybe at some point I might consider enrolling in an online class, but the free library books are enough for now.
It's important to remember that thoughts can become things, but one must dedicate the time to focus on dreams we wish to manifest into reality. It doesn't mean we have to loose sleep or sacrifice the quality time we want to be with loved ones.  It can be 10 minutes a day, in the morning before anyone wakes up! ( my favorite time). With persistent dedicated focus things so magnificent as the Golden Gate Bridge have and will come into being. Have you ever wondered how the Golden Gate Bridge was built? At one time it was just an idea in one man's mind, but the idea spread like a wildfire into many minds of engineers and businessmen. There was tremendous opposition from the military and from the ferry boat companies that were afraid of losing business as a result of the bridge, but Joseph Strauss found a way. He was just a human being like you or me, but his drive to succeed was what made a difference in all of our lives. When I get frustrated I look online for people like that to inspire me; that I can learn from. Here is a link to the article I read:

Also, vsit my website at to see more of my artwork.

March 2019 artist's update

For the past 4 years I have been living a double life. In one life I have been working full time as a class B Commercial Driver operating a paratransit bus for passengers with disabilities 5 days a week. In the other life I haven been a professional artist drawing caricatures on weekends for parties and events. During the time when I'm not driving or drawing I am a father to 2 cats, a boyfriend, and a son. I try new things in an effort to stay inspired. For a while I followed many origami tutorials on Youtube. I even got gigs folding origami for parties. Here is a list of the origami models I memorized and performed:
1. crane
2. beating heart (Action Model: when you squeeze the flap on the back the heart expands out and looks like it's beating!)
4. jumping frog (Action model: When you press down and slide your finder off the back it jumps up!)
5. cat
6. flowers in a vase
7. flapping dragon (Action model: When you pull on the tail the wings flap up!)
8. Batman
9. Yoda from Star Wars
10. barking dog (Action model: When you pull the tail the head moves up and looks like it's barking!)
You can find photos of my origami on my Facebook channel
For a few months I tried cooking.  I made all sorts of recipes. My favorite was the triple chocolate cheesecake with an Oreo Cookie crust. There was no restaurant or bakery that made it, so the only way to obtain it was to follow the recipe online. Cooking and the cleaning that goes with it took up so much of my time I stopped painting, and I was not happy about that. I decided it was time to get more focused, so now I just paint with acrylics on canvas and draw caricatures when I'm not working as a commercial driver. Even now that I have narrowed my focus to a more specific discipline as an artist I struggle with the realization that along with the painting I have to hit the pavement and hustle to sell my work, because it takes away from the precious time when I enjoy painting.
Last month I read a really good book called Beasts of Extraordinary Circumstance by Ruth Emmie Lang. It's about a fictional character named Waylyn that was raised by wolves.  The novel was a great escape after work, and I think a daily reading practice promotes creativity.  Since I started reading everyday I experience increased intellectual ability in conversations and I feel more excited about life, because I never know what kind of adventure I'll have when I read my next book.
This month I went to a "Landscapes of the Mind" show at the aRt Cottage  in Concord. The" R" is intentionally capitalized by the owner to symbolize that it's a place for everyone to enjoy and create art.  I enjoyed meeting the artists at this show and learning about their process. The aRt Cottage recently partnered with the Concord Art Association .
Since I decided to focus on painting last year, and have a few finished pieces that need to get out and be seen so the world can experience the joy I have found in my painting obsession, I joined.
 Also, I visited the Jennifer Perlmutter Gallery A new pop-up art gallery in Lafayette that has a show called New Currencies with over 40 artists selected from an open call. I asked the liaison there how I could get in my paintings in a future show, and she told me my work has to fit the style they're looking for and I have to have a following on Facebook and/or Instagram. I am actively seeking opportunities to promote my art, make friends and be supported in my struggle to take my art to the next level.