"Keep swinging that....." He grinned very wide like a young boy about to get into trouble. Ray gave me a sly look as if he was going to write something perverted. I stared at the book and kind of tilted my head trying to better grasp the situation. The blank spot remained empty.
"Er what?" I kinda scratched my face nervously.
 After a moment of confusion he scribbled the rest of the saying and added a drawing on the paper.
"Can you read it? Do you know what that says?"
"Ummm keep everything that uh brunnnch or is it lunch?"
"Nope thats not it."
"It says keep swinging that brush I write that in everybody's book."
"Its all about brush mileage the more you draw the better you get. Your making a step forward on your journey."      
"Oh ok I see."
"If your doing artwork like this now then imagine what you'll be doing in forty years or even in five."

For the last couple of months I've been going to the Saturday Portrait group. Recently he's been giving me pointers on how to improve my paintings. Ray is the mentor and the grandpa I'd never had. I've been seeing weekly improvement.

Honestly I look forward to what I will become and what I will do next.
I'm starting to understand what Robert Henri meant when he said, "As an artist you have to makeup your mind to be alone in many ways." When I first ran across this I thought oh my goodness hes endorsing hermit artists. Do I really want to live my life like that? Seriously who wants that? Weirdo.

Having thought of that for awhile what he means and reviewing the entire quote, "The work of the art student is no light matter. Few have the courage and stamina to see it through. You have to make up your mind to be alone in many ways."

My reinterpretation and from my current understanding. Not everyone can be a grand master sensei in their craft. It takes hours and years of  dedication and intense practice sort of like knuckle push ups. Not everyone can be at the summit of the mountain.

This journey will be interesting. I'm on my way. Watch me. Behold I am like a shark. No one sees me coming but when you finally see me, I'm already there bout to chomp out the competition.


These  paintings have were done in the last few Saturday sessions.

Last session Daniel 02/15/14

The week before Toma  02/08/14




 Just for kicks I was working on this around the same time last year. I think the model was Deb.








I

I also was hired again to be a artist model. A few weeks ago on Saturday and yesterday. Normally I draw from models but one of the other artists in the group back in January requested I sit and be the model.


It also has been a strange week. Got sick again for over working myself followed by an allergy attack which feels just as wonderful. While being hired for an odd job with a person of an eccentric personality. Making this business relationship and arrangement longer than it had to be. Might as well been attacked by a cougar baby. 


Most of the members of the group were fascinated by my skin and features which are not that common. My mother was a native of the Philippines who came to the States around my age with my African-American father who was in the military. At some points it felt like being mobbed by aunts. Oh look I never noticed you have a small nose, ears, etc. Eh sometimes I wish I was taller or bigger. I always blame my Filipino mother for that.

One of the strangest aspects of this was I'm used to being on the other side of the canvas not on the canvas. Or the second time around I felt like a spectator a bench warmer. I wanted to draw the people around me and be a part of it. Kind of ironic in middle school when there was un-even teams with basketball the PE teacher did not mind if I sat out. I was so bad he preferred I sit out.

II
Now as an artist I see things. Observe them. Everything has meaning. Not like in the A&E tv show Hoarder's way. A lot can be told in one's gesture, posture, mannerisms, facial features. One of my favorite things that reveals alot about a person is their hands. They tell a story on their own. For instance there was this person who almost all the times I saw him had small cuts on his fingers or wore band-aids. Now I wasn't exactly sure what they were from but I made up a fictitious story about that. What caused these incisions? Tiny gears? Why and how?

Or another instance when I used to work at a restaurant there was a semi-regular customer who one day I noticed had a trace of oil paint on his hands and fingernails. I asked him if he was an artist. This freaked him out. He did not have any obvious ques he was an artist nor mention anything of the sort. He panicked and looked at me as if I was a psycho stalker freak and quickly left.

Well the next time I saw him I explained how I knew he was an artist was he had paint on his hands like mine when I work traditionally. After that he somewhat respected me more and did not just judge me as a fast food worker. He gave me his business card and terrible directions to a gallery he sits in on the weekends. I have yet to find it. With my terrible sense of direction.

The point is while I observe my surroundings as an artist other artists do that as well. A sketch hunter. It's like being in a room full of ninjas. Everyone is a ninja. Deadly. Almost nothing goes unnoticed. Practically every ninja can do a back flip. What makes their back flip unique from everyone elses?

My friend Elizabeth Jose's photos and painting. These 2.



                                                                            John

                                                                      Ginny

George Chacon

Giovanna Papponetti

Art Dump. For the lack of art in the updates. Working on a new theme that I hope to share soon.


Figure Drawings 




I'm a fan of over-the top style assassin movies like the Bounty Killer. Overload in cheesyness but nethertheless wanted to run with my theme of lame action movies. Pt. 1 was a guy based
off of a phrase of a mix of bad Spanish, Italian, and English, "Mucho Gusto nice to killz yous. Requiscant sin Pace Bastardo." Which is "Nice to meet you. Nice to killz yous. Rest without peace bastard."



Pt. 2 Unknown female character.

Titled "Does Your Soul Cry?"
Haven't done anime style in awhile. Sketch for a marker piece in progress.
It is based off of the song "Retrograde" by James Blake. 
When I first heard it I cried. Recently heard it again the other day 
and involuntarily the same effect happened. So I sketched that feeling out. 
I hope to convey that same feeling well.  





At my New Year's party my friends and I attempted to watch many movies. Watched part of movies and didn't pay much attention what was going on before moving on to the next movie. Nothing was accomplished except singing karoke to 90's hit music and Back Street Boys. With a side track mission in doing the Gangnam style while drunken style. Which I won second place in not messing up by default.




 Back to the main point finally had time to watch one of my favorite movies that evening. That movie was Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along-Blog. It is about an aspiring villain trying to be accepted in the Evil League of Evil. While singing blog posts about his life. A short 45 minute movie on Netflix.  Its an awesome movie and I recommend it.