April 12, 2014. I can hardly wait till my wife sees the new car I bought while she was in Turkey! Or, do they call them now "previously owned?" Same difference. So glad she's coming home today. I actually do have something that I bought while she was gone...something rather large, in fact. It's been getting hotter and hotter here in the Central Valley. I think it's time to start an ice cream business.
April 3, 2014. I got together with these two guys today, and they both let me sketch them, which was nice. I've been enjoying spring break; a little more time to sketch. The guy on the left is Turkish, and we enjoyed some interesting conversation over coffee, and the guy on the right has lived many years teaching in St. Petersburg. Both gentlemen are great, and I feel privileged to have them as friends.
April 2, 2014. Top sketch was a true "urban sketch" today in downtown Fresno, showing the back side of Jensen & Pilegard, which I drew before. Next is just an imaginative drawing I did last night while my son was doing his homework. The guy with the big stride and blue jeans is Quinn, I decided. Quinn is back in town, and those designer jeans are going to be the next rage. The photo is from yesterday's mail. Two separate customers wanted to show me the final product of something they developed with my drawings, so I felt like it was my birthday. And, by the way, while I'm talking about these things, maybe you want a mug or a shirt with your city skyline, or old truck, or your mother-in-law, for that matter. I like doing custom orders. Just send me a note!
April 1, 2014. Last night I went downtown to Colligo Studio in Fresno and spoke with local artist Ma Ly. He very generously offered me an entire room of his studio to show my art for the month of July, as he said he wants to promote my artwork and get my name better known in the Fresno area. July 3 will be the main event, called Art Hop, and hundreds of locals come down to see the art, listen to the live music, and meet the artists. I feel very honored to have such a privilege, and admire Ma Ly's amazing work. He is a very gifted realist artist and very committed to representing the Hmong people.
March 30, 2014. My 15-year-old boy is turning into a man. His world is playing the drums, getting good grades, playing on the tennis team, and hanging out on this couch, which I believe must contain some kind of growth-inducing chemicals, because every time I see him there he looks longer. I'm proud of this kid, but I guess that's obvious.
March 30, 2014. Our last day in Germany, we made it a point to pay a visit to Herr Claren, a man who welcomed us to his country with all gentleness and humility. Although his hands hurt suffered with arthritis, he accompanied my wife's flute with his cello, as we sat countless evenings in their living room with the picture window overlooking the hills on toward Basel, Switzerland, their destination each Friday morning together. We will miss you, dear friend, and thank God for the part you played in our lives, helping us understand the German language and culture.