October 28, 2014. I make it my ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind my own business, and to earn my own living. This comes from the letter to the Thessalonian believers in the New Testament. May I never be about making a big impression of myself. Who am I anyway? I am like the grass; here today and gone tomorrow. My life, and yours, by the way, is passing quickly away, and soon there will be little memory of us. May I count my days, and endeavor to live at peace with all men and in fear of God. Yes, God. I know, the concept of God is an old-fashioned idea these days. But I see his hand every day in the beauty of life and the joy of music. Turn off your television; better yet, throw it out. Get off the internet. Go outside and use your legs. Walk in the sunshine. Get together with real people and talk to them without using a phone. Look deeply at the flowers. Listen to music; not the inane trash on most radio programs- real music. Drink deeply from the truths of the scriptures. Don't settle for cheap escapes. Find real life and settle in there. Find a place to be alone where you can talk to your Creator. This is where you'll find the peace your heart is after.
October 17, 2014. It looks like I'm nearing one thousand subscribers to my U-Toob channel, so I thought I'd better come up with what's called a "channel trailer." This is supposed to give people an idea of what to expect if they subscribe to my channel. Believe it or not, I just filmed Sketch Video #28. I can't believe I've made that many, but I find it a pretty quick process, and fun way to document my sketching life, so if it helps other people in some way, good deal. Every now and then I enjoy seeing videos of other artists at work, and it gives me ideas too.
October 14, 2014. When I finished up work I headed right back to the same building I sketched the other day and decided to sketch it yet one more time, this time with a couple of the mechanics' cars out back. I can just hear their conversation in the shop: "Hey, there's that green minivan again, parked right over there. I think that guy is casing the joint. You better keep an eye on him. Looks like he's drawing diagrams. Make sure to lock the place up tight tonight; and don't leave our new torque wrench out in plain sight."
October 13, 2014. Here it is, the middle of October, and I'm still swimming just about every day. It was Columbus Day, so I had the day off. Imagine that. We decided to clean and organize the garage, which is superb, because it's one of those garages where we don't park the car. My son has his drum set in there, and we have our offices. There's carpet on the floor, two desks, our printers, file cabinets, tool boxes, and pretty much everything we don't have in the house. Here's our back yard, or at least part of it, showing where we eat most of our dinners, outside on the back patio. Off to the right there, behind the bushes, is our gravel-floored sitting area I drew the other day. On the left there, on the grass, is where we pitch a big tent if our kids' friends come and visit. I left out the barbecue and deck chairs, which normally would be on the right side of the drawing.
October 11, 2014. A great day, hanging out with family and friends, visiting the French bakery where my daughter works, and enjoying the perfect weather. To top it off, I headed into Old Town for two quickie sketches and decided to videotape the experience.
October 7, 2014. This one brings back memories for me. My time spent in the military was a formative time in my life, in many ways, and this represents that time quite well, as I spent many hours either fixing these things or driving the shocks off of them over rocky trails. And those were good times- at least the driving. The little 4-cylinder engine didn't have a lot of guts, but it was all that little jeep needed to get around. And it was a pretty spunky ride, making tight, dusty turns and climbing rutty hills. I would love to have one of these now, and besides the fun, enjoy the great gas mileage. When I was a kid, there were advertisements in Boy's Life magazine, saying that you could buy an entire US army jeep for only $50; that it was packaged in a crate, and you just had to put it together. These ads were one of the longest running scams to capture boys' imagination there was. The reason I never fell for it was that you had to send a sum of money to the address in order to just get more information on how to order it. So I fell for the "get muscles quick" scam instead.
October 5, 2014. It looks like I'm in another one of those "push through it" times in drawing, where I get a fresh wind and try things I don't normally try. These are good times, as long as you don't take yourself too seriously. Otherwise, when you draw your loved ones and they don't look quite right you can get frustrated. In those times you have to just identify things about your drawings that you do like. Although these last drawings of my kids don't look exactly like them, they capture something of the way I see them, while at the same time capture something of my ability where I'm at right now in my life. So I see this as a "work sample" that I some day go back to and evaluate where I was and where I've come. The goal is that I don't get stuck in one place, but that I keep learning and growing and developing. Another thing I like about this drawing is that it shows my daughter drawing in her sketchbook, something she spends a lot of time doing. She's not to the point of sharing her drawings with the world yet, but she definitely has talent, and is putting in the hard work to develop it.
October 4, 2014. I thought it was time to do another sketch video, this time showing much more of the process and no frills, except for the music of course. A beautiful day today, with temperatures almost 3-digits. My son and I went to Bentley's Drums in Fresno to attend an amazing drum session with Russ Miller, who has played and recorded with some of the biggest names in the music industry. This beautiful bunch of flowers has been sitting on the piano, so I decided it needed to be sketched. I thought it would be good to video the process for all the process junkies on the U-Toob.
October 3, 2014. I got a phone call a couple weeks back from my son's high school. "Mr. Carey, this is the school nurse. I think you should come down and pick up your son. He fell down playing football." I thought for a second. "He fell down?" I asked. "Are you sure he can't just walk home?" "No, he's in a lot of pain. I think you'd better come and get him." So we picked him up and took him to urgent care, where the doctor showed us his x-rays so we could see that the bone had broken completely in half. "Ouch." A couple days later his doctor opened him up, inserting a large metal plate and several screws to hold the bone together. It looks like he's going to be just fine. That's one tough cookie, my son.
October 2, 2014. On our back patio, my wife put this little flower box with wheels. It's a funny little thing, but adds color. I like it. And I like my wife too, by the way. Then, tonight my daughter and I headed down to the Fresno ArtHop, where we talked to some of the artists we're getting to know. The Hop was doing pretty good, I suppose, considering all the people who were over at the fair, where my son and I went last night. They had a drawing for all the kids with straight A's in the Fresno area to win a brand new Toyota. He didn't win, so we walked over the art show to see if I'd won any ribbons. I didn't win either, so we bought a jumbo corn dog and felt real American about it. This makes three nights in a row I went downtown. What is it about downtown Fresno that draws us? For my son, it's the screamo Christian rock band concerts, for my daughter it's the artists. So we get home tonight and everyone is doing their electronic thing, so I decided to sketch my daughter on her phone. Then my wife and I took the dog for a short walk- short, because last night was almost terrifying. We were being tracked down by what looked like a pit bull without a leash, or an owner attached to a leash even. We made it across the playground, then crossed a big street and headed into a dark street, but the dog was still on our trail. I was carrying the little dog in my arms the whole time, my wife scared to death. It was late at night, we had no phone, but we ran up to a random house and rang the doorbell, knocking to no avail. The people inside were probably just as scared. Eventually we saw the dog walk right past us, as we hid there on someone's front porch, holding our breath. Maybe a little drama is good for the heart.
September 30, 2014. We have a lot of people stay at our house, and I like that. We've lived here since May, and I can't think of too many weeks that have gone by when someone wasn't staying at our house. We really had no idea so many people would be passing through the Central Valley, but it's a great thing. And we like our house. It's small- no guest room really, but people sleep on the floor in the living room or in a tent in the back yard and it just works. But this is one of the best parts of our house- off to the side, when you come in the front door, is this little sitting area outside with a gravel floor and canopy of shade trees. I like to go out here in the morning with my Bible and a cup of coffee, and I've often seen other people do the same thing. It's also a great summer evening place to hang out, with the street lamp light filtering through the leaves, and candles flickering in the breeze. You get the idea. Everyone needs a place like this.