Jun29: Hippy

James doesn’t draw the next protrait until the current one is published.  Here’s Hippy.

Hippy has been with us since Paul was born, but was rediscovered about three years ago.  He’s quite a celebrity among our stuffed animals.  The very notion of a furry hippo constitutes an advantage, I’m sure.

To yard work:  I’ve been cutting the lawn with the weed whipper lately.  My mower is awaiting a new bottom seal.  I managed to get the old one out, but the replacement’s in transit.  I have high hopes the mower will run very well once the new seal is in:)

Workouts:  I did manage three this past week, but my weight continues to climb.  I’m at 181lbs tonight.  My jeans still fit, though, so I’m not worried.  I confess I’ve been binging on cheese cake and potato chips lately.  Don’t worry:  I eat plenty of vegetables and fruits as well, not least the dandelion greens that continue to propagate in my yard.

Today I threw the football around the yard with my sons.  My younger one never liked doing it, but he’s grown all of a sudden and now he throws a perfect spiral.  Whether playing football or baseball, or practising handstands, I was out in the yard all afternoon.

For now, life is good.  Hopefully you are all finding the same.  Here’s Hippy.
stuffed hippo, Hippy

Please return soon. Cheers:)

Jun23: A portrait from James

This morning, out of the blue, James entered the kitchen with Hazel under his arm.  “I’m drawing Hazel,” he said, reaching for some paper.  “Let me get you a clean piece,” I said.  “It’ll scan better.”  Away we go.

I was excited when James brought Hazel – who is a stuffed koala, by the way – into the kitchen this morning to draw her.  Hazel was excited, too.

James’ drawings have considerably improved over the past couple of years.  His “new age” began last summer.  Not a technical drawer, James has the spirit of a true artist:  he draws his subjects to reflect his feelings toward them.

In our household, each stuffed animal is a distinct member of the family.  Hourly, daily, or weekly, the animals take turns being active or passive.

I love James’s drawing of Hazel. The lettering is a direction James assumed on his own. Seeing it, I told him how it increases the portrait’s meaning. Ironically, I have yet to learn to do so with my own portraits:)

Hazel, James's stuffed koala

Please drop by again soon:)

A drawing from James

My younger son started drawing last summer.

I used to think that all kids draw.  My younger son, however, never seemed to want to.  Last summer I asked him why; he told me that he was never happy with his drawings.  He lacked faith he could produce anything he would like.

I’m no great artist, but I would say I’m pretty good.  Moreover, I’m self-taught (starting about three and a half years ago) and not very talented.  A person who lacks talent, yet learned on their own, is usually well-suited to explain a skill to others.

Like people usually do, James was making the mistake of outlining the subject first.  Experience has taught me that’s exactly what not to do.  People don’t recognize faces by the outline, but rather by the features.  “Focus on what’s light and what’s dark,” I told him, “and what draws your eye when you look at it.”

James immediately started drawing with a whole new attitude.  I thought he did pretty well.  I’ll show you that drawing some other time; today I’m showing you a more recent one that he really wanted me to put “on the computer.”

By the way:  James has his own computer at school, and probably rivals my competence at some day-to-day uses.  Of course, he has a Mac.

Well, James, here’s Santa’s Buddy, for all to see:)