Arts in the Family: A Family of Artists Just Trying to Make a Living in the Wilds of Texas


Saturday, August 14, 2010

Viet Nam War Museum Murals

Detail of Vietnamese Market section of Mural.

Another section of the mural as along the stairway leading up to the museum.

In 1990, Alex Rubio and I painted a series of murals inside the Viet Nam War Museum, which used to be located across the street from the Alamo. It hadn't been around very long at the time we were working there but it had a wide variety of exhibits ranging from uniforms, equipment, scale model scenes and a theater where they showed documentary films of the Viet Nam War. The museum staff were mostly volunteers, all of whom were veterans of that war. Interestingly enough, though, it was later discovered that the director of the museum was not a vet at all. I've got the article somewhere and I'll post it as soon as I find it.

Alex and I were proud of the work we did there but sadly, the museum moved to a different location and the walls that we painted on were demolished for the new tenants that would occupy the building. I'm not sure if the museum exists anymore but it was a unique museum set in the Alamo plaza, an area of great historical significance that most Texans consider a sacred. It's mostly become a place that is today dominated by tourist trap shops, rides and attractions that have no meaning and serve no purpose other than revealing how easily community leaders allow themselves to fall prey to the corporate siren song.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Friday Roundup

Pammy and I backstage at the Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey Circus in 2001, as Daddy and Baby, for our "Puttin' Baby to Bed" gag.

Baby showing Daddy who's the boss during the up close and personal pre-show where the clowns performed the bulk of their material.

Good evening to all and happy Friday! It was a beautiful morning here in paradise with the morning temperature at a bearable 82 degrees with the humidity at 49 percent at 10a.m. and a high of 97 degrees coupled with a heat index of 104. Whoah! What did that mean? It meant we spent the day in our climate controlled habitat munching on Cheetos and watching Wallace and Gromit all day as I drew. Oh, and the thermostat will be set at 75 degrees until further notice. It was muy caliente outside!!

Let's see, today is the 225th day of the year and there are 140 days left in 2010. That means I still have some time to keep my new year's resolution of losing twenty pounds. Cross your fingers. Meanwhile I'm still working on that pesky art assignment for the good people at Raining Popcorn Media.

I forgot to mention that we spoke to Susan Connally at the San Antonio Metropolitan Ballet about building the props for her Hansel and Gretel ballet so that project is officially on. We'll be building a cage and an oven that are found in the witch's gingerbread house. We got a couple of weeks before we need to have those props in a certain state of completion available for rehearsal so time is short but that's okay. Adrenalin is not in short supply in our home.

If possible, Pammy and I might have roles to fill in the ballet as either bakers or gypsies. It would be nice to be onstage again performing together. That should be fun. As soon as things get underway I'll be snapping pictures to share here. In the meantime I've posted circus photos of Pammy and I from 2001. Hasta Manana, banana!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Always Look on the Bright Side of Life Sing-Along

And now I'd like to end the day on a positive note with a sing- along. During lunch break at the Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey Clown College we'd watch videos featuring all kinds of comedy. One of my favorites was and continues to be Monty Python. Here's a great one direct from their Youtube Monty Python Channel. I believe there's at least one word that might be considered offensive so be warned. Otherwise enjoy!!

On Top of My Soapbox All Covered with Paint...

This is how I prefer to work: painting with brushes and paints outside where the light is great.

I've been working on a second art job for the last couple of days strictly in Illustrator requiring me to sit in front of a computer monitor for several hours at a time. I sit inside at my desk in the comfort of my home equipped with central air and a cushy chair. There are no messy paints, no palettes and brushes to clean at the end of the day. And I want to point out that I am grateful for the work I get to do so I don't create the wrong impression. Given the perks of working indoors on the computer you would think I'd be elated but the truth is I like the mess.

I like to get paint on my hands and clothes. I enjoy the experience of squeezing the paint from the tubes and mixing the colors with my palette knife to my satisfaction. The colors exist on the palette for the day and I will have to do my best to reproduce them again the next day. I like that.

Computers are great tools for artists. Maybe one day I might actually become somewhat computer literate. But I can envision the day when I step up to my monitor with my palette and brushes in hand to paint on it the right way.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Kinetic Comedy

I couldn't end the day without a little physical comedy so here's my favorite silent movie comic Buster Keaton.

Long day

Unpublished illustration. Brush and ink on bristol board 9"x12" 2005.

Howdy folks. It's another late entry again today. I'll try to do better tomorrow. Today I felt lot like the drawing above so I'm glad the day is winding down. I spent the day trying to multi-task which is always doomed to failure because you never can complete one project. And yet knowing all that I forged ahead like a lemming on speed. I did manage to get some work done on my art job so I guess that's good. I'm just glad my art director doesn't read my blog... or does he? Let's find out, shall we? I haven't done any work today. It's all an act. I hate art. I wanna be a human guinea pig! It'd be more fun. Okay, now we just sit back and wait. I feel so alive. Until tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

My Kid's Art

My daughter made this one with the intent of keeping the pink color dominant. I was pretty impressed when she told me that was going to be her approach.

Jose has made paintings like his sister's but he has always loved dinosaurs and rocket ships. The drawings above were to be used for the cover of his birthday party invitations. He made a different one for each of his fellow classmates. Cool!

In keeping with "Anything Can Happen Week" I want to share with you some of my kid's art work. Our son and daughter are never in need of art supplies or encouragement. We try to create an atmosphere of creativity as much as possible at home and we take them to see live performances and art exhibits as much as possible.

I love to watch them create their art and to see the excitement and concentration on their faces as they work. I treasure their art very much and would rather see one of their paintings up on our walls than any of my pieces. Their enthusiasm and love for art is a constant inspiration and reminds me that I draw and paint for the joy I derive from it. Thanks kids.

Buster Keaton Speaks

RetroBites: Buster Keaton Laughs

This is great stuff. You've three comic legends talking about comedy and specifically about pies. Sitting to the right is Bert Lahr, then the host of the show and then you have Buster Keaton and Eddie Foy. Bert Lahr and Eddie Foy are pretty good and all but Buster Keaton is the best. I got this from one of my favorite blogspots, "News from Me" and I'll put the link for it below. Savor it, baby!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Anything Can Happen Week!

Below are a random set of sketches that I drew for fun and relaxation.

I think this is Santa's personal bodyguard.

There's something about a woman in uniform.

Big buckles never seem to go out of style.

I guess Goblins shave their pits too.

If you're gonna have a genie make sure it's got three eyes. Two eyes are so last century.

Pammy and I just watched an episode of "Big Bang Theory" where our favorite cast of characters were enjoying what they called "Anything Can Happen Thursday", a day where the rule was to be spontaneous. In honor of that brilliant idea we here at Arts in the Family have designated this as "Anything Can Happen Week". So along with the usual things you can expect from this blog you could also expect to see some fun and inspiring youtube videos or a poem or even a bunch of random sketches like I'm posting today. Maybe even something I haven't even thought of yet. DUDE! So stayed tuned and now on with our regularly scheduled program.

All went well with good ol' Doc for his morning show in Seguin. I didn't take any photos of the place. I left with all my show stuff and my coffee, of course, but forgot my camera. My next Doc Edwards presentation wont be till the last week of the month on the 27th at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic School. Try saying that three times fast.

This afternoon we'll be paying a visit to the San Antonio Metropolitan Ballet to "get the skinny" on the props they want built for Hansel and Gretel. I like using anachronistic phrases like "get the skinny" from time to time to keep them alive. Later on we'll be tinkering with our comic material to work it some more. The one thing we wont be doing today is eating Mexican food. We had a good bit of it yesterday and we've filled our quota for the month.

Pammy and I are seriously thinking of renting a space somewhere to use as a theatre and studio. We've tried for a very long time to work with the theatre community here but, theatrically speaking, we don't see eye to eye on a great deal of things with them. So this month begins our quest to find a home for our theatrical ventures and I don't expect it will be easy to find such a place. The realtor waters can be treacherous and are filled with some hungry predators so we're going to take it slow and easy navigating through these uncharted waters, plotting our course with patience and care. Wish us well.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Sundays at my House

Just a quick update from Rancho Ramirez. Tomorrow I'll be paying a visit to Seguin, Texas as Doc Edwards for elementary school age kids at the Mary B. Erskine Education Center. Plus, we got a call from the San Antonio Metropolitan Ballet to see if we can build a few props for their upcoming production of Hansel and Gretel scheduled to open in November. And of course, I've still got my illustration project to finish and the deadline is fast approaching.

Things are slowly picking up pace. This time of year is always a little calm for us and we make the most of it catching up on projects pushed to the back burner during the hustle and bustle period. Sometime next week I'll look over the props for Doc Ed and spruce them up as needed. Pammy and I are taking this time to continue working on new comedy material and we're excited about it. Nothing helps stimulate the creative process like a dozen tamales with coffee. Hasta manana!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...