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


Saturday, April 2, 2011

From the Sketchbook- Dwarves

I'm not sure who this one is. I just started drawing him with no particular dwarf from the "The Hobbit" in mind. He seems to me, upon reflection, to be Gloin, of the House of Durin.

This one is Thorin II (Oakenshield), a descendant of the House of Durin and is King Under the Mountain, King of Durin's folk in Exhile.

Generic dwarf warrior.

I think I'm going to be painting the "Battle of Five Armies" pretty soon. Just a few dozen more preliminary drawings before I give myself the green light. With any luck I'll have it done by Christmas...only kidding! But I still have to do a few dozen more sketches before I'm ready to begin.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Friday Roundup- Part 2

We weren't the only ones enjoying the beautiful morning in the park.

Today started calmly as we didn't have to rush out the door for any particular reason. I've got a few minutes this morning to do a few things (writing this post). It didn't rain this week like we all had hoped. Now we're a little closer to mandatory water conservation measures. I'll keep hoping and thinking rainy thoughts.

My son performed in the school musical Wednesday. He's was excited about it. There was a full-dress rehearsal that afternoon which I got see a few minutes of before I headed out to do my Doc Ed show. I forgot to mention that it's a musical about pirates which is perfect for Jose who loves sword play and saying "arrrrr"! It was a very entertaining.

I take get any photos but I went to Randolph Elementary to do a Doc Ed show for their after school science club which consisted of fourth and fifth graders. Fun was had by all. We had a question and answer session after the presentation during one of the kids asked me how water was made. In the three years I've been Doc Ed that was the first time I'd been asked that. Needless to say I was stumped. Time to hit the chemistry books.

The wand with some plastic wood added to give it the proper shape.

I also put in some time working on the Harry Potter wands for my kids. They're looking good. I just hope they don't ask me to make a three- headed dog next.

Friday was the beginning of my weekend. Nothing for me to do but enjoy some time with Pammy before she had to go to work. Naturally we headed for Natalie's, a.k.a.the Pink House. Afterward we got some pan dulce at the bakery across the street. Brunch on the westside is the best.

If you're ever on Cupples Road just inside highway 90 this should be a destination.

Friday Roundup- Part 1

This is the place (photo above and below) where Sarah and I, along with a variety of other individuals and organizations, showed off what we do for a living for almost seven hundred fourth and fifth graders from the surrounding communities.

The work week, at my work week, has come to an end. Actually, technically it came to an end yesterday afternoon after Sarah and I finished our presentations at the Medina County Ag Fair in Hondo. As part of the Friday roundup I've posted some photos of the event. I have to mention that the folks there are very friendly and made us feel very welcome. They also provided all the presenters with an excellent brisket lunch with plenty of yummy sides and homemade cookies and brownies. Life is good.

A good view of the exterior of the Show barn where Sarah and I set up.

Look at me. I'm "working"!

Sarah in the role of the respectable presenter/geologist.

A genuine, real- life blacksmith. How often do you get to meet a real blacksmith ?! Very cool!

Action photo numero uno.

Action photo numero dos.

I can't remember what she was talking about but I'm sure it was pretty important.

This young fella, who I think is a cotton farmer, had some great props, I mean tools, that the kids really got a kick out of as he demonstrated how they worked.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Windy Fun at the Ag Fair

Here's footage of one of the attractions at the Ag Fair in Hondo which took place today. I'll post photos tomorrow. It was pretty funny when all attention was diverted from the presentations taking place as the copter took off. You can' t compete with that so I shot footage.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

On the Road with Doc Ed

Tomorrow Doc Ed will be at Randolph Elementary presenting the "History of a Rock Star" show for the science club and then, on Thursday, will be at the Medina County Fairgrounds near Hondo for the 23rd annual AgFair. This year's theme is "Almost Everything Starts on the Farm". The event is sponsored by the Medina County Farm Bureau and the Texas Women for Agriculture. I'll be doing seven presentations along with fellow aquifer explorer, Sarah Valdez, Education Coordinator for the Edwards Aquifer Authority for almost seven hundred students from the surrounding communities. It sounds like it would be a lot of work but it's really very fun. Plus they provide the best brisket lunch and dessert. Yum!

Checking Out the Classic Theater of San Antonio

A couple of shots from near the top seats where we sat on "house right".

A really nice program clearly indicative of a healthy theater budget. Fancy schmancy!

My, my how the weekend tends to fly by in the blink of an eye! We had a busy but fun Saturday followed by a very relaxing Sunday. On Saturday night, Pammy and I , along with our good friend Charles Masceli, saw the Classic Theater's production of "The Lion in Winter". I went with doubts in my mind as to the quality of what I was about to see but I'm happy to report I was disappointed. The production was well done. The acting was strong and the production values were high as well. There was even an Equity (union) actor in the ranks. Hopefully his presence is the beginning of a trend for local actors.

My only negative critique of the production has nothing to do with performance itself but the way in which the seating for the audience was arranged. The seats were raked, that is, the seats nearest to the stage were floor level then gradually rose via platforms the further they were from the front of the stage. The rake as it was made it difficult to see any action that took place down stage. I don't know how difficult it would be to adjust the rake but it would make a big difference in the audience's enjoyment of the play. The only other solution would be to stage the action a little further upstage away from the audience which would reduce in size what is already a modest stage or maybe install a Jumbotron... but that would be silly, of course...wouldn't it?

The house itself was packed and at ten to twenty dollars a pop they made a good bit of change that night. It's got a loyal audience and that's great. Given the quality of the production I can see why. The Classic Theater doesn't pinch it's pennies so bravo to you. All's well that ends well. I look forward to my next visit there.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Meditative Monday

It's Monday and I've got a long "To Do" list. But before I bolt into my weekday sprint I always try to chill and gather my thoughts. Here's a picture I took last just as I was buckling the kids in to take them to school. Nice, eh? Chill. Sip your coffee or tea.
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