I’m a creative, experienced, multi-purpose artist and art director
who can take projects start to finish in a variety of styles.

Good designs sell –
my designs sell out!

Sunday, October 27, 2013


I spent some time in a hotel this weekend thinking about creature comforts.  A white robe was laid out for me on the bed, with white sheets, white on white striped coverlet, white pillows piled in impossible mounds.  I tossed pillows around to maximize my perfect reading nest with a view of the sun setting in the west.  Ohmmmm….

My girlfriend and I took a road trip over a couple of states to meet with friends, attend lectures, and enjoy a Halloween party.  Unfortunately, I fell asleep before the party because my nest in the fluffy white linens and pillows was a little TOO comfortable.  Oops.  So much for drunken carousing and dancing.  I got up in the morning with an uncharacteristic smile and jumped when the elevator went down on the way to breakfast.

In case you haven’t done that, jumping at the moment when the elevator goes down makes you weightless for a second or so.

I had a broccoli quiche and bacon and a Pepsi -- things I would never normally have for breakfast, especially since I don’t normally bother with breakfast.  A man gave me a blue balloon swan and spoke to me in a Nashville accent.  He was going on about people’s attitudes towards clowns in a generally confrontational way, and I thought about Grandpa’s central Tennessee accent and the comfort I feel surrounded by words with extra inflections.  I smiled at the ill-natured clown and he chose to rant to someone else at the table instead while I talked to a Libertarian.

The drive to and from this little outing was an opportunity to talk myself out about various things that have been eating at me lately.  I’ve always considered it my job to be companionable as a passenger and keep the driver alert while we looked at corn fields and fall leaves on the trees.  I’ve known that I’ve been stressed lately, but I didn’t really pay attention to how badly I needed to relate all of my various stresses until my sweet girlfriend encouraged me to talk so much.  Once I got it all out, I didn’t think about it anymore throughout the weekend.  Done.  Discussed.  Type up the minutes and put it in a file to be forgotten.

It wasn’t a cheap weekend, and I don’t feel like looking at the bills.  Whatever the total, it was necessary.  We need creature comforts.  We need to have someone hear our feelings.  We need to look at fall leaves and corn fields too.  Or maybe it’s just as simple as we need to step away from our lives once in a while to gain a little perspective in a room that’s spectacularly white and clean, where we don’t have to do the laundry.

I’m late for posting this week, but I think you can see I had an excellent reason, with an excellent reason to lazily post a quick layout I did a long time ago.  No excuses, it’s just the easiest “creature” I can come up with unless you’d like me to post a picture of white for all the white linens.  And sorry, even though I had my camera this weekend, I didn’t take a single picture of any of it.  I wasn’t going to do ANYthing useful, even for blogging this weekend.

Happy Halloween everyone!!

Friday, October 18, 2013


I had a dream once, or maybe it was a meditation… whatever you call it, I was thinking about my place in the world and the “why” of the universe when I saw a pattern in my mind of criss-crossing lines with points of light at certain intersections.

Never let it be said that I can’t quote a Republican once in a while, and I actually thought I was quoting Hillary Clinton (which annoyed me almost as much), but no, it was Papa Bush.  Politics aside, I understood my vision to be the idea that I served a purpose in the universe.  I was a point of light, and I saw the connections between others.  It all made sense to me for a moment.

Sometimes I remember the vividness of this vision when I think about the threads of lives weaving in and out like invisible spider webs.  People I‘ve forgotten resurface after decades and tell me I did something that meant something to them.  I’m glad I didn’t know it at the time or I might’ve done things differently, or been so wrapped up in possible unintended consequences that I might never have done anything at all in my life.

I know I’ve surprised other people too when I’ve told them they had a lasting impact on my life.  One of the really wonderful things about the internet is that it lets us find people we thought were lost to us forever.  We can reach across time and distance to say “Thanks” and “I love you.”  We don’t say those things often enough.

When I’ve talked to lost friends via internet, I discovered those old connections still mean something to me.  I’m not really sure what to do about that other than an occasional “Hey, how ya doin’?”, but the connections matter.

If nothing else, maybe part of these kinds of entanglements is that once in a while I send out my best wishes to these people.  They don’t know it, but I honestly wish them success and happiness.  I’ve done this a long time, and then found out other people have done the same for me.  The thought is unexpected, but it also sustains me sometimes.

It’s not like the way some people try to pray me into thinking/doing what they believe is right.  It’s an open hearted feeling.  I think I’m at my best when I’m in that kind of mental/emotional space.  Wouldn’t it be nice if all wishes and intents and relationships were so simple?

“Entangled” is often a negative word, like you’ve gotten your foot stuck in a bear trap or weeds or someone else’s significant other, but the soul strands of spider webs are something I see as a positive.  All these connections to people make me feel like I have a place in the universe, that my existence matters.  It gives me motivation to tell others, “You matter too.  If my life has meaning, you helped create that meaning.”

Which is much better than my alternate, depressive thought, “You’re born alone. You die alone.”  Yeah, I’d much rather be “entangled”.

Sunday, October 13, 2013


Hitler made a statement with his mustache.  I’m not sure what that statement was supposed to be.  Look at me, I’m nuts?  Hitler wanted to be an artist before he tried to kill off so many people – which goes to show that the world would be much better off if everyone supports art.

I have a morbid fascination with WWII.  I don’t care about war tactics, airplanes, and stuff like that.  My fascination is with the people.  I need to understand how Hitler could do the things he did, why the nation let him do it, and all the human suffering and surviving that came out of it.

Hitler used his war to plunder the greatest art treasures.  He also used art to fight his war.  Whatever anyone could say about the content, German propaganda was so effective that Americans and Russians copied his tactics.  The symbols they used were powerful.  The swastika was an ancient symbol for luck and wellbeing.  The eagle is strength and victory.  Red, white, and black are the most powerful colors in advertising.

There’s just no getting around it, Hitler wasn’t Hitler without factoring in his feelings about art.  How could a man with the sensitivity to paint flowers and dogs be so heartless and cruel?  Or perhaps the real question is who will be the next Hitler?  What country will follow a lunatic into battle?

I know it’s going on in the world right now.  There’s always a crazy person who wants to rule the world and others will follow their ideas.  As a person with German ancestors, maybe WWII hits me too close to home.  All of my people were in the US at that time, but German war posters show people who could be my relatives.  Old newsreels show familiar-looking people with guns at concentration camps.

It’s been said many times, but can’t be said enough, “Never again”.

All of this seems too heavy for a Sunday morning with a stupid topic like “moustache”.  People either have moustaches or not, and hopefully the people with them aren’t women.  Also, hopefully the moustaches don’t have leftover lunch in them.

Amish men just don’t look right without one.  I mean really, if you’re going to let your beard grow, why shave off the moustache?  It makes them look cranky.

The best thing about Vikings other than their cool helmets is that they often braided their beards.  Sensible and stylish for when they were off plundering.  Pirates did that too, so maybe beards are just a sign of lawlessness and need to be repressed.  Maybe Muslim men would be in a better mood if they braided their beards with flowers?  Just saying.  Someone’s got to find a way to make the world a better place.

Saturday, October 5, 2013


I often think that kids are too entertained.  My childhood was perfectly boring most of the time, and yet it gave me enough material to blog about week after week – and I’m mostly cherry picking happy stories.  What will today’s kids blog about when they spend their days glued to TVs?

One time a friend and I were talking, and I said that kids don’t spend any time in contemplation. Or maybe I said reflection, meditation, rumination, or something when her son popped out of his video game long enough to ask for a definition of the word.  We described it as having time to think about things in a quiet way.  “Yeah, I don’t want any of that!” he said, and went back to his video game.  We all laughed because he was funny, but I still hold to my original point.  We need quiet time to reflect.

I looked at “underwater” and thought about my perfectly boring childhood by the river, and thought that I have too many choices to just pick one.  There was the time my sister got caught under the ice, or when my brother almost drowned in a lake, or when the ice broke in the spring and the water rose so fast I had to turn around and run to get away from it.  There was the year the whole Glen was underwater in the spring flood, or the year the neighbor drowned by the dam, or the other neighbor committing suicide off the bridge and laid facedown in the river until my sister turned him over.  Or, when I read in a book about a spy breathing underwater through a hollow reed and I found my own reed and spied on teenaged boys – but the teenaged boys were kind of dull and I went off to catch crayfish or something instead.

Maybe if I’d had playmates I wouldn’t care about reflecting time, but since I had more time than I knew what to do with, I spent a lot of time thinking about stuff and observing.  I also had the freedom to run around and find stuff to observe since I wasn’t bothered with pre or post school scheduling and my parents severely limited TV time.

I picked up a long blue heron plume from the water one day and stuck it in my hat and felt like D’Artagnan.  I posed for my niece, and she complained that I always find all the good stuff.  I told her that it comes from looking.  See how the water moves?  See how things collect at certain places?  Rocks and heavy things will land there, and feathers and light things will land here.  Fish will collect beneath that rotten log leaning over that still water, and it’s a waste of time to cast into the fast current unless you let the current take your hook to where the fish live.

I talked to my mom once about intuition, and she wondered whether or not intuition is really just observation.  There might be some truth to that even though I don’t think it fully explains everything.  I noticed that my boss’ color was bad the morning she died.  She was a little gray-yellow, and had on a lot of makeup.  Nobody else noticed, and it didn’t tell me that she was about to die, but it did explain something to me once she was gone.  No one else noticed the color of her skin because they didn’t spend so many boring hours looking at water sliding by.

Observing is a big part of art, but it’s an art in itself.  The more you look, the more you see, and the more things you see, the more it informs your life and improves relationships.  Or helps you catch fish and find the best feathers.