Monthly Archives: May 2019


I was in the middle of a much, much longer version of the poem I’ve done here, typing directly into my timeline on Facebook–when all that I had written just winked out of existence. I tried to get it back but no dice, and probably no big loss. It went into detail about the Vegan restaurant, and its cuisine, and the foam-heart on the mocha’s surface that I destroyed with spoonful after spoonful of sugar; and it had a couple of word-choice startles and an Indiana Jones metaphor, but I was taking forever to get to the point.

apple oat barnacle muffin

my teeth–

two in particular–

were endangered by the

barnacle crust of the

“apple oat muffin.”

but the spongy interior was my

s  a  l  v  a  t  i  o  n  .


I think I owe some of how this turned out to Fernand Léger. I wasn’t thinking of his stuff when I did it but the light-to-dark value transitions sure look familiar. I gratefully acknowledge whatever influence he has had.

Forces! Innumerable photonic wavicles either strike us or go through us constantly. Alter our sensoria and our view of our personal space is much more dazzling, and confusing. Concentrate on certain wavelengths and we learn more. Let them all register at once and Chaos reigns.

2019 0510 here

Here is a loose interpretation of a photo I took of myself earlier this morning. I drew this to distract myself from the injured knee that is keeping me home from work today. It worked so well I forgot to take my pain medication.

As with most of my drawings, I end up feeling that this drawing is not an end in itself but a stepping-stone to the next drawing. “The next one will be better” has been my mantra for many years.

Here are the final two pieces of the portraiture puzzle I set out to resolve.

First was a value study. This was not an end in itself, but a means of informing the final version of the portrait.

2019 0507 kf 4

Lastly, full circle with pencil, not crayon. This is the best likeness and mood-capture of my friend that I am capable of doing right now.

2019 0507 kf 5

I did my best, but (of course!) I am still dissatisfied. I will show my friend tomorrow. I hope she will like what I have done.

2019 0506 about to happen

Continuing to explore the possibilities of crayon, on a hunch I blocked out a simple pre-death scene, using a couple of widely-understood symbols. The crayon does seem to enhance spookiness.

There are more “suspects” in this Who’s Gonna Die mystery than meet the eye. Some viewers will come up with a far more interesting story than I ever could, and I would love to hear them…

Here is what happened when I Tried Tried Again.

2019 0505 kf 2

Still too harsh, and Kelly’s eyes have a dreamy quality that I have not gotten right yet. There will be two more tries up the road a bit, another in crayon and the final one in pencil, coming full circle.

2019 0505 kelly felicia

Here is another try at capturing the inimitable Kelly Felicia. It is Conté Crayon on Canson Black Drawing paper. I went this route this time around because I thought it would reveal facial planes of light better. It does, but my relative inexperience with white Conté compared to regular pencil is making me wrestle and strain, and it shows. I would call this attempt neither failure nor success. I will try again.

2019 0501kelly felicia

Here is a sketch of my co-worker from the African country Liberia. Some of our colleagues call her Kelly and some call her Felicia. I call her Kelly Felicia, which amuses her.

I admire her immensely. She can do many things well. On the job she is versatile and a consummate professional. She can cook tirelessly, ring a cash register speedily, and break up a logjam in the Dish Pit expeditiously. And she does not complain; she is almost always cheerful.

Attempting her portrait, I am running into the quicksand of trying too hard, because getting this lovely and depth-revealing face just right is a fearsome responsibility. So the compromise I made with my artistic integrity was to do enough sketching of Kelly Felicia to learn how to make a reasonably recognizable face. This portrait was good enough to show her, and she smiled and said, “Oh. That is me.”

But something that is beyond Good is demanded of this remarkable subject. Back to the Drawing Board, then!