Friday, December 27, 2013


Pasque is a tiny island off the coast of Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts. I had the good fortune of spending a week there in 2001 - fishing with my former father-in-law. His daughter asked me to create prints which chronicle family adventures on Pasque. The waters around this island are abundant with striped bass, blue fish and lobster. Pasque is not only a fisherman's paradise, it's a beautiful state of mind.

In memory of Alex
There are two houses on the island - one for the caretaker, and one for renters.

John with a very big striped bass.

That's me with a really big fish, caught surf-casting on Pasque, September 2001

Thanks to Ellen for an amazing and personal project.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

I Do at Rutgers U.

I'm a regular contributor to the Rutgers Magazine. This drawing accompanies a story about the many marriage proposals which have taken place on campus. The backdrop here is Old Queens, one of the most iconic buildings at Rutgers - built in 1809. My inner-romantic was thoroughly 'engaged' in brainstorming ideas for this piece...

Thanks to Michelle Cody for proposing another fun assignment to me.
 You can see more recent Rutgers pieces here.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Dining Doodles...

Restaurants are usually full of people - which makes them great places to draw. It's interesting to observe patrons, and even more fun to draw them. Here are a few recent excerpts from my sketchbook...

Thanks for viewing. 

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Emergency Funds

This piece from today's Wall Street Journal addresses where you should stash your emergency funds.  Financial experts recommend that you keep three to six months worth of savings on hand in case of a catastrophic event. One new study suggests that you may be better off investing this money, as opposed to holding it as cash. The article, which you can read here, looks at the pros and cons of using emergency funds in this manner.  Thanks to Orlie Kraus and Sheryl Dermawan for another fun assignment (which I was very bullish on).

I always try to supply the Wall Street Journal editors with a variety of solutions....

Thanks for viewing. You can see
more fun Wall Street Journal projects here, here, here, and here.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Herbal Pet Cures

Here's a piece for Organic Gardening, about herbal pet cures. The article highlights various remedies for treating your pet's ailments - all made with herbs from your garden. My dog Lily could certainly benefit from treatments in this story. I'll post a link soon. Below are ideas I submitted...

Healthy Pets prance through herb garden...

Healthy pets surrounded by healing herbs...

Cozy pets surrounded by potted herbs...

Thanks to art director, Susan Eugster for a really fun assignment.
Those of you who are gardeners or foodies may also enjoy this post about garlic.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

10% Challenge

These lawn signs can be seen throughout my town. Homeowners displaying them are participating in a local program designed to reduce their energy-use by 10 % over the next year. Partners in this project include the town of Red Hook, Bard College, and Central Hudson Power. Homeowners like myself learn great tips about saving energy - and money. A few years back, I contributed illustrations for this worthy endeavor. Here's a little retrospective...

Carpools are cool...

Trees can keep your home warmer in the winter, and cooler in the summer.

biking is great exercise, and it saves money...

Laundry lines help you save on your bottom-line...

Walking is cool...

You can learn more about Red Hook 10 % Challenge here.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Government Shutdown

This drawing accompanies an About Town article about one group of people who felt the weight of the government shutdown - single mothers. The author highlights the plight of one mother of four - who's ex-husband could not pay child support because he was a furloughed government worker. This piece was greatly influenced by one of my favorite illustrators, David Suter - who's a master of transformational images.

A few ideas I submitted...

Thanks to Paul De Angelis for another compelling assignment. 
You can see another example of transformational art here.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

War on Christmas?

Yesterday I took in many moving tributes to our brave veterans, who've sacrificed so much to protect America. On the same day, I heard an interview with Sarah Palin - who was promoting her book about a different kind of battle,  the War on Christmas.  She believes this holiday is under assault by "angry atheists". All this stimulus inspired the absurd drawing above - based on the famous photo of our soldiers raising the flag on Iwo Jima...

Monday, November 11, 2013

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Collaborative Cultivation

These drawings for American Educator accompany a study advocating a more collaborative approach to education by local school districts, administrators, unions and teachers. In recent years, our federal and state governments have had great influence on public education. They stress the use of standardized testing to improve the quality of education. Many educators believe this top-down approach is ineffective; the focus is more on test scores than on students' well-being. This study showcases specific examples of local parties who came together and collaborated effectively - improving the quality of their schools.  These partnerships ultimately benefit students the most.

Apple picking teamwork...

Garden negotiating table...?

Putting students front and center...

Building bridges...

Entire community collaborates on school garden...

Thanks for viewing. 

You can view my new illustration website here!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Stay Warm...Wear Layers

It's been getting chilly here in the northeastern United States. I've been putting on extra layers to stay warm - which reminded of this poodle portrait I put together a few years back.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Indian Lake

I spent last weekend at Indian Lake - located in the Adirondack Park. All along the coastline, there were rocks piled up (as in the sketch above), known as cairns. I'm don't know their intended meaning, but these simple constructions added a poetic mystique to the rugged coastline. For me, they will mark a wonderful Autumn weekend spent with my family - celebrating my father's 90th birthday.

A quick sketch as dinner was on the grill.

I drew these pictures as the morning fog was lifting on Sunday.

"There are no words that can tell the hidden spirit of the wilderness, 
that can reveal its mystery, its melancholy and its charm."

~ Theodore Roosevelt, an Adirondacks enthusiast

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Jury Duty

Everyone dreads getting that call to show up for jury duty. I certainly did. Fortunately, sketchbooks are not banned from the courtroom. So for one day, I got in touch with my inner 'courtroom illustrator', and recorded the action...

Potential jurors listen to instructions from the judge.

Potential jurors answer questions from the judge, DA and defense attorney

A lunch-hour sketch of Bardavon Opera House - located across the street from the Courthouse.

There's no law banning stenographers from dressing snappily.

The judge came across as fair and compassionate

I wasn't chosen to serve on this particular jury - but came away from this experience respecting all the checks and balances we go through to remove biases from the legal process.  I'm fortunate to live in a country which attempts to make it's legal system as fair as possible. My only qualm was seeing "In God We Trust" so prominently displayed in the courtroom. I'm not anti-religion - but was under the impression that there is a separation of church and state.