Thursday, May 29, 2014

Faith vs. Atheism

New polling data shows that many Americans born into the millennial generation (after 1980) identify as non-religious. These young non-believers have been dubbed "nones". This drawing was inspired that idea. The woman on the right is known atheist, Zoey Deschanel, as an example of a "none".

Regardless of your faith (or non-faith), please follow my blog for more enlightening posts.
Thanks for visiting .

Word Play

I've always been fascinated by the streamlining of corporate names. What does a name-change imply? Kentucky Fried Chicken was founded in 1952 by Colonel Sanders (pictured above). Today it is the second largest restaurant chain in the World. In 1991 the company simplified it's name to KFC. In terms of letters, the slimmed down logo went through a drastic weight loss, right?

Colonel Sanders opened the first Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant in Utah in 1962. Although he sold the franchise in 1964, he remained the franchise's official ambassador. He died in 1980 at the age of 90.

Thanks for visiting. You can see more color illustrations here. From Apple to IBM, many iconic companies logos have evolved over the years. Do you have a favorite logo evolution?

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Servant and Master

"In order to become the master, the politician poses as the servant." - Charles de Gaulle

I posted a B & W version of this piece last month, and decided to experiment by adding some patriotic colors. I recently started playing with an off-register technique for constructing illustrations, so I tried to apply that here.  You can view my color illustration portfolio here.  Because he's such an iconic figure in American politics, I chose Ronald Reagan for illustrating this quote. In truth, you could put almost an politician in this picture. In politics, the servant and master are almost always one and the same.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Benghazi Outrage

On September 11th, 2012,  the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya was attacked - tragically leaving four Americans dead. In the following days, many questions arose about the nature of this attack, and whether it could have been prevented. With a presidential election season as a backdrop, these issues became a political lightning rod.

Nearly two years later, this incident is still being dissected by politicians. New congressional hearings will be conducted - to get to the "truth behind Benghazi". It's become a rallying cry for Americans who distrust the current administration. Many others view these hearings as a cynical exercise, where the only goal is to hurt political enemies.

When a tragedy is endlessly exploited, the world starts to look out of balance. I was looking at an old map of the port of Benghazi, which reminded me of an open mouth. I thought this was an apt metaphor for all the the political noise surrounding this incident.  That's what I tried to convey with this drawing.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Ticks are Breaking Bad

I recently illustrated a story about the dangers of ticks - and the horrible diseases they carry. As I was doodling ideas, this crazy image came into my mind. It was inspired by the main character in the TV series, Breaking Bad. Walter White is a chemistry teacher who loses his job, and becomes a meth cooker in order to support his family. As he rises in the ranks of the drug world, Walter's legend grows. He becomes known by many nicknames: Heisenberg, The One who Knocks, and the Danger. Much like drug dealers, ticks can deliver horrible chemicals into peoples bodies. But unlike a TV show, ticks are a real danger. Be careful out in nature. Danger lurks.

Monday, May 19, 2014

The Face of Spring

After a brutal winter here in the Hudson Valley, spring has mercifully sprung. Everywhere I look, trees are lush with leaves, and flowers are blooming brightly. I'm posting this old drawing in honor of the new season's awakening. Wherever you live, enjoy the day!

You can see more colorful illustrations here.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Trouble on My Mind

Maybe some of you can relate to these drawings?  I think of myself as a fairly well-adjusted person, yet anxiety can get the better of me. There's so much turmoil in our economy, politics, and environment - all of which can contribute to our worries. I usually manage negative thoughts by exercising (leaving harmful emotions on the gym floor). But sometimes anxiety gets channeled into my sketchbook. I'm not sure if this is healthy expression, or a way of avoiding issues I should be confronting. If these drawings have any legitimacy, they may be simply affirmation of the human condition?

I apologize for the disturbing nature of this post. They're a reflection of darker moments.
Believe it or not, I'm a pretty optimistic and humorous person:-)

I'm curious how you deal with anxiety? I'd love to hear your thoughts.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Heroin on the Hudson

Heroin use in the Hudson Valley has spiked dramatically in recent years. This story for About Town addresses this serious issue in Dutchess County (where I live), and lays out ways in which local officials are confronting the problem. The author also interviews a 21 year Rhinebeck resident - who tells a cautionary tale about how he fell into the clutches of heroin - and how he eventually kicked the habit. Below are some sketchbook ideas for this story:

Thanks for viewing. You can see more B & W work here.

Monday, May 12, 2014

For Opera Lovers...

It's never too late to start appreciating a classic art form.  My parents, who are 89 and 91 years old, recently discovered the joys of opera music. This reminded me of the NPR music guides I illustrated a decade ago - and this book in particular. I'm sending them a copy today, in hopes that it will deepen their appreciation for this powerful form of expression. Happy listening, mom and dad:-)

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Word Play

New polling data shows that many Americans born into the millennial generation (after 1980) identify as non-religious. These young non-believers have been dubbed "nones". This drawing was inspired that idea. On the right is known atheist, Zoey Deschanel, as an example of a "none".

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Tick Season is Here

Deer ticks are the scourge of the Hudson Valley. These tiny pests live almost anywhere there's grass, brush, or woods. Aside from Lyme Disease, scientists have discovered other blights these critters can spread.  This article for About Town describes these new diseases , and highlights ways to avoid getting bitten (staying out of tall grass and brush, covering your body thoroughly with clothing, wearing insect repellents containing DEET, etc).

A few ideas I submitted for this spot.

Be sure to take precautions, because tick season is here.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Word Play

Although we've come a long way, it's clear that racism is still a serious issue in America. This odd bird of a drawing was inspired by the words of rancher Cliven Bundy, NBA franchise owner Donald Sterling, as well as the hideous actions of former  Kansas Klan leader, Frazier Glenn Cross. The Southern Poverty Law Center tracks "hate groups" around the U.S. Here's link to a hate map they created, showing where these groups are active.