Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Mystery Sketch Theater at Falcon Bar.


Mystery Sketch Theater is a live figure drawing session that takes place once a month, on the first Thursday of the month at an awesome artsy bar and gallery called The Falcon (819 E. Washington Street, Orlando, FL 32801). The cost is just $5 which goes to the model. The models are superheroes, burlesque performers, retro housewives, belly dancers, drag queens! It's a hoot! About a dozen artists will show to sketch quick one minute poses to start and gradually work up to longer 20 minute poses. I like to sketch the artists at work as well as the model. One artist brought in his dog, and they sketched from their spot on the floor.


The next Mystery Sketch Theater Presents, Sunny Cummings. She is a yoga instructor so expect to see some super human flexibility.

We provide you the most ravishing, exotic and fascinating models our fair city and beyond can provide. Elaborate costumes, fabulous makeup, and amazing personalities. On that note...if you have a pair of fishnets or a sequined bra, you might want to contact us for modeling opportunities. We'll pamper and worship you.

Artists of all skill levels and occupations are welcome to come. Even non-artists who just want to hang out, get their geek on and have a good time with good people are more than welcome too. Artists are asked to pay a small fee of $5 for the evening to help cover costs for running the event. Oh, did I mention we have contests? Silly! Ridiculous contests! With prizes!

First Thursday of the month, every month from 8-10 PM! Come early to get a great seat and snag a drawing table before they're all spoken for!


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Monday, January 30, 2017

The Corsets and Cuties 2nd Annual Amateur Contest & Holiday Kick Off.


 I was invited to a Corsets and Cuties dress rehearsal on Wednesday 8-17 at The Venue (511 Virginia Dr, Orlando, FL 32803) from 8pm to 10pm. It was three months since the Pulse shooting, and the venue was richly decorated with rainbows, and an Orlando Rising banner. Even as performers stripped, the banner reminded one, to never forget.

The Corsets and Cuties performers always bring lively tongue in cheek humor to their performances. Laughter, set them apart from other burlesque troops I have sketched. Rainbow skirts flew off of hips and fluttered to the floor. This see me an appropriate way to honor the spirits  of the young men and women who were dancing and celebrating life when insanity cut their lives short.

The next Corsets and Cuties performance is the 2nd Annual Amateur Contest & Holiday Kick Off, on November 18th. Doors open at 9 pm. Tickets are $18 in advance, and $20 at the door. The Cuties are opening the show, and then inviting contestants to the stage for audience votes. The audience chooses the winner who earns their place as the Cuties guest star in our Spring Show! Then the Cuties take over to kick off the holiday season!



Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

There will be Madness # 5 - A Flash Fiction Slam.


There will be Madness  # 5 - A Flash Fiction Slam was held at The Gallery at Avalon Island (37 S Magnolia Ave, Orlando, Florida 32801). Eight writers faced off head to head in three rounds and there was only one winner. Jessie Bradley was the MC. What does it take to compete?
1 - No greater than 250 word story for the first round
2 - No greater than 500 word story for the second round
3 - No greater than 1000 word story for the final round
The last writer standing will received a copy of both There Will Be Words chapbooks for 2016.

In this town where poetry readings are a dime a dozen, it is nice to let some prose develop characters and plot. The best part: the audience decided who wins each round (which means, feel free to bring as many friends as possible to help rig the competition in your favor). I felt that my vote counted. Only take eight writers could compete. To sign up, e-mail twbwsubmissions@gmail.com or on the invite page. The show started around 7:00. Connie Cassia Heinz took home the grand prize.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Jim Helsinger discusses Angel Action Wings


In Abraham Lincoln's Inauguration speech, he said   “We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory will swell when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.”This quote inspired Jim Helsinger to create Angel Action Wings after the Pulse tragedy. As he said, "Moises Kaufman wrote 'The Laramie Project', about the reaction to the 1998 murder of University of Wyoming gay student Matthew Shepard in Laramie, Wyoming, what could I do?" When members of a Baptist hate group said they would protest at funerals of the victims of the Pulse shooting, here in Orlando, Jim had to act.

The Orlando Shakespeare Theater and the Angel Action Wings Project teamed up to create massive PVC frame, and white linen angel wings in the hopes of blocking the 40-member "church" group and their hate-filled signs, the dumbest being "God Hates Fags." Thanks to donations, the Orlando Shakespeare Theater built each of the angel ensembles in their costume shop.  There was much confusion on social media about weather the hate group would actually show up, but Jim went with a gut feeling and had the wings built anyway. At a funeral, singing and the angel wings blocked the protesters who did get a permit to protest.

After that initial success some one suggested that 49 Angel wings should be built. Although he as in Colorado, he spearheaded the effort from there. Volunteers from Disney filled the Shakespeare scenic shop completing the wings with incredible speed. After a Pulse theater community event at the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts the 49 Angels marched outside the theater surrounding the large memorial that was in the plaza. A light drizzle accompanied their somber candle light march, but when they stood in silent vigil the rain stopped and a light breeze aired their wings. People exiting the theater where overwhelmed be the sight.

Theater has a way of framing grief. When in a dark theater surrounded by an audience, we realize that we are not alone. If others survive then I can as well. We do not live in a vacuum. 20 years ago Orlando was a conglomerate of corporations. In the last fire years, little theaters and restaurants have found a home here. Orlando's reaction and response to the Pulse tragedy is something to be proud of. We as a community will embrace gays, Latinos, and immigrants.

Jim grew up in Ohio and has shot guns. He believes in the second amendment, but if an individual is on a watch list, or has been denied a flight license, then why can he buy an assault rifle? In Newtown a young boy could walk into an alimentary school and shoot children. Nothing has changed. People need to accept their differences. There needs to be religious and racial tolerance. We need to change the culture of violence to a culture of love.

The 49 wings were just transferred to the Center which will decide how and when the wings will be used in the future. This will allow Jim to refocus his energies on running the Shakespeare Theater. They were just worn in the recent gay pride parade, where thousands cheered as the angels glided down Orlando's downtown streets. The angel wings need to keep flying.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Weekend Top 6 Picks January 28th and 29th.

Saturday January 28, 2017
9am to 5pm. Free. Renningers Steampunk and Industrial Show. Renningers.Mount Dora FL. ARE YOU READY......5th Year for Renninger's Steampunk & Industrial Show...time flies when you travel....we are planning the best Steampunk Show for our Time Travelers October 15 & 16, 2016 from 9AM - 5PM Admission is FREE, Parking is FREE...over 100 vendors with fabulous finds created and specially collected for this event....music performed by some of the best "Steampunk" musicians, Cog is Dead, Clockwork Knotwork, Sideshow Drummer, Florida Tribal Dance, Jig to a Milestone, John Babcock, all hosted by Phantasmagoria....delicious food including "High Tea"...and the 3rd Annual Splendid Teapot Race...steampunk horse & carriage rides, magic, giant kaleidoscope, Best Dressed Award, and all the special sights and sounds when Victoria and Albert collide with the Industrial Age!

Noon to 3pm Free.  USk Chinese New Year Sketchcrawl. Wat Florida Dhammaram of Kissimmee,FL 2421 Old Vineland Rd, Kissimmee, Florida 34746. Urban Sketchers International is going global on January 28th in celebrating the Chinese New year, Lunar year and highlighting the Asian culture.
We - the Orlando Urban Sketchers - are going to be there too! taking part in this Worldwide sketchcrawl Event! The participating USk chapters so far are: São Paulo; Singapore; Boston; Orlando; Japan; Hong Kong; Melbourne; Sydney; Beijing; Seattle ; Canberra; Los Angeles; Kuala Lumpur; Taiwan; Austin; Gran Canaria; Fredericksburg, VA; Raleigh; Cleveland; Charleston, SC; Cairns, AUS; Ilocos; Kuching, Malaysia; Waterloo Region, Canada and NYC.

We checked around town for local celebrations or the best location to highlight this amazing culture and found this gem nestled among Kissimmee countryside not too far from Lake Buena Vista.
The Wat Florida Dharmmaram Buddhist Temple will provide an exciting challenge to us sketchers. Bring on your gold and red paints, markers, pens or pencils, your sketchbook and your curiosity.
Gather your sketching friends to make this a terrific Worldwide sketchcrawl event!

Let us share with the World our take of this global event.
Post your sketches on Facebook at;
Urban Sketchers (group)
and at
Orlando Urban Sketchers (group)
or Instagram at #urbansketchers and
Instagram at #urbansketchersorlando

If you will be busy celebrating the holiday with friends and family, any sketch reflecting your special traditions would be a lovely way to share art about the beginning of a New Year! 
There is a meditation class at the Temple right after our sketching session if any of you wish to join. 3:00 to 5:00 pm directed by Than Chao Khun Sunan, Abbot of the Wat Florida Dhammaram.

8:30am to Midnight $25 DRIP 80's Night. DRIP 8747 International Dr Suite 102 (Behind Denny's and Senor Frogs), Orlando, Florida. Grab your legwarmers and head over to DRIP! We’re taking it back to the raddest decade in history - the 80s! Come re/discover some of the greatest fashion statements and musical influences of the time. Neon Paint Bar, 80s themed drink specials, dance party, Tye-Dye station, full DRIP show, classic movies, and a Thriller dance along! Squeeze into spandex and layer on that aquanet for a special discount ticket ($25)!
Doors Open at 8 PM
Age Requirement: 18+


January 29, 2017
10am to 4pm Free. Lake Eola Farmers Market. South East corner of Lake Eola Park, Orlando, FL, United States. 

Noon to 3pm Donation. Music at the Casa Violinist Lisa Ferrigno & Friends. Casa Feliz Historic Home Museum, 656 N Park Ave, Winter Park, FL 32789.

2pm to 4pm Free. Yoga. Lake Eola Park, 195 N Rosalind Ave, Orlando, FL near red pagoda. Every week.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Mary Tyler Moore died at age 80.

Mary Tyler Moore was born on Dec. 29, 1936, in Brooklyn Heights. After living in Queens and Brooklyn, her family moved to California when she was 8. Her father, George Tyler Moore, a clerk, and her mother, the former Margery Hackett, were both alcoholics and, Ms. Moore often said, imperfect parents. The eldest of their three children, Mary would outlive both her sister, Elizabeth Moore, who died of a drug and alcohol overdose in 1978, and her brother, John Hackett Moore, who
died of cancer in 1992 after Ms. Moore had assisted him in an unsuccessful suicide attempt. died at the age of 80 on January 25, 2017, Greenwich, Connecticut. Her family said her death, at Greenwich Hospital, was caused by cardiopulmonary arrest after she had contracted pneumonia.

Back in art school, I arranged to get a press pass to Beverly Sills retirement dinner. I followed the flock of reporters shooting photos which I later used to complete a series of sketches about the evening. Held in a hotel in Central Park South) the evening was glamorous. For a student illustrative journalist, it was pure magic.

I loved Mary Tyler Moore. I knew her mostly as the spunky female reporter on her signature show, "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" broadcast from 1970 to 1977, it was produced by both Ms. Moore and her second husband, Grant Tinker, who later ran NBC and who died on Nov. 28, 2017. She went on to more serious fare, including an Oscar-nominated role in the 1980 film “Ordinary People” as a frosty, resentful mother whose son has died.I always admired that performance that reminded me of people in my own life.

When I landed a dream job while in NYC, I threw my hat up in the air just as Mary did at the  intro to every show. There was always a poised quality to Mary. During the gala she wore a gorgeous dark gown with huge billowing sheaves. I had never seen or sketched anything like it.




Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Ugly Beauty at the Morse Museum.

 
The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art, (445 N Park Ave, Winter Park, FL 32789) hosted a documentary film series at lunch times once every few weeks about Art. This particular screening was about Ugly Beauty. Art critic Waldemar Januszczak argued that beauty is still to be found in modern art. Modern artist Damien Hurst made headlines and tons of money selling a great white shark in a glass case full of formaldehyde to a wealthy stock broker in the 1980's. This was considered ugly and tasteless by many. Waldemar pointed out that such art depicting death have occurred throughout art history. In the sketch depicted a still life done by Rembrandt of a cow carcass.

Has beauty disappeared from modern art? Several influential modern thinkers insist that it has. And this belief has inspired them to publish a clutch of recent books which claim that modern art is no longer capable of capturing true beauty: that beauty has gone from art.  Art critic Waldemar Januszczak fiercely disagreed, believing that great art is as interested in beauty as ever.

Beauty in modern art often has to do with the sterile and pristine open spaces where the art is exhibited. The museum itself becomes the source of calming reflection instead of the art. The world today needs beauty more than it has ever needed it, and modern art is one of its few suppliers.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Kraft Azalea Gardens

Kraft Azalea Gardens is a gorgeous place to sketch as the sun sets. This 5.22-acre public garden is located on the shore of Lake Maitland and is open all year from 8 a.m. until dusk. Lakefront, secluded and unique, this is Winter Park’s secret garden! This beautiful park is shaded by enormous cypress trees that add to the old Florida charm of the 13-acre property.

This gnarly old tree with light bark lights up a bright orange in that golden moment before the sun slips behind the luxury homes on the far shore. The winding bark seemed to hint at hidden female forms which glowed in the fading light.

I returned several times wanting to catch the colors and forms in oils as well as watercolor. Right next to this tree is a rare Banyan Tree which is native to India, Siri Lanka and Pakistan. It is often planted around temples and is considered sacred by Hindus and Buddhists. The free is not cold tolerant and usually only grows in an area south of Miami. A deep freeze in 1989 devastated many of these trees, so the tree in Kraft Azalea is quite rare. A Banyan in Saint Augustine was thought to be the most northern Banyan in the state but it died in the 1989 freeze. Some therefor believe this to be the northern most Banyan in the state. It is believed that the tree was first planted here in 1938 when Kraft Azalea Gardens was first developed by Notable nurseryman Martin Daetwyler who was hired to design the garden by well-known residents, George and Maud Kraft, Mayor Frederick Cady, Forney Shepard, Leonard Hackney and Mrs. C. F. Ward.

Knowing the history of this unlikely pair of trees, I plan to return for several more sunset sketches to watch them light up with a fiery glow. The twisted intertwining forms of the Banyan will be fun to draw.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Monday, January 23, 2017

Wedding of Nikole Cassandra McManus and Joshua Glenn Wilson


I was hired by Joshua Wilson to sketch his wedding at Wild Acres Villa in Paisley Florida. Joshua is a local pianist and I have sketched him performing at several Orlando events. Wild Acres Villa is locate far north of Orlando in the Ocalla National Forest. The paved road turned to dirt as dusk approached. The Villa is a gorgeous Swiss Chalet made of stone in the middle of nowhere. It sits on the shore of a huge lily pad covered lake. Folding chairs were lined up in rows in front of a half moon brick patio that had an ornate gazebo over it. Pine boughs were stuck into the ornate lattice. A loaf of braided bread sat on top of a cup of red wine. An easel held there ropes with a Celtic W emblazoned across the top of a wooden plank.

The ceremony began at 4pm. The pastor and Josh stood waiting for the bride. Bridesmaids walked the grassy lawn and lined up stage right. I had started my sketch, and miscalculated how many bridesmaids there might be. Each time a new brides maid came down the a is she would stand in front of me. I moved each time closer to the stage. The re were 8 bridesmaids in all, and 7 groomsmen. By the time vow we re exchanged, I we standing in a bed of vines. The bread was for a communion for the wedding couple. Josh and the pastor seemed to know one another and they smiled a each other when Cassandra stood at the back of the lawn for the processional,  Josh looked at her with adoration. He mouthed silent to someone in the front row, "I'm marrying her. . ." She began walking towards Josh to the sound of Balmorhea by Settler. Josh's face told the whole story. He was overwhelmed and then teared up. This was clearly the happiest moment of his life. The coup faced each other and held hands. I wished I could see her face. Since I w sketching I could only experience this ceremony while watching Josh.

The ropes on the plank we re woven into a braid by the couple. This part of the ceremony was inspired by a bible verse in Ecclesiastes. . . "Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A chord of there strands is not quick in broken." The couple each had personal statements before the a ceremony. The tiny box was for notes that the couple wrote to one another. These notes explain why they were so in love and what they admired in their partner. The box could only be opened in five years or when the couple was experiencing irreconcilable differences.

When the ceremony was sealed with a kiss, the lawn chairs were quickly gathered and the photographers work began as they shot large family portraits. Child on ran and played tag, as the sun turned the the tops orange. I walked to the edge of the lake and admired the incredible colors.

Tables were already set up on the lawn for the reception. I decided to start a second sketch digitally to capture the illuminated lanterns and the dimly lit guests. I sketched the guests as they sat down for their BBQ pulled pork dinner. The one disadvantage of this wilderness retreat was mosquitoes. Every one was talking a b them at dinner. A photographer offered me bug spray and I slathered some in my ears to discourage the buzzing. Several days later, I discovered the mosquitoes had been having a feast at my ankles. My swollen ankles had never been sucked so dry of blood. With my nocturnal sketch done, I retired inside with the staff to have a bite to eat. I left as the dancing started.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Why Books Are a Crazy Business (and thank heaven for that).


I attended a lecture with Harold Augenbraum, the out-going Director of the National Book Awards, at the Jack Kerouac House, 1418 Clouser Ave, Orlando, Florida 32804. In partnership with Rollins College "Winter With the Writers" program, The Kerouac Project  hosted the guest lecture.

Harold Augenbraum is Executive Director of the National Book Foundation, presenter of the National Book Awards. He has published seven books on Latino literature of the United States and translated several books for Penguin Classics including two novels by the Filipino writer José Rizal. In 2012, he co-translated (with Ilan Stavans) The Plain in Flames by Juan Rulfo and in 2013 Penguin published his edition of the Collected Poems of Marcel Proust. Last year he was awarded an honorary doctorate (honoris causa) by Concordia College (Moorhead, Minnesota) and in September he will be a Franke Visiting Fellow at Yale University.

Harold's talk was witty and light hearted. Some people might thin that the book publishing business would have shrunk because of the Internet, but the opposite is true, there are more books being published today than ever before. Making money in publishing is however tricky and as difficult as picking horses at the races.

As always there was wine and mingling after the lecture. There is always a creative excitement to these gatherings. If you want to experience the heart of the Orlando literary scene then get out to a Kerouac house event.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Phoenix Tears Productions Presents Fictional First Dates.

This original production written by Mallory Vance and Megan Markham, Fictional First Dates is a sixty minute musical that tells the story of Carson Devaraux and his search for a date to his sister's wedding. With the help of his best friend Piper, a Batista,  and a little app called Sparkler, Carson goes on a series of dates with  pop culture characters from Avatar Korra to Lavender Brown to Eowyn and many more who arrive at Cafe Nirvana. Along the way he makes new friends and discovers that dating fictional crushes might not be all it's cracked up to be. 

The rehearsal began with a musical number in which the cast of 8 celebrated all the perfect women who could be found with the app. A sweet telephone bell sound announced when a perfect match had been found. The first date was hilarious, with a woman who talked so fast and was so scattered that Carson never got a word in before she bolted.  One musical number with the two bachelors reminded me of a Sondheim song.  The lyrics were so fun and endearing however that I had to applaud. I found is funny when it was noted that even a Marvel comics character would be challenged dating today.

Dates happened seated stage left or stage right and sometimes at both tables. Coffee seemed to be this shows elixir of love. It was entertaining and frightening to see how easy it was for the dates to crash and burn. The women ranged from sweet and high spirited  to a dangerous warrior princess. To me it seemed obvious that Carson's best friend Piper was the perfect date, but their platonic relationship blew up in a rage. His fictional crushes kept him from seeing the importance of the friend he had come to rely on.

The play ends on an inspired high note with the entire cast singing on stage. Like seemed to attract like and the imagined was replaced by the real. I was laughing out loud through the whole show. The show has a very short run, so do at miss your chance to experience the comic dangers of dating from the safety of your theater seat.

Marshall Ellis Theatre 1300 La Quinta Dr #3, Orlando, FL 32809 

Remaining show times are:
Saturday January 21, 2017 from 7pm  to 8:30pm 
Sunday January 22, 2017 from 2pm to 3:30pm

Tickets 


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Weekend Top 6 Picks for January 20th and 21st.

Saturday January 20, 2017
9am to 4pm Free. A Cops n' Cars for kids Car Show. Oviedo Mall, 1700 Oviedo Mall Boulevard, Oviedo, FL. Law Reinforcement, fire an antique cars.

1pm to 4pm Free. A Women's Rally Central Florida. Lake Eola Amphitheater. In conjunction with the Women's March on Washington, we will Rally in solidarity as peaceful advocates and defenders of our rights, our safety, our health, and our families.
The Women's Rally--Central Florida is a non-partisan call to action, through unity in diversity, on behalf of all women. We invite supporters and defenders of all ages, races, genders, orientations, socio-economic groups, and religious beliefs to join us.
In the spirit of democracy, and honoring the champions of human rights, dignity, and justice who have come before us, join us and have a voice in our individual and collective futures.
This is an inclusive event, and everyone who supports women's rights is welcome.

SPEAKERS: TBD
Visit our web site

7pm to 9pm Free. Functionally Literate presents: Kelly Luce & Dan Lopez.  Blue Bamboo Center For The Arts 1905 Kentucky Ave, Winter Park, Florida. Our first Function of 2017 features readings & signings by:
KELLY LUCE, former Kerouac House resident and author of Pull Me Under.
DAN LOPEZ, Lambda Literary Award-winner and author of The Show House
Doors 6:30pm, show 7:15pm
FREE :: RSVP below via Eventbrite
Beer & wine available. Books for sale by Bookmark It.
Seating note: "Local" and "Orlandoan" level members of the Burrow Press Illiterati need not reserve a seat via Eventbrite. They also get a free drink at each event and a classy (trashy?) FuncLit koozie. Does this sound nice? Join the Illiterati: burrow press.com/hush

PARKING
Parking lots: available in grass lot across from the venue, and paved lot to the west.
Ride Share: If you sign up for Lyft using the code LYFTBP you'll get a free ride and they'll donate $10 to Burrow Press!
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Kelly Luce is the author of Three Scenarios in Which Hana Sasaki Grows a Tail and the novel Pull Me Under. Her work has been recognized by fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, Ucross Foundation, Sozopol Fiction Seminars, Ragdale Foundation, the Kerouac Project, and Jentel Arts, and has appeared in the Chicago Tribune, Salon, O, the Oprah Magazine, The Southern Review, and other publications.
Dan Lopez's work has appeared in The Millions, Story chord, Time Out New York, Los Angeles Review of Books and Lambda Literary, among others. The Show House is his first novel. He lives in Santa Monica.

Sunday January 21, 2017.
10am to 4pm Free. Lake Eola Farmers Market. Lake Eola Park, East Washington Street, Orlando, FL. Weekly. 

2pm to 4pm Free. Yoga. Near the red gazip0, Lake Eola Park, 195 N Rosalind Ave, Orlando, FL. 

10pm to 4pm Free. Comedy Open Mic. Austin's Coffee, 929 W Fairbanks Ave, Winter Park, FL. Free comedy show! Come out & laugh, or give it a try yourself.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Protesting the Trans-Pacific Partnership in Tampa.


The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) writes the rules for global trade—rules that were originally intended to increase made-in-America exports, grow the American economy, support well-paying American jobs, and strengthen the American middle class. The TPP is a trade agreement that brings together 12 countries along the Pacific Rim, in what would be the world’s largest free trade area, accounting for 40 percent of the global economy.

On the drive on to a Tampa protest, however, I was told there are economic reasons to believe that TPP will not only fail to provide the promised benefits but actually make things worse. TPP reduces tariffs between partnering countries but tariffs are already low. A more expensive dollar makes imports cheaper and exports less competitive in foreign markets. the result of that is of course corporations sending jobs over seas. Critics of the TPP reference the failures of NAFTA, which was first conceived during this period by the original champion of trickle-down, Ronald Reagan. Leading up to the 1994 elections, NAFTA garnered bipartisan support. Global Trade Watch’s assessment of NAFTA’s “20 year legacy” demonstrated that an estimated one million jobs have been lost to NAFTA.

Several dozen protesters gathered in Tampa to Protest TPP on a rainy Thursday. Banners were unfurled in a strip mall parking lot and then protesters marched a long a busy street as the rain fell harder. Police kept a polite distance. I resisted sketching until protesters gathered in a public park. It poured. The demonstration then moved to a building where a meeting about the partnership was taking place. The protesters were kept at a distance a way from the building entrance in the rain. A few cars honked their support. It is hard say if this protest made a difference but it is good to know people don't take destructive policies and back room politics lying down.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

My Queer Valentine.

I went to the Jack Kerouac House 1418 (Clouser Ave, Orlando, Florida) for My Queer Valentine).  Love is love, and no matter if you're single or taken, heartbroken or healed, it's an honor to be able to share stories of love. Just two days after Valentine's Day, four authors shared there own queer love stories.

Readers , included Sarah Viren, Claire Robin Thorne, Amber Norman and Ashley Inguanta (in the sketch). The evening was sponsored by Burrow Press and hosted by the Jack Kerouac House. The literary scene seems so much more vibrant than the visual arts scene in Orlando. There are literally dozens o reading events in town attended by crowds of eager listeners, yet artists seldom gather and share their work. Parker Sketch hosts a monthly Critique session which helps fill that void but otherwise artists only meet at openings.




Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Steam Machine, a Steampunk Event.


The Orlando Museum of  Art hosts a monthly exhibit for local artists on the first Thursday of every month. They rang in the new year with a Steampunk themed evening. Intricate steampunk sculptures and costumes dominated the 1st Thursday gallery that is to the left of the rotunda as you enter the museum. Outside the entrance, a series of blank panels were set up so that patrons could use the supplied spray paint cans to get their graffiti on. Actors from Phantasmagoria dressed in Victorian black and blood-red costumes circulated in the crowd, building the excitement with their turn- of-the century British accents.

 The most exciting performance of the evening came when the Phantasmagoria troupe took over the least populated end of the 1st Thursday gallery. John DiDonna stood on the circus-like, steampunk-themed barrel and shouted to gain patrons' attention. He would make any sideshow hawker proud. The crowning act was a woman who could swallow a sword. Members of the audience crowded close and John asked several to test the blade to verify its authenticity and sharpness. She swallowed the sword with ease. A second time she swallowed the sword and bent forward at the waist to take a bow. A woman was picked from the audience to extricate the sword. John shouted that the sword was resting on the actress's heart. The woman gingerly removed the sword, uncertain and then delighted like a child when she held the heavy blade. She ran back into the audience wide-eyed and beaming.

I chatted with Logan Anderson and tried to convince him to create a poem written on the sidewalk inside one of Orlando's 27 blue busking boxes. He explained that there is a paint that is invisible when dry and can only be seen when the pavement gets wet with rain. I told him to do it for the Blue Box Initiative and put out a tip jar as he worked. "The streets are paved with gold!" I shouted. Of course I've never made a dime sketching, but I don't put out a tip jar. He told me that for Art in Odd Places, an artist used gold leaf to fill cracks in the sidewalks in a certain spot downtown. The gold leaf has since washed away, but all the drains downtown send water to Lake Eola. It stands to reason that there must be gold in the lake basin. It is time to get those gold pans out and step into the lake to find that mother lode.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Paint Strong Orlando

The Orange County Library System (101 E Central Blvd, Orlando, Florida 32801) hosted Paint Strong Orlando which is a collection of original works created in response to the tragedy at Pulse nightclub by local Orlando artists. Local art-supply store Sam Flax of Orlando donated materials to artists who wanted to create works of art dedicated to the victims and collected more than 250 pieces, which were on display at the Orlando Public from September 15 through October 2016.

The Paint Strong Orlando opening reception displayed these pieces, which celebrate the strength of our community. Sam Flax gave a brief talk himself about how he isn't an artist but he wanted to find a way to offer creative expression in the wake of the Pulse tragedy. Paintings were hung on every floor of the Library. The reception was incredibly crowded. It was tough finding the right angle to sketch. Linda Saracino offered her advice on where I might position myself. The sketch was done to the vertical dimensions of the Library newsletter, because it was considered as a possible cover image. The "Pulse Love" painting was done by Betsy Brabrandt and the eye bleeding a rainbow was painted by Della Morte.

K.C. Cali sat on the library floor beside me as I sketched. She had a painting in the show at though I never picked it out as one of her pieces. She was upset about the loss that the evening was honoring. 49 people lost their lives, and 250 works of art struggled to find meaning in the senseless loss. I have yet to count all the sketches 1 have done in the wake of the Pulse tragedy. The number continues to rise. K.C. wiped away tears and I stopped sketching to talk to her. This was the first sketch I didn't complete during the course of an event.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

The Toxic Avenger roars into the Shakes.


I went to a dress rehearsal for the Central Florida premiere of The Toxic Avenger Musical! The show featured a live rock band on stage behind the action! Greater Orlando Actors Theatre is bringing this hilarious musical comedy to the stage.  The show has mature content and may not be appropriate for children.

Armed with superhuman strength and a heart as big as Newark, Melvin Ferd The Third (Adam McCabe) is out to save New Jersey, end global warming and woo the prettiest, blindest librarian in town. Don't miss The Toxic Avenger live on stage! It's like nothing you've ever seen before. The Toxic Avenger is based on the 1985 classic cult film from Troma Studios and features music and lyrics by David Bryan with book and lyrics by Joe DiPietro.

I'm a sucker for a musical and this show features me home state of New Jersey being slimmed by the rich and sleazy Manhattan. When Melvin is thrown in a vat of toxic green sludge, he becomes the super human but malformed Toxic Avenger. The only girl who could love this misshapen beast with an eye ball on his cheek would be the blind librarian, Sarah (Jillian Gizzi). She does an amazing job of being sexy, funny and always facing the wrong way when speaking to someone. This has to be every single guys fantasy, to be loved by a girl who is blind his flaws. In many ways, the show reminded me of "Little Shop of Horrors" with the geek suddenly getting his every desire. Though the Avenger won the love of his girl he could not let her touch him for fear that she would discover just how malformed he was.

As the show was being rehearsed, the set was still being painted. A former student of mine, Megan was busy painting a stone facade along with Julia Gagne on the stage. My favorite song had to be, "Bitch, Bitch, slut, slut, lire, lire, whore. I find myself humming that song at the most inopportune times. Being an in it in, run through in the theatre there were a few staging mishaps, but even those were so funny that they added to the shows entertainment value. There was plenty of gender bending and one sultry, hairy legged dame said to me, "Draw like one of your French girls" as she-he, walked up the aisle on a break.   This show is as entertaining as a bounce house full of kids in from of a strip club. Don't miss it!

STARRING: Leesa Castaneda – Mayor Babs Belgoody/Ma Ferd/Nun Adam DelMedico, White Dude Daniel Martinez, Ethnic Dude Director, Jay Levy Musical Director, Theresa Leigh Smith-Levin, Choreographer – Shawn Michael Lowe, Producer – Paul Castaneda.

The remaining show times are January 15,19, 20, 21 and 22, 2017 at 8pm in the Lowndes Shakespeare Complex in the Mandell Theatre (812 E Rollins St. Orlando, Fl. 32803). For tickets go to www.goatgroup.tix.com or call 407-990-1887.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

ODD 19 at Wally's Liquors.


Once a month, I host a free sketch outing called, ODD (Orlando Drink and Draw). The first ODD event of 2017 was held at Wally's Mills Avenue Liquors, (1001 N Mills Ave, Orlando, FL 32803).
Wally's is a landmark dive bar with a rocking jukebox, serving beer and stiff drinks since 1954. My original goal for ODD was to visit Orlando's best dive bars. Wally's definitely is x epitome of a drive bar. 

Upon entering, there is a liquor store to the right with a wide assortment of bottles. Opposite that, two men sat at a table looking at a sports event on the tube. The bar itself is in the back. A U shaped bar fills the tight space. The wallpaper of nude women is the first thing the caught my eyes. I picked a stool at the corner of the bar and ordered a Rolling Rock. Two guys and a gal sat opposite me. Patrons go to Wally's with one objective, and that is to get drunk. The two guys seemed pretty wasted. The woman, sporting a nose ring and a skull cap fingered her phone and kept her friends amused with the latest Facebook news.  Within minutes of starting the sketch, one of the guys came over to see what I was up to. It turns out he is an artist himself and he spoke for some time about the quick two minute sketches he once did of the patrons at the bar. I overheard some of their conversation which was largely about who had slept with whom and the emotional ramifications. Orlando is a small down, and news travels fast on the streets.

Another bar patron approached me and he said my sketch reminded him of the work of a short little French artist. He got down on his knees to demonstrate the artists height, and I shouted, "Toulouse!" He had seen a movie about Toulouse Lautrec which was made back in the 60s. He said if Toulouse were to enter Wally's, he would be sketching, just like me. Though my sketch wasn't finished, he asked if he could share what I was doing. He lifted the sketchbook like a sacred document and shared it with everyone who was in the sketch. A poet entered the bar through the back door. He was asked to chime in on t sketch and he said, "I only can express an opinion about literature, I don' know much about visual arts." Then he looked at the sketch and simply shouted "Damn!" He is a man who knows how to use words. The bar maid checked on my progress several times.

Linda Saracino showed up and then Viviana Castro. Viviana could only stay for 20 minutes so she rushed to get a thumbnail sketch done. Then Wendy Wallenberg showed up and she lit up the Internet with a selfie and controversy. Online, Elizabeth Maupin said she had bee warned to never go in the place. She is an artist but I haven't convinced her to whip out her sketchbook yet. Out in the parking lot Wendy kept yelling at cars that parked to near her Porche. The guys windows were rolled down, so they might have heard her. I was afraid she might start a brawl. 

The night was an adventure. We listened to some good Beetles music on the Jukebox, joked with the regulars and had a couple of beers while sketching. Then Wendy stepped in despite the smoke to make the evening true ODD.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Weekend Top 6 Picks for January 14th and 15th.

Saturday January 14, 2017 
 8am to 9pm $5 - $25 40th Annual Central Florida Highland Games. Saturday and Sunday. Central Winds Park 1000 Central Winds Dr, Winter Springs, Florida 32708. Celebrate the 40th anniversary of the games by watching traditional athletics, listening to Scottish music including bagpipes, learn about the Scottish Clans, and taste traditional Scottish food and beer. For more information about tickets and the games, please visit www.flascot.com.

5pm to 8pm Free. Crealde Night of Fire. Crealde School of Art, 600 St Andrews Blvd, Winter Park, FL 32792. Tour Crealdé’s studios and galleries, participate in hands-on workshops and demonstrations including a bronze pour, and register for specially priced classes. There will be live music, food, refreshments, and storytelling around the fire.

6pm to 8pm Free.  Art Splash. Downtown Mount Dora. Can sell art for free. Busking allowed.

Sunday January 15, 2017 
Noon to 3pm Donation. Music at the Casa. Casa Feliz Historic Home Museum, 656 N Park Ave, Winter Park, FL 32789. Matt Festa Jazz Saxophone. Members of the public are invited to visit our historic home museum to listen to live music and take a tour of our historic home museum and the James Gamble Rogers II Studio by trained docents.  Come as you are--casual attire, light refreshments served, children welcome! For information on upcoming "Music at the Casa" performances, visit Upcoming Events.

2pm to 4pm Free Yoga. Lake Eola Park, 195 N Rosalind Ave, Orlando, FL. Every week.

7pm to 10pm Free. Going Native. Grand Bohemian Hotel Orlando, Autograph Collection, 325 S Orange Ave, Orlando, FL 32801. Exhibit featuring local artists,
Donna Dowless
Tom Sadler
Margaret Juul
Greg Byrd
Phillip Anthony
Ursela Schwartz
Sally Evans
Alana Ohern,Elizabeth St Hilare


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

MTV Pulse Documentary at Falcon Bar.


MTV aired a documentary about Pulse survivors. Since I don't have a TV, I put out a call on Facebook, to see if anyone wanted a guest to watch the show. Melissa Marie let me know that they would air the show at Falcon Bar in Thornton Park. I arrived early and got a high top table with a view of the bar and The TVs.

The documentary was hard to watch in the beginning since it is all so close to home. Survivors got to meet people who helped them that night live on camera. Others visited memorials to honor friends they had lost. Two young women from Philadelphia had been visiting Orlando on the night of June 12th. They were both shot on their only experience of Orlando nightlife. Each woman was recovering in their own way. One seemed able to block the memories to feel secure day to day while the other relives the experience daily and is seeking on going counseling. Both are far from a full recovery.

Although the subject was raw and visceral, the show tended to feel a bit like a reality TV show in which incidents are manufactured for the sake of the drama. I'm glad I go to see the documentary however, which offered insights in to the emotional impact of surviving such a horrific public mass shooting. Only yesterday a gunman opened fire in a Fort Lauderdale airport. The gun was in his checked in baggage, which is legal as it turns out. I've always been afraid to even pack a shaving razor in my luggage since 9-11. This insane gun violence is out of control and any attempts at gun reform are always shot down.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Candlelight vigil at Walmart.


I went to a candlelight vigil at Walmart Supercenter, (3101 Princeton Street, Princeton, Orlando, FL). The vigil was in memory of Master Sergeant Debora Clayton, and Deputy Norm Lewis. Clayton was shot by Markeith Loyd, 41, while in pursuit. The shooter was a  suspect in the murder of  pregnant mother Sade Dixon who was believed to be killed by her ex-boyfriend. Clayton was shot after she spotted the suspect outside the Walmart on Princeton Street around 7:15 a.m. Monday. She was among the first wave of officers who responded on the evening of June 12th at the Pulse nightclub shoot in which 49 people lost the or lives.

After shooting Clayton, authorities said Loyd fled toward the Pine Hills neighborhood, where he fired shots at a deputy’s cruiser and carjacked a vehicle. Orange County Sheriff's Deputy Norman Lewis, an 11-year veteran, was killed in a crash as authorities gave pursuit. Markeith Loyd was still eluding capture on the day of the vigil. The reward is being raised from $60,000 to $100,000 for information leading to the arrest of Loyd.

As I walked towards the vigil, two police cruisers were parked in front of the Walmart entrance. A makeshift memorial was set up with live flowers, Mylar helium balloons  and a large stuffed plush dalmatian. Photographers shot photos of the memorial and the small crowd lit candles. Votive candles were left burning curbside at the memorial.   Loud motorcycles rode into the parking lot. I thought a biker gang had stopped to pay their respects, but the bikes were parked and the biker gang went inside to shop.

I heard a metallic bang to my right as I sketched. Some careless driver had backed up into one of the motorcycles. The driver paused for a moment like a deer in the headlights when he realized there were police everywhere.  Then he drove away. A mourner pursued a bit on foot trying to read the license plate. He only caught the first three digits. When the biker came out of Walmart an officer apologized. The hit and run driver had gotten away. The bike wasn't knocked over, so the damage must have been minimal. Cowards flee, believing they protected their boundaries.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Déjà vu at IHOP.

Driving back to my downtown apartment, I decided to stop at IHOP (647 E Colonial Dr, Orlando, FL 32803). I almost always get an eggs and ham melt and a Mountain Dew. The place was packed. I've never seen it so full. People must have been eating out in the gap between Christmas and New Years. There was a commotion as I entered. A waitress said "I'm not serving him!" "But he has money." replied the maitre d'. They weren't talking about me as it turned out. There was a disheveled man walking between tables holding two plastic shopping bags full of clothes. His fingers were like gnarled tree roots. He wore a black hoodie and a grey flannel jacket.

A tall waiter got him seated and served him orange juice and a coffee. He returned several times to check up on the gentleman who was too disoriented to order. He kept muttering to himself "Déjà vu' Déjà vu". He knotted his fingers into the shape of a gun, or a heart, then shouted, "Sean Connery is wrong". The waiter asked him to keep his voice down and once again asked if the gentleman would like to order anything. He said, "I like the juice." Since I've been sketching Pulse survivors and listening to their stories, I am on the defensive when it comes to unpredictable behavior. The man kept sprinkling salt in his hand and then licking it up. I needed to sketch to calm my nerves.

The folks at the table next to him got nervous and got up to leave. As they were leaving, he leaned over and shouted, "Can I have that!" He wanted a used napkin. The flustered costumer said "You might be better off getting a new one since this was used". He wanted the napkin regardless. The waiter returned and finally convinced the man to order some French toast and sausage links. He explained "I'll cover the bill, we need to look out for each other. Next time you see someone in need, help them out, you hear?" he told him. "It is what we do for each other. We need to protect our humanity." I'm not so sure the man understood. I've often thought that had some one reached out to the Pulse shooter in the weeks leading up to his insane flash of anger and hatred, perhaps he could have been defused. Perhaps in a perfect world, generosity and kindness can stop hate.

The stranger at the table in front of me finished before I did. In his conversation with himself, it sounded like he had just arrived in Orlando, as if he had been left here. Thanks to his guardian angel waiter, he was welcomed and respected at IHOP. I left the usual tip for the waitress who wanted the man removed, who happened to serve me. Then I found the waiter who had treated the man with such respect at the soda fountain and I gave him twice the tip, thanking him for how he treated the man. He seemed surprised but glad. I need to love and respect the people that remain in my life. This New Year brings uncertainty, but this holiday feast reminded me of what the holiday season is all about.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Monday, January 9, 2017

First light of the first day of 2017.


I usually host a New Year's Day party each year with my wife. Now that I'm separated, that didn't feel like the right thing to do. Besides my downtown apartment is too small. A friend suggested we see the sun rise at New Smirna Beach. The alarm went off at 5am and we were driving east by 6am. Thankfully there is just one country road that winds the whole way. The sky gradually grew lighter as we drove through farm country. Fog settled into the low lying fields and glowed a rich yellow punctuated by stately palms. As the sky got brighter, I got nervous that we might miss the first sliver of sun light. A long gentle incline up a causeway bridge opened up our view to the horizon. The sun had not peaked out yet.

The streets near the beach were deserted. We found a parking spot in front of Flagler Tavern, and then scrambled to get lawn chairs and sketching supplies ready. Runners in pink were beginning to assemble and register for a race in the beach side park. As soon as we sat down in the beach chairs, the first sliver of sun poked out above clouds at the horizon. A couple embraced in front of us while others shot cell phone photos. I documented the moment with a quick digital painting. We took a selfie holding up the January 1st Orlando Sentinel as we squinted into the morning light .

We spent most of the day relaxing on the beach, watching sand pipers as they raced down to the surf's edge and then back when the sliver of water rushed up onto the shore. They pecked incessantly, looking for tasty morsels just below the wet sand surface. Sea gulls would have angry aerial battles as they fought for crumbs of bread thrown up by tourists. Two seagulls became entangled in flight over a crumb, and they hit the hard sand with a thud. They shook it off and were back in flight in an instant to fight again. When the bread ran out they all stood on the mirror of wet sand looking stately and calm. They all faced the sun as if in deep Zen meditation.

A family strolled on the beach in front of us. The toddler was helping his dad by pushing the red wagon in the sand. His chubby legs moved with determination, he kept his head down watching every step. A heavy set bearded man stood and addressed the family. He was to far away for me to hear what he said. The teenage boy had on a wet suit and the man walked with him out into the waves. They spoke for a short while and then the boy held his nose. The man tipped him over backwards into an on coming wave. It was a baptism. Three others followed in quick succession followed by cheers from the onlooking family. A young girl who had bright neon red hair was dressed all in white. She gave the pastor a high five as she came back out of the surf. Another woman hugged him after screaming from the sudden plunge into the cold. The hug may have been affection, or a need for warmth.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

A Phantasmagoria Fire Dance to Ring in the New Year.


John DiDonna the producer of the Steam punk horror story telling group Phantasmagoria invited me to his home in Sanford for New Year's Eve. I of course expected lots of actors and actresses and was intent on sketching the midnight fire dance. House numbers were impossible to see at night, so we parked in the general facility and walked the neighborhood in search of the party. We walked past this state historic mansion even they I heard voices in the back yard. By process of elimination I finally decided that this had to be it. I heard John laughing in the backyard, so I walked across the lawn toward a gate on the side of the house. Of course most normal guest would knock on the front door, but I walked towards voices and then tried to open a stubborn old side gate. John saw me struggling and he came over to help me force the gate open. Bricks were piled everywhere and a garden hose slithered in all directions across the path. Guests were relaxing around a fire pit in the back yard. I shook hands with Seth Kubursky and hugged his wife Genevieve Bernard.

I was carrying a cold bottle of Prosecco and needed to drop it off in the kitchen. Dion Leonhard greeted us in the doorway. She grabbed the bottle and whisked us inside. She immediately started giving us a tour of the home. John and Dion had recent purchased the historic home from someone who had lost his partner and wanted to escape the memories. The price was a steal. An inspector working for John expected to find dry rot and structural problems, but after several hours, he pulled John aside and said "You have to buy this home." The original floor plans are hung in the entry hall and a giant staircase was decorated with dozens of framed theater posters. Dion pointed out what looked like a trap door in the floor. This is just on of six houses in Seminole county that has a basement. She opened the basement door, and I could see a skeleton reclined on a basement shelf. Original cabinetry, historic wallpaper and a giant four post bed really made the place feel like it had stepped back in time. The restoration is an ongoing project. Dion was very excited about a room at the top of the stairs that will soon be her dance studio.

The home has a ghost. The upstairs guest bedroom is where Minerva's body had been reclined for two weeks. It was a strangely long time to leave her lying there. It is believed that she still wanders the halls. It was getting close to midnight and Dion had to get ready for the fire dance. Guests gathered in front of the home  and the Phantasmagoria fire dancers used the sidewalk as a stage. I decided that the best view was "backstage'" across the street. My friend was confused by my choice and she huddled together with the rest of the theater audience on the front lawn. The count down began... 10, 9, 8, 7, . . . A midnight everyone cheered and the flames ignited. Each performer had a torch candelabra with four or fire flames in each hand. A car driving by honked its approval. Fireworks were exploding all around the neighborhood. It felt like I was sketching war zone. Hours later I would learn that a terrorist attack happened at Reina nightclub as hundreds of revelers marked the new year. In the report I read, 39 had died. That number has likely risen. It felt like June 12th all over again. At the Orlando Tournament of Roses Parade a float with a giant dove and rose pedal rainbow reminded us all of the senseless loss at Pulse.  New Year's Eve should be about new beginnings but madness prevails.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Voci Dance Paint Chips at Fringe Winter Mini-Fest.


I went to a Voci Dance dress rehearsal at the John and Rita Lowndes Shakespeare Center (812 E Rollins St, Orlando, Florida 32803). Much time was spent getting the projector situated while the dancers stretched.

Fringe favorite Voci Dance is back and for the Orlando Fringe Winter Mini Fest, bringing the word jazz master Ken Nordine’s 1960s COLORS album to life through a quirky supersonic multimedia dance performance that brings to visual expression, the eccentric hues of the artists’ palette through Voci’s signature blend of creative movement, humor, wit, and grace. Treat yourself to an experience where the unexpected becomes the norm.

This show is playful and fun. Each dancer added their own quirky personality to the colors they portrayed. When layered with the music, colorful projected visuals and the beat generation near to the beat generation narration the playful irony was contagious. Blue and yellow were dear friends, but nasty green stepped in between and separated the pair.  Yellow wallowed in sorrow until blue realized that together they could make their own shade of green. Purple us proud and white split the dark as she aimed a small flashlight at herself. Mud slithered on the dance floor. Though each color was unique in personality, the magic happened as they collaborated.

Friday, January 6th @ 5:45pm and Sunday, January 8th@ 2pm in the Mandell Theatre at the Lowndes Shakespeare Center.
Tickets.
More info.

Dancers: Lisa Mie, Katherine Fabian, Larissa Humiston, Leah Marke, Sarah Lockard, Tymisha Harris, Dede Ramos, David Gabriel.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Weekend Top 6 Picks for January 7th and 8th.

Saturday January 7, 2017
10am to 4pm Free. Sanford Farmers Market. Sanford, First & Magnolia.

5:30pm to 11:30pm Free. Doc Ellis Orchestra. Tin House Ranch 3300 Stone St, Oviedo, Florida.

8pm to 10pm Free, but order food and drink. Music Mount Dora. One Flight Up 440 N Donnelly Street, Mount Dora FL 32757.

Sunday January 8, 2017 
Noon to 4pm Free Family Funday: Mare Run. The Mennello Museum of American Art 900 E Princeton St, Orlando, Florida 32803. The make-and-take craft table is open from noon-2:30 p.m., and docents are available to give mini-tours of the museum. Then it's open house in the galleries until 4:30 p.m.

Noon to 2pm. Donation based community YogART class: 7 Chakra series. Artegon Marketplace 5250 International Dr, Orlando, Florida 32819. Every 2nd Sunday of the month YogART will be hosting FREE Color Therapy Yoga classes for the community at Artegon Marketplace (located in the community room across from section B6 - use movie theater entrance)
We are excited to bring you our "7 Chakra Series" that will focus each class on each individual chakra: breaking down it's color, meaning, location and function. This particular class will revolve around our second major energy point known as "The Sacral Chakra".
Color Therapy glasses will also be provided for those who wish to experience the effects of color therapy. Orange will be the primary focus for our Root Chakra but you may wear any color you want to work with.
This is an ALL LEVELS class which incorporates stretching, breathing exercises and light yoga poses geared around the Sacral Chakra.
We also have a color wheel on our site that explains the benefit of each color (glasses) Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, Violet. http://www.yogartinc.com/color-therapy-chart/
Please bring your own yoga mat and prepare to unwind
Check out our lovely YogART instructor's website for more info on her, and some great articles:
Any children who attend must be able to participate in the session quietly to respect the space of other guests. If your child is unable to partake without disruption we ask that you please refrain from bringing them. Thank you! Namaste ~
For more info contact us at:
info@yogartinc.com

2pm to 4pm Free. Script Reading Workshop. Sleuths Mystery Dinner Show, 8267 International Drive, Orlando, FL. Read and workshop plays



Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

#Hangaheart Kids Give Back.


Neema Bahrami who was the event organizer at Pulse, survived the horrific night of June 12th. The next day, he found a colorful felt heart taped to his apartment door. It said, "Love is free, hugs are free, we all love you." The heart was created by there children in his building, Gavin, Victoria, and Jacquelyn. Because of this sign of hope Neema decided to create the Hang a Heart Foundation, which promotes love regardless of religion, race or gender. He feels that, if any good came from that horrible night, it is that people are learning to accept the gay community. It has opened peoples hearts.

Hang-A- Heart, Inc. is in the last stages of becoming a 501c3 charity, and will be working to provide an outlet for children and adults alike to talk about love and acceptance, while creating the same felt hearts that started the movement. The Venue (511 Virginia Dr, Orlando, FL 32803) hosted an evening fundraiser with a night of children sharing their talents on stage. Every seat in the theater had a free felt heart on it. Everyone was asked to hang it where they will be reminded, and others encouraged by hope and kindness when they see it. The tag on mine said, "Be Awesome!"

The evening featured 18 fun and inspired performances. My favorite performance was a lovely duet by Maddie Mayer and Maddy Montz. They sang "For Good" from Wicked. Some people enter your life and inspire you for the better. Yet, people grow apart, and some friendships go unmended. The song hit me hard. The start of a New Year brings regrets. Neema was with a friend at the table next to mine. His friend was in tears and then laughed fanning himself. He was delighted with the emotions that flooded the Venue. I wasn't alone in shedding a tear.

Another notable performance was "Hard to be a Bard" by Anthony Morehead. There was something so endearing about a young teen concerned about the difficulties of being a creative genius. Anthony's comic timing was spot on.  On a darker note, Lauren Luteran danced a choreographed piece titled "Void".  The room turned dark blue and the spotlight illuminated her a flaming orange. Her movements were staccato and hard edged. She exhaled violently striking poses that reached for the unattainable. The striking performance best expressed the incredibly hard and emotional days following the Pulse shooting. Sydney Burtis countered with a rhythmic and fun tap dance routine set to, "Just Forget the World." Her feet kept the beat and then tapped with counter beats so fast it became a blur of motion. She beamed as she pushed herself to give her best.

Talents varied, but is so refreshing seeing young performers take to the stage and give their all. "Where there's children there's light. Where there's light, there's hope." 


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Slut Like Me


The AWARD-WINNING raunchy hit comedy, Slut Like Me, RETURNS at The Orlando Fringe Winter Mini-Fest:
Thursday, January 5 -- 10:00pm
Saturday, January 7 -- 10:30pm

Award-winning actor Logan Donahoo brings his all-new, tell-all, multimedia comedy romp! Learn ALL the sexy secrets and skills you need to release YOUR inner slut! Learn to flirt like a pro! Get the most out of your CraigsList ad! Find out what to do when the health department calls! Take notes, because class is in SESSION!

I had sketched this show at the last Fringe Festive and I know it is hilarious. It offers a crash course on how to survive dating in the Internet age. A this boudoir sketch session Logan read from Joy of Gay Sex as he lounged in his Hollywood style apartment. The book contains explicit pencil rendering of every conceivable sex act. I have to wonder if the illustrator embellished some of the anatomical details. Logan has a fun way of celebrating the joy and pleasure of sex with laughter. I kind of drew the aqua green dildo like a pickle, but it has a more appealing shape with it's head tilted to the side quizzically.

John and Rita Lowndes Shakespeare Center
812 E Rollins St, Orlando, Florida 32803
Tickets are available now.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Not a Photo at Henao Contemporary Center.


On December 9th, I went to "Not a Photo" at Henao Contemporary Center 5601 Edgewater Dr, Orlando, FL 32810 on exhibit was a collection of hyper realistic and photo realistic works from today's contemporary masters, including David Eichenberg, Matthew Cornell. Exhibit runs through January 7th, 2017.

Matthew Cornell gave a walk through of his paintings which were of all of his childhood homes. He traveled across the country with his wife to find all the places his family lived. One painting, titled Lascaux, showed the stark facade of a home at dusk illuminated by a street lamp. On either side of that  painting were panels that had crayon drawings of dinosaurs. In a video documentary, the story became clear. When he visited this child hood home, the owner offered to show him around inside. In the basement Mathew discovered the drawings from his childhood on the walls. He recognized his own mark making. On the staircase was his name and the names of his siblings. The present owner Could have painted over these child hood drawings, but he felt a need to preserve them.

On the invitation, Matthew had promised cake. Sure enough, he put a bright orange cake on a sculpture stand. It blended in with the photo real theme of the show with perfection. Most people assumed it was art. I wondered if it would eve be consumed. I had to move when a movie screen was lowered to show Matthew's artumentary. Some people sat down to talk art with me, so I had to keep the sketch fast and abbreviated. The temptation to try and aspire for photo realism had to be resisted. There just wasn't in our time. Life keeps interrupting long periods of patient mark making.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Monday, January 2, 2017

2016-2017 Arts Advosacy Day in TalIahassee.


I went on an organized bus trip up to Tallahassee in an effort to convince state legislators to not cut funding for the arts. The bus cost about $1800 to rent for the day and Terry Olson collected money from each passenger to cover costs. We left before sunrise fr the Orlando Rep parking lot. The sun began to rise as we approached the Florida Capital. Passengers split up into group and we were each assigned different Senators and Representatives to visit.

In 2015 Governor Rick Scott vetoed 17 million dollars that was slated to help the arts. In Orange County there are 3,993 Arts related businesses that employ 26,792 people. I am looking for a job in the Orlando Arts Community this year, so hopefully I will be among that number. I'm searching for a reason to stay in the sunshine state other than the sunshine. The creative industries account for 4.3 percent of the total businesses located in Orange County Florida.

The state wide request was for $45 million which would fully fund 532 qualified matching Division of Cultural Affair (DCA) grants. 50 of these grant requests were from Central Florida. 74.9% of visitors to Florida participate in cultural activities. Cultural tourists spend 137% more than residents. DCA grants leveraged over $5 million in other private and matching grants. 7.4 million children benefited and 194,849 artists participated.

Senator Dantzler gave a reassuring speech to the arts advocates at the end of the day. Bright day glow green caps were issued to attendees in the audience. There was bright optimism. Orange County was ultimately awarded $3,066,198 for a total of 38 grants. That is down from the $4,578,946 grants given in 2015. That was a loss of $1,512,748 for the local arts community.


Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

SAFE! Words! Poetry Slam!


I went to The Milk Bar Lounge (2424 E Robinson St, Orlando, Florida 32803) for a Poetry Slam. The slam featured two rounds with 12 poets. The  winner gets $50 and a chance to feature at a future slam! The headliners for the halftime spectacular were Blue Room Manifesto, two incredible poets who were be touring through Florida in August!

Four people in the audience were selected as judges. They rated poems from one to ten with decimal points so that there would be no ties in the judging. I enjoy sketching these poetry competitions with poets reading their digital devices before they go on stage. Judging is as much about the performance as well as the impact of the poem. M.C. McWin won the prize on this evening. She had a poem about her boyfriend's analytical coding mind that was both funny and deeply touching. The dog was the real winner all night, getting affection from every poet in the room.




Due to my impending divorce, I am no longer ALLOWED to sell my artwork. I therefore have no means of income. I apologize to any interested buyers. I will post when I am again allowed to earn a living.