Lilac Wine & Nina Simone

Just the other day, while listening to KPFA via Fresno, CA out of Berkeley, CA, I heard Lilac Wine sung by Nina Simone from the album “Wild is the Wind” (1966). Click here for a YouTube video. Try this alternate link if that YouTube link doesn’t work:

I was very moved by the song and especially Nina Simone’s rendering, so I spent some time in Procreate with her face based on this photo reference. See the lyrics below.


Lilac Wine

I lost myself on a cool damp night
Gave myself in that misty light
Was hypnotized by a strange delight
Under a lilac tree
I made wine from the lilac tree
Put my heart in its recipe
It makes me see what I want to see
And be what I want to be
When I think more than I want to think
Do things I never should do
I drink much more that I ought to drink
Because I brings me back you

Lilac wine is sweet and heady, like my love
Lilac wine, I feel unsteady, like my love
Listen to me, I cannot see clearly
Isn’t that she coming to me nearly here?

Katrinaversary & St. Peter’s Cream Stout

Annyth and I picked up 2 prints from Cuba that we had framed and then stopped off at the 17th St. Pub for a beer and some take out from J&R Tacos. I had a St. Peter’s Cream Stout that I snapped an iPhoto shot of because I thought I might try sketching it once I got home. (Nuffs been said about the 10th anniversary of Katrina, which we experienced first hand…well while on forced evacuation via CNN.)


Procreate. Note: I partially traced over the label on a separate layer…only the label, the rest is a freehand sketch using the above mentioned photo reference, as shown in this progress video.

Cruising with CSN

Let me begin with: “Mea culpa.” When I saw the news that Crosby, Stills, and Nash are cruising to London with a boatload of fans, see NYT article, this image came to mind faster than you can say “Quaker Oats,” click here to understand why. I’m a CSN and a CSN&Y fan from way back, maybe not all the way back, but way back.

cruising w/ CSN


Lessons on Graceful Acceptance: President Jimmy Carter, Teacher

Years ago an older colleague of mine pointed out that in society we have very few examples of people retiring gracefully. The observation, as I recall, was meant to highlight how so many of us continue to hold on to the vestiges of tangible and intangible, real and imagined relevance and importance long after their use-by date, at the heart of which is an unwillingness or incapacity to adjust to new circumstances. Well, while this may be true in many cases, it’s not true in all cases. Take President Jimmy Carter, whom I refer to as a teacher in this regard. Don’t take my word for it, watch him teach us how to embrace and accept ambiguity gracefully.

President Jimmy Carter

I used this reference photo in a freehand, side by side, humble rendering in Procreate with a tweak or two in iColorama.

Here’s one I did of Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter in August of 2018

Gold Gush

I started this off in unfamiliar ArtRage and went as far as I could go. Then I imported it into familiar Procreate and tweaked on. Then I messed with it iColorama until I called it quits. It rhymes with this one?


1st Impression: Coming up for air at our new house.

It’s been 3 months since the closing. Remember when we got the keys? The relocation encompassed a move of approximately 2.5 miles; but, that could have reduced, if only the Parsons Ave. ferry were in operation. Consequently, we had to go by way of Cuba! Well, we also had some work done: resurfaced a few floors, refaced the kitchen cabinets, repainted a few walls, and added a new countertop, backsplash, and some lighting fixtures.
Now it’s all about unpacking and learning how to operate the light switches.

Here’s a quick sketch in Paper by Fifty Three, tweaked in Procreate. Now back to unpacking before our first trip of the day to Lowes!
Coming Up For Air

mDAC2015: Sketchy SKETCH CLUB Live Model Drawing Snippet


What a treat to have participated in the Mobile Digital Art & Creativity Summit in Palo Alto, CA this past weekend! And to have a piece selected for and shown at this event, beyond words!

First, I should have my head examined for doing that and posting this on the day before we’re moving across town! So let me get this up and posted before I take leave for a few days; I’ll have to keep this very brief and leave out 99% of what I learned and what went down that actually had an impact on me.

I’ll limit my comments to a session on day #2 of the summit: Figure Drawing with Live Model by Jeremy Sutton, founder of featuring the illustrative Inky Bunny, live model. This was my fist try at SKETCH CLUB, which I had mistakenly identified as ArtRage, which I also…

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