Bob’s My Uncle

Posted by Mark in Mark's Sketchbook

Uncle Bobby was never the loudest guy in the room–who could get a word in edgewise with six siblings?–but when he did speak up it was always with wit and warmth and a mischievous smile.  And as nice as it was to have him around as an Uncle, I know for sure he was also an amazing dad and grandfather. Needless to say, we all wish he could have spent many more years chasing after the twins he adored.

A life cut short provides a painful but important lesson: Though none of us is guaranteed a set amount of time on this planet, you can always take ownership of how you’ll be remembered. If you can manage to be as kind and caring as Uncle Bobby, you’ll leave behind people brimming with fond memories, gratitude and love.

I’m sketching with the man in the mirror

Posted by Mark in Mark's Sketchbook

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Feeling absolutely no inspiration to draw? Force yourself to do a self-portrait! For added difficulty, do it in smeary ink with a camera over your shoulder.

One Last Nice Mess

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I really enjoyed the recent film “Stan and Ollie” starring Steve Coogan and John C. Reilly  as the title characters, at the end of their careers, embarking on a1950s tour of the United Kingdom. This painting depicts a moment during that time.

And here’s a time-lapse of the digital painting in Procreate:

Watercolor Welles

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Orson Welles’ “new” film The Other Side of the Wind hit Netflix this weekend, along with two separate making-of documentaries. Here’s the director, much younger, during his radio days.

Sit on it once more, with feeling

Posted by Mark in Mark's Sketchbook

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Loving the new show Barry on HBO, and its many scene-stealers, especially Henry Winkler as over-the-top acting instructor Gene Cousineau.

Bergmania

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I enjoyed a re-watch of 1944’s Gaslight last night. If you lived through 2017, then you’ve basically already seen it!

Party’s Over

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From the party of Lincoln to a nakedly cruel cult. Congratulations, billionaires–you finally caught a break!

It Was Unity Killed the Beast

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I love old movies, but I’m happy to see all these handsy gorillas getting what fer.

E=Major Commie?

Posted by Mark in Mark's Sketchbook

Prompted by a short essay from Children of the Days: A Calendar of Human History.

For twenty-two years the FBI tapped his telephone, read his mail and went through his garbage.

They spied on Einstein because he was a spy for the Russians. So said his bulky police file. The file also said he had invented a death ray and a robot that could read minds. It said Einstein was a member, collaborator or fellow traveler of thirty-four Communist front organizations between 1937 and 1954, and was honorary chair of three Communist organizations. It concluded: “It seems unlikely that a man of his background could, in such a short time, become a loyal American citizen.”

Not even death saved him. They continued spying on him. Not the FBI, but his colleagues, men of science who sliced his brain into two hundred forty pieces and analyzed them to find an explanation for his genius.

They found nothing.

Einstein had already warned, “I have no special gift. I am only passionately curious.”

Sally Sallies Forth

Posted by Mark in Mark's Sketchbook

Believe it or not, if you wade past the spam bots, name-calling and nuclear threats, there’s a heartwarming, human side to Twitter. Recently, 94-year-old Rose Marie, best known as Sally Rogers on the Dick Van Dyke Show, joined the fray, probably expecting it to be the soul-deadening echo chamber it is for most of us.

In a few weeks she’s gained about 100,000 followers, all coming out of the woodwork to express their love, admiration, and awe at her 90-year(!) career.

So, here’s adding to the pile. For reference I used a scene of Sally Rogers singing “I Wanna Be Around” in the second season of Dick Van Dyke.