Monday, May 4, 2015


It's been a while since i was last in Chicago and it's nice to be back.
I'm here for a few days for a graphics design conference.
Before going to the conference, i had a few moments to go sketch one if my favorite sculptures in the city - the 'cloud' or the 'bean'.
I was sketching and a guy came over, complicated my sketch, then gave me a polaroid print of me. That's the first time anyone gave me a photo!
Beautiful day!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Penpen - We miss you.

Penpen came into our lives almost 8 years ago.

We used to live in Pittsburgh and drove couple hours to a Bengal breeder we located in Ohio.
There were numerous couple week old kittens we saw and the idea was that we would pick one out then return in a few months to pick them up once a little older to take home. All of them were cute and hard to decide since at that age personality is hard to tell.
Later we were shown another cat that was expected to be purchased but was canceled at the last minute - that was Penpen and we quickly fell in love with her playful personality an her beautiful eyes. Upon meeting us, she wouldn't stop playing. We took her home that day.

PenPen loved to play, loved people and was not afraid of anything including water and little children. On occasional trips out of town, we used to take her with us in our car prepped with food, water and a litter box.

PenPen moved a lot so most sketches of PenPen were done when she was sleeping - mostly sleeping with kana or sleeping on her lap.

Occasionally I was able to get sketches of her when she was 'half' awake - still half asleep so she didn't move around too much.

Here's a fun one of here in the kitchen area - she just sneaked right in.

I also had a few fun sketches I didn't even know I had of Penpen, like this one when I was practicing my portrait sketching by looking at a mirror. She came next to me while I was sketching so she was included in.

She occasionally also came and sat on my laptop - they get warm so I could see why she liked it so much. Here I'm watching 'Amachan' - a very popular Japanese TV show at the time and I had to shrink the window small and move to the right so I could see.

My favorites scenes were when Kana and PenPen were sleeping together. It always made me feel warm inside and gave me the strength to want to work harder and to take care of them. On the weekends I had time to do a few sketches of them.

Mid January this year, PenPen started acting a little strange.
She wouldn't come greet us at the door when we came home like she always did, and she tended to sit away from us which she never did before too. After 3 days of this, we decided to take her into the hospital to have her checked out.

At first we were told she was slightly anemic,
then a few days later we were told she had Leukemia.

We talked to a specialist doctor and discussed all options on what we could do.
There were very little we could do and the most we could do was to be by her side as much as possible.

I sketched her everyday to be able to cope with this sadness.


The very next day after she died, we took her to a pet funeral place in Rhode Island.
We were able to spend some time with her to say good bye in a private room and they took care of PenPen very well.

Penpen was 7 years old, almost turning 8.
We miss her dearly.

She was the worlds greatest cat for us.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Shellabration Week 4 - Puerto Rican Theme

This weeks dish featured a Puerto Rican Chillo Frito - Red Snapper.
Really good and I'm starting to really like this Shiraz too!
I was told this wine couldn't be purchased at as store though, bummer....

I'm going to be missing out on week 5 Shellabration since I'll be out of town on a business trip next week. Another bummer.....

Shellabration Week 4 & B&G Oysters

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

B&G Oysters: Shellabration Week 3 - 1 Whole Fish!

Here's week 3 of B&G 'Shellabration'.
This week featured one whole Dorade Fish!
Also came with Fennel/pork lasagna and warm Squash salad. 
We were able to eat and head back home before the huge blizard hit Boston. Excellent food as usual!

Chef hard at work frying the fish
Nice glass of Syrah to go with the meal.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

B&G Oysters: Shellabration Week 2

My wife and I went to B&G Oysters for their weekly specialties called "Shellabration" where each week they have a different pre-fixed course. This week reminded us of the great tapas we had in Barcelona. They have 5 more weeks of Shellabration and we're already looking forward to next weeks food!

B&G Oysters: Shellabration Week 2

Monday, January 19, 2015

Coldest sketch ever!

Well, I think I topped my previous coldest sketch by sketching outside at 15 degrees F (-9.4 C)!

The day was acutually beautiful but what made it most painful was the fact that I had no gloves for this.

My fountain pen containing Noodlers Ink stopped flowing and watercolor was almost impossible to apply on since it kept on freezing up.

Here I used my warm pouch to keep my hands warm but it didn't help too much.
My hands turned bright red since and I was starting to get numb.

It was a fun 15 minutes though.
Additional color was added later on.