Dec 30, 2012

Collage : Positive Words

I started this series for fun and experiment almost a year and a half ago. It's been fun and rewarding. Didn't sell many of these pieces, but I enjoyed making them, and it every one of them felt like a stepping stone in the right direction towards something. Can't say yet what that is, but enjoy this collage of "Positive Wall/Word Affirmations". They are hand made, hand painted, and in some cases hand carved reminders to look on the bright side.....You are worth it! Store

Dec 27, 2012

Childrens Portraits #6 and #7- Malaya and Jules

It was awesome painting these two. They are a beautiful, shy, silly, cute brother and sister team that I've had the pleasure to meet and kick it with. I think Mom and Dad like them, but I'm wondering if they actually like em. Thanks to their momma MeLinh I had the chance to paint them several times, as she hooked some family up with gifts. Its fun painting them more than once because I tried a few new things. Anyway, I dont remember their exact age, but they are of a Filipino, Vietnamese, and European American mix. Check out some process from one of the portraits.
if youre interested in getting a portrait painted, please click HERE.

Dec 22, 2012

Reflections of Healing- Brett Cook

Check out this video explaining a very large and extensive project that one of my mentors Brett Cook (Muralist, Graff writer/ Teacher) has been spear heading for the past 5 years. I was very fortunate to get the chance to help out, along with many other prominent and up & coming Bay Area artists. Take head to the healing...

Dec 17, 2012

Muphoric Sounds 27-Maylee Todd

Just did a quick write up about Maylee on Muphoric Sounds. Now I wanna visit Toronto. Go watch the video....

Inspiration board 14

From Left to Right, Top to bottom: I've been painting and drawing many children from diverse backgrounds. I look for alot of children from many backgrounds. When I saw this girl, i thought "if I had a daughter, she might look like this". Red subway installation-thought this was amazing, cant remember by who though. Arabic calligraphy. Tribe- a Detroit based Jazz Collective/ Zine. Character design. Character design by Carolina Cuenca-love her style. Shinji Kimura again from the Black Tekkon Kinkreet book. Character design. Character design by Didier Conrad. Brigada by Enrique Fernandez. Dope "C" graphic typography. Weldon Irvine-The Sisters LP, really his music in general. The library-my 2nd home. The Hummingbird's Daughter by Luis Alberto Urrea. Character design by Pixel Pirate Studio. And lastly, the stop motion animation film Paranorman (set design).

Dec 15, 2012

Fiscal Cliff = Bull#$%&

Piece I did for ART STRIKE's artsy action against Support Art Strike's effort to sepak up instead of remain silent by passing the word.

Dec 12, 2012

Jazzin and Pinched-Animations

Dope animations by Joel Corcia, Wandrille Maunoury, Bung Nguyen, Thomas Reteuna, and Bernard Som

Pinched from David Vandervoort on Vimeo.

David Vandervoort

Dec 11, 2012

Childrens Portrait #5- DeAndre

DeAnre's mom was nice enough to hit me up for a portrait of her boy (Thank you Krea and Tyra!). He looks very young in these pictures, but I'm told that he's a teenager now. His mixture is African and European American. And he loves Brazilian Capoeira, hence the blue, yellow, and green on the first one. Check out the process and let me know what you think. If you're debating getting one done before the holidays, holler at me soon.

Dec 9, 2012

Positive Wall Affirmation- "Dance"

The original reason I chose to do this series is because I wanted to have more positive messages around me. A lot of the words or typography I see daily are using words that are derogatory, shaming, or superficial. I wanted to create artwork that used a word or phrase that people would feel empowered, elevated, or even inspired by, just by walking past it.

This is a hand painted sign I made for fun using some patterns Ive developed doing the light switches and some typography with a positive message/feeling. If you feel it, pass it on, use it in your inspiration board, whatever...Spread positive energy!peace. And dont forget to "dance". If you can walk, you can dance.

 Store Link

Dec 3, 2012

This Saturday (Video)

Come through, I'll have switch plates, Positive Wall Affirmations, and more....

Nov 30, 2012

Childrens Portraits #Four- Nia

I chose a more serious facial expression for Nia. This is such a beautiful little girl. I have been fortunate to talk, play, and sit with this little one and she makes all kinds of faces, but shes still very young so she's still learning how to make em. Ms Nia, a mixed baby of Korean and Chinese families; 4 months young.

Nov 27, 2012

Levi Ryken

Watch live video from doublefine on TwitchTV This is my brother Levi Ryken since 93/94. I could write a long paper about this dude, his talents, character, kindness, and over all awesomeness but you'll get a glimpse of it through this video of him pitching his first video game. Now, Im not a gamer at all, but when he explained the theme and concept of this game and the place where he works (Double Fine); i really understood why he loves it so much. If you are an investor, gaming writer, or supporter of this kind of artform keep an eye on him. He's doing great things and his name will be much more of a household name verry soon. LINK

Nov 25, 2012

Black and Latino (Video)

Now i just have to find one about being Black and Asian, then native, then mestizo, then....ok getting ahead of myself.

Nov 23, 2012

Daddy thoughts 2- Run

"We all running in some form or another. If not to score a touchdown, just to go a step further.....I wont waste my life time going in circles. I know where Im going and Ima get there. With focus, I go for the gold like Jackie Joyner, the race is not for the swift. Its a test of endurance" -Stic Man


Since I have legs and can walk,I run. I was inspired by reading some daddy blogs today after putting my little one to sleep; to write. A fellow parent recommended I get hip to the Dad blogosphere, which I had no idea was so HUGE. More on that later. I've been running again weekly for about 9 months now. I've had spurts and lapses here and there before then and now as well.

I 've been running my entire life. Sometimes from problems, danger, responsibility, or even opportunity. I was never an atheletic cat, but I love walking for long distances in any direction and when I was in junior high I truly developed a love of running. The shortness of breath, the sweat, the adrenaline that kicks in as your second, or even third win hits.

Now though, I run to prepare myself. I run to stay loose, toward no specific destination, but to stay ready. I'm a father and I have to keep up with my little boy among other things. Today as we played and kicked the soccer ball around and ran with another dad and his kids, i was glad that my lungs hold up. I hope to stay fit for the entireity of my life so that I can see as much of his life as possible. I dont run far. I dont run the fastest, and I definitely dont have the best running shoes, but I do run. I do go a little bit longer each time, and I do it consistently. Add a sprint for the last to yards and 10 pull ups or more at a local park and Ive got myself a good workout.

I run at night, usually after my boy is a sleep; or after ten if he is not with me. I do it for myself, my health, for my life, and so I can keep up with this little prince.....I run to build something in myself, in my career maybe, my art, or my soul too.

 "A journey of a thousand miles begins one step at a time" -Lao Tzu

Nov 22, 2012

"People Over Profit" Black Friday, Boycott Walmart

Feel free to use this poster to spread the word. I'm submitting it as part of Culture Strike's "Artists Vs Walmart" action for Black Friday. I dont need to tell you how much of a corporate blood sucker Walmart is, but feel free to read up on some of the reasons why folks are striking and demanding better treatment HERE.

Nov 20, 2012

Holiday Slangin'-Oakland Dec 8th

East Side Arts Alliance I'll be here slanging (Switch Plates, PWA's, prints, paintings) , come through if you're in the Bay Area.

Nov 16, 2012

Handstyles 1- Free Palestine

Graphic by Robert Liu-Trujillo. Always in support of a free Palestine against the zionist occupation of Palestine. 

Dig this? Check out these letters for Hyphen or Colorlines magazine
Check out this Zach de La Rocha quote 
Here's some more letters in support of Palestine 

Nov 15, 2012

Book Cover Flashbacks

These are older illustrated pieces but I always liked them! Cool book covers.

Nov 6, 2012

Character 36 -Faces of Jae Jeu

In korean "Jae Jeu" translates to ______. Answer that, and i'll send you a free postcard. Achem, so here is some part of a bunch of stuff I've been working on. Practicing character designs.

Nov 5, 2012

Character 35-Paranorman w/a Flat top fade

What if Paranorman were Black, Dominican, Haitian, or Cuban? My homie Levi hooked me up with The Art of Paranorman book and i get hella inspired. So much beautiful work of a large team went into that film, which I saw and loved. Now I thought he'd look fresh as a little brown boy with a flat top. Cool, no? Go see this film if you haven't already, it offers so much hand-made detail that a lot of big budget animation flicks do not. Love the music in the original trailer too. Selling prints here.

Dig this? Check out this painting I did of Katara and Toph from Avatar the Last Airbender

Nov 1, 2012

Green Smoothie by Enjoli

The homie Enjoli, said she was going to do a video and blog about this, here it is another example of folks trying to live healthy and giving knowledge freely!

Positive Wall Affirmation- Shine

It's been awhile since I did one of these. They're fun and good "energy" wise. Simply put, just positive words to have around the house, class, or office. More coming soon. Theres more info on my Etsy store... LINK

Oct 30, 2012

Typography 25- Ulysses Owens Jr. (drums)

Just getting hip to Ulysses Owens Jr. and his sound. I found him via The Revivalistist and his drums are clean, rhythmic, and I can already tell i'll be hearing more about this cat in the near future. Look for him in the Christian McBride trio. U is for "Ulysses". Check out "Party time" , "Good and terrible", and this ill brush practice.

Oct 29, 2012

Oct 17, 2012

Short Story 14- Purple Dreams

Purple dreams
and hot dish water steam
the walk to the corner store
its mean

The way I see it aint the way it is
a world of positive reflection
for me, ronnie, and her kids

We got feelings too 
and sometimes I'll just spray it 
I look for it hard everytime at the billboards 
but they dont ever say it 

Our voice is missing
So we decide to put it in
bet Rapunzel and Kareem from down the block will be inspired
let the 7 train imagination begin

Oct 12, 2012

Childrens Portrait #3-Maria

This is Maria, she's a cute little girl from Richmond California, I'm not sure how old she is now but I'm guessing 5 or 6. She is Polish, Irish, and English and her favorite colors are red, green, and white. Big thanks to her momma Joanna for letting me paint her. If you are just catching this new series, this is going to be an on going series of small paintings; portraits of children from all ages and many backgrounds. If you know a little one or a parent with a cute little one, hit me up and I'll paint them!

Oct 11, 2012

Jazz Portraits 27- Jaspects (band)

My my my what a group this is. I'm just starting to delve into their sound. Yes I'm late. But then, I started....right? Jaspects is a group of cats who met at Morehouse, see Vanessa Warren's write up on them from the Polkadot LP. They play hella instruments, they rhyme, sing, and they got fashion sense. What else could you ask for in a Jazz Band? Um, so the songs i'm feeling by this multi-instrumental, multi-talented ensemble are "Fallin", West End Station, Be-Hop, and My way to love. If you're just tuning in, Ive been working on this Jazz Series of (Rough) portraits and typography for more than a year and its almost done. If you have not heard of some of the musicians like this group, check out what the individual members are up to. I found Henry Conerway III of Jaspects on twitter for example. From one artist to another...

Oct 5, 2012

Childrens Portrait #2- Mia

Hello everyone, this is Mia. She's a cute lil one from Berkeley California (I believe) who comes from many cultures, Filipina, Mexican, German, and Irish. Her favorite colors are purple, green, and blue. And her momma Nikki commissioned me to paint her this week. I've known Nikki since , hella long. Can't wait to meet this lil girl. Wow, second one down already! If you know any parents with cute lil' children tell em to holler at me! I'm painting 100 portraits of children from all backgrounds and ages!

Oct 3, 2012

Funkdoobiest, Little Dragon rmx, Kooley high

These are not new, but on repeat right now. Funkdoobiest LD remix by Syd the KId from ofwgkta kooley high

Hernandez Brothers on NPR (audio)

I have yet to fully read one of the many volumes of "Love and Rockets", but I was drawn to it the first time I saw "Locas" on a graphic novel title. One day i will get all the books, but for now it was hella tight to hear about some of the inspiration behind the story through music with Los bros Hernandez.

Oct 2, 2012

Childrens Portraits #1 (Video)

Peace, so this is a first for me, making a vlog. I don't do editing or shooting, but what the hell. I'm am steadily at work on my next short story and several other things; namely my first childrens book. In order to build my audience or the folks who will appreciate what i do outside of immediate family and friends it has taken years. And I will definitely be asking you for help in spreading the word when the time comes again.

 For now, get ready for some cute portraits of children of all ages and backgrounds as I let folks know about the stories I'm telling. Please comment, and or share with like minds. And by all means, share this with anyone you know in the realm of childrens books, YA Novels, shit, animation, any one into storytelling in general. Enjoy.
Peep these shots of the steps of doing a quick painting of my little lion. He loves making faces, but I decided to pick a relatively simple one to paint.
And the final. I like the colors because he has a warm and fiery spirit. I chose several patterns to illustrate the fact that he comes from so many different cultures. If you would like a painting of your child, go HERE

Oct 1, 2012

Re-Thinking Schools Magazine

Big thanks to my homie Melanie who hooked me up with the art director for Rethink Schools Magazine. Rethink is a magazine with great resource for educators. I had never heard of it until I was contacted about doing an illustration for it. But I'm glad I found it. I'm glad they exist because they cover a lot of issues with race while offering many resources for educators. For example, racism, ethnic studies, teaching techniques, bi-lingual education, etc. In this issue theres short article about the action that happened here in the Bay Area at Lakeview Elementary. The author whose piece mine was paired with writes about what its like to teach her students about slavery. The article talks about what its like to constantly learn about your history through defeat. Waahida Mbatha wrote it and talks about how she has sought to redefine how she teaches African and African American history. A very interesting read. If you’d like to support ReThink Schools, you can get the magazine here.

Sep 25, 2012

Muphoric Sounds 25- Ana Tijoux (MC)

Just wrote a quick Muphoric Piece about this video. If you havent checked out her new video shot by B+, do it now and check out all the others as well. Ana is putting it down consistently and fiercely. Congrats on your Grammy Nomination sis. photo credit: OndaTropica

Sep 24, 2012

Typography 24- Oliver Nelson (Saxophone)

The first time I heard Oliver was on a Blue note Compilation my mom had. Not as well known to me and still a bit of a mystery, I dug up some new favorites from him such as Disillusioned, Black, Brown, and beautiful, and Melissa. My favorite song by him is "Stolen Moments".

Sep 23, 2012

Changing the face of publishing (video)

Changing the Face of Publishing from Facing Out on Vimeo.

So much information, relatability in this, and just affirmation that im not crazy. Thank you "cool poc writers god"

Sep 18, 2012

Typography 23- Linda Oh (Bass)

Found Ms Linda Oh while checking out the "Girls In the Band" flick. I'm new to her stuff, but you can hear the good things that are about to come from her. Peep this performance of Monk, her songs Morning sunset, "Deeper than Happy", and the remix

Sep 17, 2012

Muphoric Sounds 24- A Taste of Honey

If you ever get a chance to pick this "A Taste of Honey" record up at a record store, yes a "record store" get it! Its a beautiful album. Peep these fotos of them:
I just did a piece on this group for my IN THE TRUNK section, go read please and leave feedback, prose, rants, something.

Sep 14, 2012

Chicago Teachers-Rebel Diaz

Nuff props to Rebel Diaz, "Response-ability" They rather put the kids in jail Shackle em with chains Then provide an education to challenge the brain -Rod Star Inspiring

Sep 4, 2012

Jazz Portraits 26- Patrice Rushen ( Piano/ Vocals)

Patrice Rushen is an OG musician. Been listening to her music for awhile. I think i first flipped out when I heard "Where there is love", because Mobb Deep used that for Temperature's rising. But aside from all the great soulful songs she did from ablums like Pizaz, Posh, and Patrice; she started with more experimental, electronic, and funky Jazz. Some of the songs I dug up that I liked were Before the Dawn, Stepping Stones, and Puttered popcorn . Long live Patrice, multi-instrumentalist, composer, and funk goddess.

Aug 29, 2012

Arts In Motion Fest+ Beats Rhymes + Life

Was invited to paint at this event with the talented Josue Rojas. We kicked it and hung out with some young artists on the come up. Big thank you to Beats Rhymes and Life org for asking me out and for throwing this event with HARD
Josue rappin' and teachin'

Young Cesar came and rocked with me on this canvas

photo by Erricka Lewis
I'll post the video from the event once its done. Fun times.