Monday, November 13, 2023

Summer 2023

It was a busy summer, since March of Robots 2023. The biggest and saddest news was that my brother had cancer.

It was Pancreatic Neuroendocrine Tumor with metastasis to his liver which was mostly comprised. I wasn’t sure if I should post about it because it was his fight and his choice to share. But, I thought that he would appreciate a little call-to-action. 

One of his biggest concerns was not having done enough before leaving this world. He was a software programmer, who has worked in the field for decades. He was also a tech nut who’s always tinkering with the latest gadgets. One thing that he wanted to do was inspire someone to become a programmer — particularly with the Python program language. 

If you are thinking about programming as a career and this message finds you, I hope that it’s enough to encourage you to take another step in that direction.

Also, if you are over 50 or have a family history of cancer, please consider getting screened sooner than later. 

He was in the hospital many time, towards the end. When I went to visit him, I made him a get better card with wishful thinking. 

This is a Joe-bot, using Python to program the cure for cancer. 

Joe passed away in late May a few weeks before his 58th birthday.

I managed to get in a quick drawing for Star Wars Day, on May the Forth. Star Wars, especially the original movies, were something my brother and I shared a passion for, when we were kids. 

Around the same time, I was asked to do a commission. My friend David’s son was getting married and he wanted a robot version of the happy couple. Here, I’ve captured them as they start their new lives together, heading towards an amazing future. Congratulations Sam and Emily! May you have many wonderful adventures together.

This is a repost from Inktober 2022 because I wanted to mention that I also collect and shoot pictures of tint diecast cars (Hot Wheels, etc). If you are remotely interested in that as well, head over to my other account and check it out. @diecastpunk (FYI: the art use in the @diecastpunk logo isn’t mine. For speed, I ended up using some stock art from Adobe. New logo is in the works).

Then I took a long pause in my posts. I could have used my typical excuse of being too busy, but the truth was, it was less about that and more about lack of inspiration and motivation. Perhaps a little burnout, too.

Part of it was losing my brother. We weren’t as close the the last few years but I do feel deeply saddened by his loss, mostly when I take a moment to reflect on things — which happens quite often when pen is in hand.

After that, my mother had moved in with us for the foreseeable future. It's been a bit of a cultural shock for her and us, but we're working through it.

I’ve also shifted my time onto one of my other hobbies, collecting diecast cars. To give myself a shift in creative focus, I’ve been spending some time making photographs of them. This has helped give my brain the reset it needed. You can see them at @diecastpunk.

Coming back to the sketches: I want to get back to drawing for fun. So, you may see less participation in challenges and fewer commissions, and more drawings for creative outlet.

In early July, I managed to pull one together for the Forth, to celebrate U.S. Independence Day.

Inspired by @berts_bench and his amazing bots, I asked if I could make a drawing of one of his Coupling Bots. I hope that it’s worthy of comparison.

I ended up doing an art trade with him. He made a custom sculpture for me, in exchange for the original of this piece. I have to say, I ended up with the better end of the trade.

Finally, I was sad when I found out that Paul Reubens (aka Pee-wee Herman) passed away a few weeks ago. His character and his bike were iconic and always brought a smiles to me and my family. Here’s a little robot (on a rocket bike) tribute to him.