I created this work back in 2006 as a way of keeping my oil painting hobby going. At the time that I created this work I didn’t have the best studio to work in. We had purchased a house with a large basement that I was trying to use as a studio, but it was dark, moldy, and had a lot of dust and mildew in it. I did light up the place with some hanging lamps, but it still was definitely not the best place in the world to be doing oil painting since there was not much ventilation. There was a small garage door that I put fans nearby but this was still a horribly ventilated area. I fondly remember smelling the chemicals from the studio one floor up in the main living room several days after I created this work… that was something Tekla and Genesis didn’t care for too much. After that incident I went to trying to do works that require less fumes such as acrylic, color pencils, etc.
I believe that this painting was exhibited at the Columbia Art League the year that it was created.
Got off of the workouts a few days the last few days and didn’t watch carb intake either. Going to try to get back in to it going forwards… Anyways, since it’s Memorial Day, here’s a video from this memorial day and one from last. If I remember, I’ll try to take one every year to show progress because I DO PLAN TO GET TO MY BMI GOAL WEIGHT BY AGE 45!!!
Memorial Day 2013:
Memorial Day 2012:
Today is my birthday and I’ve decided that it’s time to restart the daily workouts after this weekend. I’ve had enough time to rest and recover after the surgery a couple of months ago. So.. here’s a new ‘before’ video…
Weigh in 2/8/2013: 277.5 lbs.
Here’s a couple of Birthday Self Portraits. Many other artists do annual self portraits on birthdays, and I started this little tradition last year, so figure going forward I might try it more often.
The self portraits got me thinking about things so I started some photo self portraits shortly after that…
The hernia issue happened October 29th, 2012. I overdid it on doing a Power 90 workout. Up til that point in time I was using 10 lb weights on each arm for most of the exercises. On that day I upped it to 20 lbs on each arm for the exercises, with was just too damn much… so I got hit with a hernia and had to have it repaired with a surgery. The doctor said that it was an odd type of hernia unlike one he’d seen before because it wasn’t a tear all the way through. Instead a very long piece of fatty tissue had essentially come out from the back area up through where it should not be and the overdoing it caused that to just strain all of it much worse than it should have been which caused the surgery to be needed. The surgery was in the early part of December and I was out of work a couple of weeks to recover from that. Then I went to work about a week and half and was on a scheduled Christmas vacation that was planned before the surgery thing came up… I kind of have not gotten in to the working out too much since then. I tried a time or two to do some of the workout videos, but the strain on the area where the surgery was for some of the kicks, crunches, etc. was just too much at the time. I am hoping that I’m now ready to re-start fresh now that I’ve had another few weeks of down time that I have not been doing much exercise.
Past videos and weigh ins on the weight loss journey up til this point in time:
I went up above 290 since the ‘rest’ I had to take to let the stab wound heal was days I gorged and ate extremely badly. That was a HUGE setback!… Hopefully junk like that won’t cause me to have setbacks again in the future.
Video of ‘The stab wound’ the monring after it happened. Sorry for the crappy video quality. I was using a low resolution webcam since it was the only video recording device I had available on that day. I accidentally stabbed myself with a steak knife while doing dishes. It was in the rack drying with the point up, but our sink is very small so I just moved wrong while washing a dish and accidentally the knife went right in. I bled a ton when it happened. Very scary situation since Tekla was not home when it happened. Very hard to hold the phone and call 911 when one of your arms has to hold a towel to stop blood and the other is bleeding like crazy.
May 28, 2012
Weight Chart prior to the videos:
Just as a reference for this old chart…
135 kg = 297.624 Lbs
130 kg = 286.601 Lbs
125 kg = 275.578 Lbs
The chart sort of outlines my ups and downs… The time when I was at the heaviest was a very dark time. It seemed like death was everywhere I looked.
I think I was in a pretty deep depression at the time due to many family deaths those few years and various economic problems, as well as a lot of stressful political bullshit at work… One of my coworkers quit/got fired in a big huge spat that happened after several months of building up to it. They fought her getting unemployment checks, and that all ended us all in a courthouse type of setting in Jefferson City… one of the most nervous days I’ve ever had… It was a big fiasco. I’m not sure if she ever got her unemployment or not, or if she sued in a real lawsuit or not like she was planning to do… but anyways, in some of it I had to get sworn testimony in there about how the Associate CFO, who was sort of the head of our area had pounded fists on a table in a meeting a few years prior to this in some heated contractual negotiations, etc. (she was trying to argue something about a hostile work environment, etc.)… A few months after that whole fiasco, I was told that there just wasn’t room in the budget for me any more, and I was ‘reassigned’ to another department.
There was quite a bit of hostility in myself after that retaliation for speaking up… which is exactly what I still think that was all about… add in that type of getting pushed around to depression, etc. and with my personality being to overeat when feeling down or nervous, and it was just a horrible situation all around… I was a walking time bomb and heart attack ready to hit. Luckily, my rationale side, and amazing better half kept me sane during these insane times – so I didn’t buy up big bulks of fertilizer to use as a weapon of mass destruction, and stuck with causing havock in video games like Grand Theft Auto III, Vice City, San Andreas, various old NES games, etc. Entropia Universe, the video game, was a part of the depression, etc. as you can read about in my other blog as the developers in that game love to make promises they can’t and just won’t keep… and the love to break expensive items and estates in game that you pay for with real cash after you pay for it, sometimes for months, or years (taming still isn’t back since version update 10, etc)… However, even despite all the bull shit with that game, it was something I had some control over in my life… sort of this little escape from reality that was always there since I started playing it in 2007. There was some documentary on Eminem I watched on youtube the other day that talks about how his alter ego existed vs his real name use because it was this sort of alter ego he went in to deal with reality sort of and have control over… the documentary said that lots of folks that grew up in some conditions similar to his had the same type of issues sometimes. I think my avatar in Entropia has sort of turned in to that type of alter identity for me. I guess, like Neverdie, I am my avatar.
(note – blog link in above paragraph is now on a private blog, so it won’t work… new blog for entropia can be found at https://entropiascams.wordpress.com/ – I had to start the new blog and make old one private (although backup does exist in xml file that you can find a link to over on the new blog if you use a password in one of the posts over there… hint: password is a simple name that most folks that have played entropia a long time should know… it starts with an M and ends in an O… 🙂 ))
(August 2015 update on the job issue… currently working as a Dual Rate First Responder/Security Officer at the Isle of Capri Casino in Boonville, Missouri. I’ve held this job less than a month so far. Before that I was only a Security Officer a few months, and prior to that worked as a Steward at the Casino. I have a few updates to resume still needed.)
I have grown to love my new job… so sometimes the God(s) do have a plan. I actually kick ass at work now since I’m 3000% hyper focused. Also, I don’t have the constant man hating bullshit that I had to experience daily in my previous department. At one time back then my Supervisor back then actually hung up the phone and outloud gabbed about how the problems they were having was all his fault because he was a man. It was highly funny/ironic/sad at the time because the only other guy in the area we worked in and I had to go to a human resource training session the day before that talked a lot about how sexual discrimination was so bad to have in the work place, etc. In that department, at least at one time there was a massive amount of sexual discrimination of men in the department was happening by the female supervisor and boss… All the while chitty chatty brown nosing gossipy bitch who sat in the cubicle next to mine got a raise. They never really did this discrimination stuff openly. What they’d do is this stupid crap of creating a new position that did the exact same job of who they wanted out… then after they purposefully got the job duties overlapped enough they’d assign the old worker they wanted out the bullshit jobs like manually closing out 50,000 or so accounts in a huge database where a pulldown menu had to be selected to close it, and this backlog of unclosed visits existed because the brown nosers never did their job but did a good enough job of hiding that fact until months later that they were never reprimanded… and then after assigning the crappy job they’d say that due to the overlapping of duties, there just is no need for the person that was there longest, etc. It’s all political bullshit…
However, luckily the new position I’m in now has much less of that type of stuff going on. For the first time in my life I work for a Department Manager that actually gives a damn about what her employees think! Just the other day I had an hour long meeting with supervisor and department manager just to discuss a handful of emails I’d sent where I explained some concerns I had about processes in the office that I didn’t agree with. At no other job I’ve ever had in the past has anyone ever taken the time to care that much… That’s an awesome feeling. It’s nice to have control over your own real life world a little, and have coworkers that actually care about what you have to say and think. Also, even though I do have to listen to some coworkers and their phone conversations nowadays, it’s nothing like the hateful bullcrap I used to have in my old department where the brown nosing bitches like to slam phones down after the call, call names to the other party after that, and then repeat back the entire conversation they just had voicing out loud with as much hatred as possible why the other party was wrong, on every paragraph in the conversation, EVERY time they take a call or make a call, either on the office phone or on their own private cell phone… That type of venomous poison is easily spread as it’s yelled out daily. Kinda sad to say it but it’s almost too bad that rattlesnake they found in the hallway outside of my old department didn’t find it’s way in the mail slots. Might have adjusted some attitudes in that area, but I doubt it would have done any good. Hopefully some of the self-loathing venom being spewed from that old office can recede from that area in the future as it really just causes endless cycles of negativity to draw itself in more and more daily…
Hopefully, as I continue down a healthy past in the near future, this control over my own life can only get better and better over time. We are now in the age of Aquarius. Enlightenment that was just beyond grasp is now within reach! 🙂 😉
Well, it’s the 29th day of the 1000 day challenge. Tomorrow is day 30, the time of no more taking it easy…
Tomorrow I will start the 2nd month’s challenge, which will be doing that second workout every day, at least 5 days a week – 6 if possible. I will keep doing the one workout a day in the morning, and then do this second workout after work. I expect to see some major calorie burning going on since I’m basically going to be doubling the number of calories burned daily through exercise. Because of that I probably will need to keep an eye on my blood sugar a lot more than I have up til now because going low on sugar can be a big problem for me since I’m diabetic. It’s never been an issue too much up til now since I never really went to my max on exercise, but doing two hard workouts daily might put me there…
Today I also tried doing a little writing at lunch. I’m going to try to make that in to a habit over time.. I’m using the habit tracker from the LDS that was linked to from one of the first posts about the 1000 day challenge. I’m using that tracker for stuff like that instead of the main ones because it lets me track a little easier than the regular one that tracks day by day… since it’s a cross off tracker. I’m also using that tracker to start tracking my times of going to the gas station and paying at the pump (instead of going in, and likely picking up some diet soda and snacks in the convenience store while at as I typically have done in the past – a bad habit I’m trying to start to break…)
I decided to go ahead and shoot the video for this ‘month’ tonight since it’s still afternoon so the light is good…
Plus I really just kind of want to see where I am visually with the video comparisons so that I know where I need to go as that sort of gives me inspiration about what level I need to aim for tomorrow and going forward. The videos take a little while to upload and link to, etc. and this blog posting takes a little while to put together so I’m probably going to not exercise tonight, or on other month ends when these types of videos get posted.
Today’s weigh in weight is 273.6 lbs. That’s 19 lbs down since 9/3/2012, and 22.9 lbs down since 6/24/2012. That puts my goal of ‘getting in to my BMI target range’ at somewhere between 96.6 lbs -133.6 lbs more to lose. It’d be nice if I reach that goal in the next year or so, but if it takes longer, it takes longer… That’s why I’m making this is a 1000 day challenge, not a 30 day challenge, not a 90 day challenge, but 1000 day challenge… In the past I’d have seen this sort of progress and just quit after that… not this time… going all the way to that 1000 days, exercising and doing other things to live a better life than I ever have in my entire life. It will be so nice to actually get to the ‘BMI’ weight that Doctors are always talking about… that weight where people can’t say you are obese any more… where you can look at them and say I got down to my goal weight, why aren’t you there yet?… 😉
Here’s the video I shot this afternoong, Day 29 of the 1000 Day Challenge (10/2/2012)
Here’s the video from Day zero of the 1000 day challenge (9/3/2012) – 292.6 lbs
Below are the videos and weight ins from before the 1000 day challenge when I tried to do the Power 90 but had to quit around day 60 because of an accidental stab wound… which caused me to have to ‘rest’ 2 weeks which really was not good on the weight loss thing, but that’s the past… I’m looking forward now… Just looking at the videos for comparison purposes… Even though the past is the past, it’s good to know where you came from so that you can tell where you are going…
8/21/2012 – 284.6 lbs
8/16/2012 – 285.3 lbs:
8/9/2012 – 281.8 lbs
8/1/2012 – 284.8 lbs
7/24/2012 – 286.2 lbs
7/17/2012 – 289.2 lbs:
7/14/2012 – 288.6 lbs
6/29/2012 I was 292.1 lbs
6/24/2012 I was 296.5 lbs
Memorial Day – May 28, 2012 –
I have to thank my amazing wife, Tekla, for being behind me all the way in this crazy 1000 day challenge thing. Sorry I wake you up so early darling but now you can start to see the progress…
This is only the beginning…
Much more to come. 😉 🙂 :p
(*note – if some of the videos don’t show yet, it’s probably because they are not done uploading yet… Currently uploading the oldest ones and they are only at 5% upload progress so far in youtube at the time of this posting… if you really have to see the vids, come back and look again tomorrow…*)
For a while in college I was fascinated by the idea of driving and the metaphor of how the car becomes a part of one’s self – an extension of the inner self in a variety of ways. Much of my art since that time has revolved around the idea of the journey, and seeing the landmarks on the road we see daily both in cars and outside of them. Roads that parallel highways and exit ramps and overpasses – tunnels to new places, and exits and entries on the highway of life fascinate me both visually, spiritually, and emotionally. We are all on journeys every day. Do we take the time to see what we are passing or just let it pass us by?
This drawing was created in Missouri Hall at Truman State University in Kirksville, MO. It was done for a drawing class. I was in to ‘role playing’ a little at the time. The figures in the background were playing Dungeons and Dragons, and I was halfway playing that too.. Needless to say the gaming group was not too happy that I was drawing while they were actively sitting around the table, lol. That was about my extent in role playing D&D. I never could get too much in to it. I hated that all of their books were so expensive and usually hard back while Palliadium books were usually 20 bucks or less and soft back, so much cheaper. That, and I just liked the whole playing in modern environment vs the old medieval ideas in D&D…
as far as the cracked mirror/split mirror idea goes, it’s something that’s a theme in some of my self portraits. It’s a visual metaphor that has a lot of different meaning.
This was an acrylic painting that I created when I was entering my ‘bottomless paintings’ phase. I was really interested in trying to figure out ways to create compositions that had no one right side up. I still get on that kick sometimes.
I almost skipped doing this drawing last night, but decided to stay up a little bit after doing the speed challenge in the last post to do it. I’m trying to work on color pencil drawing in the morning, and quick sketches like this along with the speed model stuff in the evening. Since I’m using ballpoint pen for these types of drawings, I really have zero excuses to not do one every day of the year! 🙂
I’m not too keen on the that big right eye and super dark area right below the chin in the neck, but that’s the sort of stuff that happens when you are doing a self portait. Actually, the eye kind of adds to that expression I think. I probably went in to too dark and harsh lines too quickly about 20 minutes in — easy to do in this type of drawing. Also, working near the edge of the paper is always a tricky thing to do, but an important thing to do.
Emotions play a big part in drawing. I had a pretty rough/stressful day at work, so I think that played in to this a little in the expressionism gestures in the line quality, etc.
I stopped it at 22 minutes instead of half an hour because I felt that if I kept going I was really going to overwork it way too much. Getting fine details in a quick sketch is always a tricky thing to do. How far is going to far. How much time is left. The clock starts to not matter much but I want to keep these below 30 minutes for now.
I ultimately want to do one quick sketch like this daily and then one longer work that takes a long time on the side after that. This is a transition in to that. Currently I’m working on some color pencil drawings for the longer drawing, but didn’t work on it yesterday or today. I want to make the quick sketches be done every single day regardless of how I feel or if I want to or don’t want to draw that day. If I keep them below half an hour, that’s a lot more possible and realistic then trying to do a masterpiece that takes hours daily, etc. Time management is an important and difficult thing to master.
“Halfway to 70” is the name of this one. It was a self portrait I did the other day on my birthday (yes, I’m 35 now). I’m not super happy with it, but considering it’s a self portrait done in about an about an hour or so it’s not half bad. Did it with ballpoint pen. Lots of artists do self portraits on their birthdays, and that’s something I have not done much of in the past, but figure it’s a descent time as any to start this annual project.
I quit when I did because I was making the shading too funky and could feel myself “overworking” it… Hard to stay with a fresh drawing feel and look if you go after too much realism in the shading/tones
I Really don’t think it “looks like” me totally. It’s hard to do self portraits since you are constantly moving as you draw, so your reference is always changing. I used china marker on the bathroom mirror to keep basic shape in the roughly right location through most of it. I’m going to probably do more freehand drawing things like this now and then to get my skills back in shape.
This weekend, if I find some time, I’m going to work on scanning more drawings from the ol’ sketchbooks and posting them in to the Artfolio Category here in the blog. There’s still lots of art that I don’t have online yet, lol! 🙂 😉
Eventually, if I get everything online, I’ll just keep making more and always scanning it in on the weekends or whatever free time I can find.
If nothing else, this at least helps get my name out there, and helps you folks see some stuff I’ve done in the past. All artwork any artists creates has something from his or her past involved in it in some way… It’s important to know where we’ve been so we know where we are, and where we are heading.
Hopefully this blog is helping you, as well as myself, discover, or rediscover where I’ve been… then you and I can put the pieces together to see where I stand now… and I can ultimately arrive at some really interesting and difficult questions about where I’m heading.