A full life always has beginnings and endings.
In 2001 I joined an organization of largely theme park and party caricaturists in hopes of sharpening my skills in cartoony portraits for editorial cartoons. At their annual week-long event the members drew and entertained each other and filled the walls of a hotel ballroom with hundreds of comic exaggerated portraits. I was overwhelmed and a bit shy about my meager abilities. The members didn’t seem to care. Each year I returned, excited to learn and practice and I soon met fascinating artists from all over the US and a few from Europe and Asia as well.
In 2005 I did a solo RTW and finished up in Malaga Spain at a “mini-con” of caricature artists from Europe and all over the world – for me a life event. That’s another story. Soon after retiring from my day job,I attended another, somewhat larger, midi-con in Tokyo. It was another unforgettably rich experience. By now I had met some of the great caricaturists of the world Most are still in touch. Travel had become a major enriching experience for me and I always carried my sketchbook.
As years passed there were things about the caricaturist organization and events I appreciated and a few things I did not. Since I did not volunteer to help fix the issues, I remained a loyal and quiet participant. It’s always easy to complain. As many of my friends began to stop attending, moving on with their lives, the events became less interesting to me. So this year, I decided to say “goodbye.”
Creatively, there’s still a world of wonderful faces still to draw, cartoons to create, and illustration gigs to keep me very happy and busy. Teaching continues (and for SAM too) to be rewarding and challenging.
Best to finish here before my eyes start to leak...