Tasty Treats

"Carnitas Taco Dinner" Cedar Park, 2017
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/4, 1/75 sec, ISO3200
“Carnitas Taco Dinner” Cedar Park, 2017

こんばんは。Tonight I present to you two photos of some tasty treats. The first is of our dinner of carnitas tacos. One of my sons requested it, and I provided my recipe to my wife who prepared it. I ate maybe 4 tacos and was stuffed! When we eat out at Mexican restaurants, I often get carnitas and offer some to my kids. But they never really like it until lately. Now they love carnitas! 😀

Later in the evening, we met some friends at Texas Saké Company and enjoyed a saké tasting and tour of the brewery. It was a lot of fun, and educational too! If you are in Austin, stop by for a drink! 🍶

"Sake Flight" Austin, 2017
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/2, 1/75 sec, ISO6400
“Sake Flight” Austin, 2017

Pens with My Traveler’s Notebook

"Kakuno and Traveler's Notebook" Cedar Park, 2017
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/4, 1/40 sec, ISO3200
“Kakuno and Traveler’s Notebook” Cedar Park, 2017

Hi all! Here’s a quick post about how I carry my two preferred pens on my passport-size Traveler’s Notebook. There are actually loop attachments for sale to which you can attach a pen, but I read that most of those mark up the cover of the notebook, so I decided to see if there was another option. Plus I’m cheap and didn’t want to spend money! 😅

"Kakuno and Clips" Cedar Park, 2017
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/4, 1/50 sec, ISO3200
“Kakuno and Clips” Cedar Park, 2017

I already had a bunch of these cool little binder clips on my notebook, and I positioned them so that the handles form little guides for the pen. This combined with the elastic band keep the Pilot Kakuno snug and secure. I also positioned a third clip (the pink one) so that the pen cap rests on it, and it centers the pen so that the top or bottom don’t stick out.

"Notebook and Pens" Cedar Park, 2017
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/2.8, 1/100 sec, ISO2000
“Notebook and Pens” Cedar Park, 2017

I think the Pilot Kakuno is a good choice to use with the passport-sized Traveler’s Notebook because it has a cap (no accidental pushes on a push-button pen) and it’s just a couple millimeters shorter than the notebook. The perfect size!

"Pens and Traveler's Notebook" Cedar Park, 2017
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/4, 1/75 sec, ISO3200
“Pens and Traveler’s Notebook” Cedar Park, 2017

If I want to, there’s also room to put my other favorite pen, the LAMY Safari, right on the front. It’s a pretty simple system, but I like it, and it’s free!

I really like this set-up and think I’ll be using it for a long, long time. 😌

My Typical Day

"Pork Donburi" Cedar Park 2017
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/4, 1/80 sec, ISO3200
“Pork Donburi” Cedar Park 2017

Dinner, dishes, and drawing. That’s a typical evening for me lately. I am enjoying life!

The pork donburi with shishito peppers and eggs was delicious, and then while doing the dishes, I enjoyed the pretty clouds as they floated by. 🌥

"View from the Sink" Cedar Park, 2017
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/5.6, 1/600 sec, ISO200
“View from the Sink” Cedar Park, 2017

Tonight’s drawing is actually a copy of a previous drawing, which I scanned, printed, and then applied ink with a brush. It was difficult to control (the brush was too long and soft) but fun to try something new. I think I prefer the line portraits right now.

"Inkling" Cedar Park, 2017
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/5.6, 1/70 sec, ISO3200
“Inkling” Cedar Park, 2017

I hope you had a good Thursday!


Memory Box

"Round" Cedar Park, 2017
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/3.2, 1/100 sec, ISO2500
“Round” Cedar Park, 2017

こんばんは。How’s it going?

The other day I was searching for a palette knife for my son, and I checked an old wicker storage chest that I’ve had for as long as I can remember. I keep a lot of old things in there, including some art supplies. I didn’t find the palette knife in there, but I did get lost for a half hour looking through the contents of the chest.

I have used this chest to keep a bunch of personal “memorabilia” safe for so many years. It holds my high school diploma, achievement awards, old photos, maps, plane and train tickets, old baseball and concert tickets, and letters.

The letters were what interested me most, specifically letters from a pen pal that I had in high school. For maybe a year, I exchanged letters with another high school student who lived in Paris. It was so much fun to receive letters from Sophie! I remember every day wondering if I’d get a nice surprise in the mailbox. And I would dream of someday traveling to Paris to meet my pen pal.

I eventually did travel to Paris, but by that time, I was no longer in contact with my pen pal. I wonder what kind of life she is living now… I think I’d rather not know, but be happy keeping it a mystery.

Anyways, tonight’s photo is of a drawing I worked on. I tried to shorten the face but I think it may be too round? I actually like the shape, though. I also tried to blacken the hair using pencil, and I thought that it wouldn’t come out looking nice, but I’d give it a go anyways just to know for sure. やっぱり。。。I don’t think I’ll do that again.  ☺️ But I am glad I found out.

I hope you had a nice Wednesday!


Evening Routine

"Three Amigos" Cedar Park, 2017
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/2.5, 1/125 sec, ISO5000
“Three Amigos” Cedar Park, 2017

こんばんは。How’s it going?

I’ve settled into a nice evening routine, which I am enjoying quite a bit. It’s funny, but the things I used to think of as “chores” are now part of a routine that I don’t give too much thought to, and they don’t really cause any stress.

Each night I will clean the cat litter box, which only takes a minute, but I would visualize how awful a job it is and fill my mind with negative thoughts like, “why am I the one who has to do this?”. 🐱 But these days, I just do it and my mind is thinking about things other than the cat poop. Does that make sense? It’s like I am on auto-pilot and since I don’t think about the chore that I am doing, it doesn’t affect my frame of mind negatively. My body might be scooping poop, but my mind is enjoying talking with my family, thinking about drawing, or listening to the baseball game that’s on the tv in the living room.

Another task that I do almost every night is washing the dishes. This is less of an “auto-pilot activity”, but I look at it as an opportunity to chat with the family in a relaxed environment (just after dinner, everyone is usually in a good mood). Or, if everyone has left the kitchen area, I can catch up on some podcasts. So, it’s a productive time of my day.

The same goes for brushing my teeth in the evening. I admit I used to often skip the nighttime brushing 😇. But for the past couple years this important task also has become an “auto-pilot activity” and I will listen to a podcast while I do it.

So those are my “tasks” that I do every evening. I also have a few other routines that are on the fun side, but I’ll save that for another blog post.

Tonight’s photo at the top of this post is of my three watches that I like to wear. My Seiko SKX007 (on the right) is what I wear every day, my Timex weekender is a watch I sometimes wear to bed. It’s so light and the band is so soft that I don’t even realize I am wearing it. But I find the audible ticking noise to be relaxing and helps me sleep. The watch in the center is my Seiko 5 SNK809, which I don’t wear as often, but once in a while, I will throw it on. What’s nice about the automatic watches like the Seikos I own is that they don’t use batteries. Just a few shakes to get them going and then they will power up by just regular body movement. I love that!

Lastly, the photo below is my latest practice sketch. I tried drawing it without referencing the proportions video that I needed to watch for the previous sketch. I guess it turned out OK, but I’m still not very happy with it. It’s a little “off”. Still, it’s good to practice.

"Practice Sketch" Cedar Park, 2017
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/3.2, 1/100 sec, ISO2500
“Practice Sketch” Cedar Park, 2017

I hope you had a nice Tuesday!


A Monday

"August 7 Practice" Cedar Park, 2017
“August 7 Practice” Cedar Park, 2017

こんばんは。How’s it going? Did you survive another Monday? 😀

I don’t have much to say tonight. Actually, I do want to write about my frustrations with setting up our Windows network, but I’ll save that for another time. I’m pretty tired and I want to read before I fall asleep.

But I did want to share another drawing I did a few minutes ago. I think I should keep drawing faces from straight on for a while so I can memorize the proportions I like. I like tonight’s drawing, but it might be a little long? I don’t know. Anyways, I am learning to erase quickly instead of trying to draw more to fix mistakes. And I am getting better at controlling the pencil. Sounds funny to say that, but I can feel that I am slowly gaining a little more skill. ☺️

Ok, enough for tonight. See you tomorrow!