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illustration: white oak

November 12, 2016

white_oak_tree_leaf_by_al_lau

White Oak hardwood trees grow throughout the central and east part of North America, ranging from Texas up to Maine, also reaching up to Canada. They are described as white oak due to their bark being white-ish, in comparison to their oak cousins. Its acorn nuts provide an important food source for deer, squirrels, blue jays and turkey. A distinct identifier of the white oak is its leaf shape which has seven to nine rounded lobes.

drawing: go cubs go!

November 4, 2016

the_cubs_batter_by_al_lau

This was the best World Series as far as entertainment and the history of the two teams involved. Both have not won a Series in a very long time. And both teams were clearly at the top of their game.

It was an uphill battle for The Cubs. Having lost twice at home at Wrigley Field and deflating hopes of their fans, The Cubs had to comeback by winning two games just to even the series out, in Cleveland. They prevailed and it went sevens games for the decider.

The seventh game wasn’t without its drama. The Cubs had a nice lead, but then in the eighth inning, the Indians evened the score 6-6, and then a rain delay came. Perhaps, this gave The Cubs time to collect themselves because they punctuated their determination by scoring two more points in the 10th and final inning.

The 108-year-old curse for the Chicago team was finally broken! Congratulations to The Cubs!

drawing: the oak tree

October 22, 2016

oak_tree_600yr_by_al_lau

Long before Henry the VIII was the King of England and long before Leonardo da Vinci painted his famous painting Mona Lisa, an oak tree began its life, 600-years ago. Generations of American Indians enjoyed the shade underneath its long branches. Even George Washington was here, during the revolutionary war.

Sadly, now, the old oak tree is dying. It is showing its age. There are steel props and support wires applied by caring people, desperately holding up its heavy branches.

The New Jersey town is understandably distraught. It is like a family member is going away and so is piece of history.

I visit the gentle giant to witness its grandeur which still stands next to a church in Basking Ridge, NJ. I am so glad I did. In own my way, I honor the amazing tree by doing a little sketch.

drawing: tiny house

October 1, 2016

tiny_house_by_al_lau

Do you like to travel to different cities and yet feel at home?  Don’t want to be stuck in mortgage debt for rest of your life? Well, Tiny Houses are becoming a popular life choice. You can customize it to fit your needs. All for only $20K to $50K!

Whoa. I’m starting to sound like a commercial announcer. I’m not, I’m just an artist.

My drawing, here, is a traditional style tiny house, complete with vinyl siding, tin roof and plenty of windows for lots of natural sunlight.

The big question is:
Can you live in 200 square feet of space?

drawing: star trek

September 9, 2016

star_trek_enterprise_by_al_lau

Dear fellow trekkies and adventurers of all kinds.

I can’t let this week beam by me without doing a little drawing in honor of the Star Trek universe. The tv show (namely, the original series, The Next Generation and Voyager), and the movies have inspired my imagination for so many years.

My sketch shows the classic Enterprise traveling at warp factor 9.

Happy 50th Anniversary, Star Trek!

sketch: track & field

August 21, 2016

track_and_field_by_al_lau

Sadly, the Rio Olympics is coming to an end this weekend, but that doesn’t mean the fun should end. Keep active and set goals for yourself, your kids and your family, while it’s still nice outside, in sports, or whatever makes you feel alive.

As for me, I’m quite not ready to stop drawing Olympic sports stuff. Today, I give you a runner competing in Track & Field. Track running began as a stadium race in 776 BC. This competition was the only athletic event in early Olympics. The marathon wasn’t introduced into the Olympics until 1896, a long distance run from Marathon to the Olympic stadium in Athens.

Rio proved itself to be an excellent host city for the Olympics. I still can’t believe Brazil is the first South American country to have the Olympics. Here’s hoping for more cities, south of the equator, to host.

Next stop: Tokyo, Japan!

sketch: diving

August 17, 2016

diving_twist_woman_by_al_lau

Diving at the Rio Olympics provided plenty of drama, not only between the competitors, but also with some unforseeable affects. Early on, the pool turned deep green as a pond, questioning the safety of those who swim in it. And periodically, heavy winds pushed divers off course, causing some to hit the diving board.

Competitive diving began as early as the 18th century, between Germany and Sweden. The sport was first introduced in the Olympics in 1904.

My drawing is of a diver, executing a twist, just after take off from the platform (about 10 meters above the pool surface).

Which diver were you rooting for to win gold?

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