Monday, August 17, 2009

Bicycle Commuting

I try to ride my bicycle into work every day that I can. This usually averages out to 3 days per week. I started doing this in 2006 and have continued each year since then. My riding typically starts in April and ends around beginning of November. My commute is only 7 miles each way and I can make this trip in under 30 minutes. It is a great way to get in exercise each day. It only takes ten minutes more each way to ride versus the car. The car is used if there is rain or if I have to run an errand that is out of the way. Last years I logged about 1,300 commuting miles on my bike which was a record for me.

Riding a bicycle is a wonderful way to slow down and notice everything around. Right now it is very warm outside and I feel the heat off of the road. I also feel the cool of the big stands of trees or woods when passing by too. A tree is an incredible air conditioner and I would not notice it each hot summer day by riding in my air conditioned car. Today I heard strange bird sounds and looked up at the tree tops. Sitting on top of a tree was a peregrine falcon. I stopped just to look at it and then it flew away. On my ride home, I often will smell many different dinners cooking from homes along the route home.

These are a few benefits of the enjoyments of riding a bicycle to work each day. It does help to have one less car on the road and I hope more people can enjoy this experience too. Not to save the planet or save gas, but just for the simple fun of it.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Back to Pencil Drawing

This is a pencil drawing of the late George Harrison that I started last year which I worked on during lunch times at work. I had in my desk drawer and pulled it out occasionally. It was not coming out like I hoped so I put it away. Two weeks ago I saw it and decided to finish it. I have learned more about seeing value shapes but I still have much more to learn. I recently came across an artist named JD Hillberry. I really like the detail that he captures in pencil and charcoal. I ordered his book and pencil set. I hope to improve the realism in my drawings. It will take lots of practice, but I am enjoying it. I just need to get over the resistance to just sitting down and drawing.