Art Festival weekend

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Me (in the tan hat) with some of my family.

Been spending the weekend at the Coconut Grove Arts Festival and the St. Stephen’s Art Show, which is right next door. It’s a yearly event each February. The whole town comes out, then some. There’s so much art, people watching, food and drinking.

It starts out with breakfast at a gallery and then we all start toward the festivals, it’s two festivals right next to each other. Friends and family sort of separate, then at the festival we may meet up, some people may drop out, others may add themselves to the group. It’s  a fun weekend. It runs Saturday, Sunday and Monday, which is President’s Day.

 

On the whole, I’d like to be cartooning in Hoboken!

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Lower Manhattan seen from the Hoboken, NJ waterfront.

I completed a bunch of 10 With Tom interviews with new cartoonists who I admire. They were all gracious and humble. Very nice people. The interviews will be published in the Huffington Post soon and then I’ll link to them here in the Tomversation blog.

I also am ready to start publishing my comic panel, Tomversation, daily. I’m just waiting for the platform to be completed where I’ll publish on that platform along with Facebook.

I’m excited to start doing this daily – drawing comics and writing about them and other art-related things. It’s a nice way to spend the day.

I want to travel more in 2017, I renewed my passport last week. I’m home in Miami now, I do miss New York but not in this snow and cold, I prefer Spring, Summer and Fall up north. I think a lot about Hoboken. I’m imagining being high in a condo, overlooking the Hudson River and New York City, venturing out to a small coffee shop or cafe for lunch, cartooning in between. There is something that draws me to Hoboken. I don’t know what it is.

The disappearing riverboat

This is an amazing shot. It was so foggy in New Oreans the other day, you could barely see your hand in front of your face. I’ve never seen fog like that before. I video’s this. Watch as the Creole Queen riverboat disappears as it heads out into the fog on the Mississippi River. Watch till the end. Amazing.

Holiday time in Union Square

It’s not the holidays without a visit to Union Square in NYC. It’s one of my favorite places in the city – during any season. My favorite thing in the summer is a Mr. Softee truck on almost every corner surrounding the square. I’ve counted as many as seven trucks at one time.

But during October and November, Union Square comes alive. It starts in October with pumpkins and fall colors popping up all over. And in November, it turns red with all the Christmas stuff.

There is always a green market and in November, that is joined by a holiday craft bazaar, with the best hot chocolate. Mix that with chess players, Hare Krishnas, a fortune teller or two, art on the sidewalks and some odd protest or two and it’s all a perfect mix.

Budding artists update

Well, lo and behold,, I received an email from the teacher in the previous story about the students at MOMA, he wanted to thank me for the story. I had wondered how he found it since his name wasn’t published in the story and he told me that someone at MOMA saw the story and sent it to him.

His name is Sebastian Alappat and he told me this is a special program called SPARK. “My goal as the founder of SPARK is to cultivate and foster that creative fire in kids, if they are artists or not. By introducing the elements to them, you never know what they might be inspired to do. The Museum of Art immersion was two days, two museums and the results were amazing,” he said.

You can learn more about SPARK at www.thespark.nyc .

My Christmas tree is up already!

15027409_10206308201537552_7656264727295669275_nI put the Christmas tree up yesterday. I know it’s mid-November, but I’m leaving town for a bit and wanted it to be up and ready when I return in December. It’s sort of like early voting, takes the pressure off!

I love the Spidey ornament. I think I won this in this dumb game we play every year. People buy an ornament, wrap it and place it on the table, then after drawing straws or something, people choose the wrapped ornament that they would like. People can then steal from them when it’s there turn and therein lies the rub. I think the ornaments should stay wrapped, so you are gambling when you choose the ornament from someone, it’s like door number 1, 2 or 3. But we unwrap the ornament when we choose it and everyone then knows what it is, so there is a lot of stealing going on. It sort of makes it best to be the last one chosen since you then have access to any ornament you would like simply by stealing it.

I usually get something good. One year I got an Elvis ornament, another year a nice Snoopy ornament and I think last year it was a small record player.

Calling Tommy

My neighbors’ dog’s name is Tommy, so when they call him, I sometimes think they are calling me, which reminds me of a neighbor we had years ago. Their dog’s name was Richard and every time they would go out and call, “Richard! Richard!” It sounded so funny.

My cousin’s name is Tommy, too, but for some reason, whenever someone calls one of us, we know which one they are referring to. I’m not sure why, maybe it’s the tone of their voice. When we were young, they would call me Big Tommy and him Little Tommy. That stopped, not sure when. Both of us have grandfathers and uncles on different sides of the family that are named Tom or Tommy. On my mother’s side, her brother was Tommy, her father Tom and me Thomas. I never liked Thomas, not sure why. When the others passed away, I became Tom or Tommy.

I can tell when people met me by what they call me. I know which friends introduced us and how long ago it was by what I’m called. One friend used to call me Thomas, and to this day, when someone calls me Thomas, outside the family, I know I was introduced to them by Franco, a friend, so many years ago.

Now I’m Tomversation. 🙂