Tag Archive | Dogs

Let Bruce Hilvitz Immortalize Your Pets in Portrait

I did a short interview with Bruce Hilvitz, who is a very talented cartoonist, who is in the process of getting a new comic strip syndicated and also captures your pet’s essence through his digital pet portraits. I wanted to do a follow up with more examples of his work. Here is Reggie J. Rabbit:

Bruce captured Reggie's essence.

Bruce captured Reggie’s essence.

I really love the fine detail of this cat:

cat by bruce

and someone’s Canine kid:

caninet by bruce

And here is the artist himself:

Bruce Hilvitz is a very talented artist.

Bruce Hilvitz is a very talented artist.

If you are interested in immortalizing your pet go to

www.flatwurks.com

Bruce asks that you send him a high resolution photo. Tell Bruce “Visions Alchemy sent me.”

Artist Bruce Hilvitz immortalizes Reggie J Rabbit in Portrait

Reggie hanging out

This is the photo we sent Bruce. Look below to see Bruce’s work.

I have written about our Warrior Bunny, Reggie. He is funny, mischievous a little pushy at times but we love his spirit. Almost a month ago, we had a scare. Reggie came down with something. He stopped eating, and started losing weight. He became lethargic. So we took him to his vet, Dr. Riddle. He got an injection of antibiotics and an additional 7 day supply of antibiotics to take home. It took almost 7 days before we saw that he was making a recovery but he is doing awesome now and from this experience he has become more affectionate and sweet. He will come up to me and ask me to pet him. if he is in his little hiding place under his chair and I need to see him,  I call him and he comes out so I can pet him. This experience brought us closer together. I realized then I wanted to get a portrait done of him. I have never been able to paint or draw rabbits but when my husband’s Friend, Bruce Hilvitz, who is a very talented artist donated a pet portrait for the yearly Humane Society of the North Bay’s Barkitecture,  I asked Bruce to make a portrait of Reggie. It was an easy process. We sent Bruce a hi-resolution photo of Reggie and he sent us back a digital file of Reggie within the week. It was really fast. He really captured Reggie’s essence. As I am looking at Reggie’s portrait, these questions about Bruce’s art started flooded in my mind.  How did he develop his style? Does he believe he has to suffer for his art? So I decided to ask the artist himself. Here is a short interview I did with Bruce:

Did you take formal art classes?

Bruce: One month in art school was all I could muster. Back in those days, where I was, there wasn’t any respect for cartooning in art school.  Although, I did grow up within an arts community, via my Mother, so way before High school, I had experience in virtually all disciplines of art

What was the defining moment when you realized you wanted to pursue your art as a career?

Bruce: I can’t recall one, per se…I’ve always drawn, played with paints, clay, whatever was handy at the moment.  I’ve always relied on visuals, be it art, toys, cars, buildings…anything that I enjoyed looking at.

How do you describe your art?

Bruce: My art and career has been based on comic art mostly.  Something I’ve been drawn to my whole life (no pun intended).  It can run the gamut since I’ve had to learn to wear many “hats” in order to make a living … comics don’t pay very well, and they are time consuming. Illustrations a bit better, general graphic design, hourly, is the best.  Special projects, here and there are also nice when there’s that opportunity…like book design, and editing, limited edition print production. 

What artists influenced you when you were developing your style?

Bruce: Early on I was weened on MAD Magazine, of course…guys like Basil Wolverton, Jack Davis, Wil Elder, Harvey Kurtzman. I had a very short lived love affair with super hero stuff…I appreciate that stuff more now, than I did then…but my true love came to light when I first laid eyes on a Robert Crumb comic, and it finally struck me with the thought that ANYTHING is possible. And so it is.

How would you describe the medium you work in?

Bruce: These days it all seems to be based on digital technology.  I sometimes start with a regular ‘ol drawing that I scan then work out color or details in a vector based program, usually Flash or Illustrator. I don’t draw “on paper” as much as I really should, digital art doesn’t have the tactual satisfaction that paper does…no originals to really drool over. You can see who has “chops” when you see an original drawing on stiff white bristol board.

Do you agree you have to suffer for your art?

Bruce: No, but it helps. Truthfully it’s a tough profession, if you are not willing to sacrifice common things in life, then you better think of something else to do.

When did you decide to start doing pet portraits?

Bruce: I started this past holiday season…I live in a neighborhood with many, many dogs, I figured someone might be interested…just another “hat” to wear.

Do you have any animal companions?

Bruce: The best dog on earth…a reformed runaway name Aristotle. A black Pekingese, only an Anti-Pekingese…he doesn’t bark, maybe twice a year, if that…he does sneeze, and fart a lot though…I can’t blame him, he’s in the neighborhood of 14 (years).

This Is Bruce's pride and Joy, Aristotle.

This Is Bruce’s pride and Joy, Aristotle.

Any advice for aspiring artists?

Bruce: Don’t do it!!! no…just learn, work hard, be honest with yourself…  The best advice I try to follow, not sure who said it, in the lines of… “Do art as if your parents are dead.”

Can you expand on that philosophy- “Do art as if your parents are dead.”

My interpretation is ‘don’t be afraid of what other people think…just do it.’ Criticism, and especially self-criticism, is the death nell of art. Even though it’s hard to avoid, or listen to.

For anyone interested in having you create a portrait for their pets how can they contact you?

Bruce: Easy as going to my site…

www.flatwurks.com

Bruce captured Reggie's essence.

Bruce captured Reggie’s essence.

There is Abundance Everywhere

This was sent to me from my new friend, Donna Malus, creator of the Bowed Psaltery website, Psalterystrings.com This website, I am starting to see as my extended family. We all share a love of this very wonderful, magical Ethereal sounding stringed instrument. I love the picture of the dog and cat celebrating brother-sisterhood for all on this day of Gratitude. I have been doing group meditation with my guides and friends who want to continue to create in our physical world all the abundance, joy, love and beauty everywhere on the planet. The more experiences I have of Abundance showing up in my life when I focus on those experiences-I am shown that when we all do that, the world changes too. We can change the world by focusing on the abundance that is already here. When our virtual group comes together and we combine our mind-focus on the love, peace, compassion, generosity, abundance, balance, wholeness that is here in our lives-everywhere present in the world right now, we  can rest assured we will see an example of the changes we are all creating. When we see it, we can say thank you for the “beauty” I am seeing when I look at my Four-legged kids, or when we see the mother who is lovingly holding her child, we can say, I am grateful seeing more of the love in the world and then we will see more of that. When I say Thank you for the deep love that my husband and I share; thank you our dear friends who are supportive, or the courteous driver that allowed me to safely merge into the lane. When we acknowledge the experiences, more comes to us. We start stretching our visualization skills and we will see these amazing things materialize. Start seeing the beauty and abundance in your life, it comes to you. Immerse yourself in the qualities of love, gratitude, joy without filters, they come to you. Then take it a step further-start visualizing for another-love and joy in their lives and see what happens. Abraham says that if we can visualize something for at least 27 seconds or more the changes start coming. We are sending out “rockets of desire”. Can you imagine that if a group of your friends came together and did this exercise, what wonderful things you could create for yourselves and others? I see that now. Today right now I am visualizing the world wrapped in love, joy and gratitude today.

Life is to be enjoyed

I have not written since a week before Mother’s Day. There is so much activity going on, that I am having so much fun, that I haven’t stopped time to write. But here I am now. I wanted to let you know what is going on. First of all, for Mother’s Day, David gave me an IPad! I had been wanting one for a while. I have been using my Ipod touch to record songs, but it is over 3 years old and couldn’t get the great software out there and the screen is a little too small for me to use the controls on the interface. So now the screen is so big and I have two great programs on my IPad-Studio MiniXL an 8 track recording studio and a program to write the chords and words for writing my songs. It has a scrolling device so I don’t have to carry my heavy songbook with me when I perform. I am also using my IPad for editing videos with the IMovie AP. it is so easy to use. The IPad is truly an amazing lifestyle tool.

I also got an IPhone and am now replacing my Sony Handicam. The quality is so much better. There are also accessories so you can attach extra mics and a tripod. I am streamlining my equipment so I only have to take my IPhone and a tripod-Amazing.

The trip to Mendocino was very fruitful. I had a wonderful time singing at the Mendocino Center. There was a lady who is a fellow animal activist and said that when we come up we can use her guest apartment. And I will be going up to Mendocino on a semi-regular basis. I am producing a new show up there called “The Paw Stops Here in Mendocino”. I shot my first show in May. I interviewed Kevin Williams who is a docent at Point Cabrillo Lighthouse along with his dog Dillon. Dillon is a very cute Boucion mix and has a lot of charisma. He even has a blog talking about life at Point Cabrillo and to get the word out about the proposed closure of the list of parks in California, for which Point Cabrillo is on the list. Kevin talked about what we can do so that doesn’t happen.  We can change this. It would be a shame to not have access to these beautiful places. Show your voice and support.

I also interviewed Christine Olson Day who is the manager and owner of Gallery Bookshop in Mendocino. For 18 years, they had a store cat named Colette. She talks about the way Colette touched so many lives. It is so touching. Last but certainly not least. I interviewed the manager of the Surf Motel. This motel located on the main street of Ft. Bragg has been around for over 60 years. It is pet friendly. The grounds are absolutely beautiful. Tune in when the show airs. I am also going to put it on my YouTube channel. I will send the link when I finished editing it.

I am also getting ready to do another concert for Any Dog Rescue. I love doing my animal activist work through song. It is such a gift for me to give back in this way. I feel I am living the life I have always created in my mind. I am using my gifts as a singer, painter, writer, peaceful animal activist. I wake up with joy and excitement for the new day. who knows what wonderful experiences will come to me today.

It can happen to you too. Breathe in and out. Focus on your joy; focus on things that make you happy. Focus on things that fill you with Gratitude and Grace. It is these very things that will come into your life the more you think about them. It raises your vibration, lowers your stress. When life throws you a curve. Recognize that your experience what you think about and your attitude about it. Yes, life is to be embraced, experienced in the present and enjoyed!

Moms are pet parents too!

This little boy-cat and I have a special connection.

We pet parents know that our babies love us, how they shower us with affection with gentle nuzzling, leg rubbings, purring or patting us on the cheek. it is this love that can’t fully be described, you have to experience it. It is because of our love for them that they feel safe showing their love to us. If I had human kids, I wouldn’t love them more. So when I read the ASPCA email with the title “Mothers are pet parents too”, My thought was It’s about time!

I know many, many families that are made up of human and non-humans. I can see the love they shower on all their kids, whatever form they are in. Is that to say we don’t recognize our cats, dogs or rabbits as the beings they are? No, but we give them the same love, respect and affection we would for our other human family members.  I am so glad that the consciousness is growing, Pet-Moms are being recognized. I am asking my boy-cat, Oski to respect my boundaries more and respond quicker for a Mother’s day gift. I can feel he is pondering over that one. I believe he will agree. He does his best to please us. he is a loving cat.

We have 5 wonderful 4-legged kids, but Oski (shown at the left) and I have a special bond. He just turned 10 and as he has matured, he listens and responds to my requests. He will now sit and look at me when he wants a snack. He uses sign language to let me know when he wants to be on my lap. He also gives hi-fives and shakes hands. He will use his feline cadence to carry on a conversation and tell me about his day. Because I know that animals do listen and a cat learns a vocabulary of 50 words, I know he is getting the jest of my conversation. He still likes to be carried and cradled like a baby and he still loves the baby talk. When he wants to show affection he will pat me on the cheek with his paw.I remember one day I was crying at a sad movie. He was in my lap. He turned to me, looked at me intently and then put his paw on my cheek. This is a demonstration of love. It isn’t an instinctual response to some stimulus.

For all you pet parents out there, why don’t you share some of the ways your 4-legged kids show you love and this year, for your friends who have four-legged, furry, feathered or gilled, send them a Mother’s day card. We will appreciate it!

The Realization of life

I can create possibilities into Realities.

I took this title from a song I wrote. The name of the song is “The Realization-this song will be be going on my next CD. This is the 3rd step of what we “New Thinkers” call Affirmative Prayer. Actually I believe it is technically called “Recognition”. This is the step you are declaring that what you want in your mind is already here. When you name it and claim it-it is yours. I was telling a friend the other day that I feel as If I walked through the door of good fortune and many, many things are coming into my life. I have a wonderful job making a good income and working in a wonderful location-my home. In this job I utilize all my talents in fulfilling ways. I work for people who I respect who respect me. This is a dream job. I am also pursuing my interests as a singer, painter, writer, animal activist, photographer and videographer and getting paid. I have a loving marriage with a man who is fun to be with-has a good outlook in the world; he loves and respects animals as much as I do. He still knows how to make me laugh and can make me feel shy as if we were first dating (although we have been together almost 13 years. We have a close-knit multi-species family. Besides humans, cats and rabbits living in our house we have many plant babies. As I have gotten more tuned in, my plant babies will call me when it is time to water them.

I am not writing this with an intention to brag but to declare that when we realize that all good things deserve to come to us, that is what we receive. In Science of Mind, Reality means, your personal truth. So if I believe I can make money doing things that I love-I do. If I believe I deserve to be loved by a loving, sweet, sexy man with a generous heart, then he shows up (he did 34 years in high school and then reappeared in December 1999-I married him in 2001). If I can believe I can meet interesting people for my TV show, I do. If I believe that when ever I have a challenge I will be led to a solution-it comes in at the perfect time.  This Reality is not only for the “chosen few” it is for anyone who is willing to go out of their comfort zone and open up to the possibility that you truly can create a life you enjoy. This consciousness came in for me in little bits and pieces at first, then as I got comfortable recieving, more and more things came in a consistent flow. Yes I have so much to be grateful for, I Realize this, accept this and claim it. And so it is!

Come one, Come all to my concert

I finally got the PSA (Public Service Announcement) to play on my station, VCAT, Channel 27. I just wanted to share with you all. It is also on YouTube right now. Here it is without any further delay:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-4P2ZEdFMMo

CD Cover for Let Their Voice Be Heard