Saturday, November 20, 2010

Mission Call

Last night my son Ben has received his call to serve as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon). He will serve in the Guatemala City Guatemala mission, leaving February 23 2011 for three weeks in the Provo Utah Mission Training Center. He will then spend an additional two months in Guatemala at their local training center learning Spanish.

Ben, 19, put aside his studies at Brigham Young University for the two years of service. He is excited to go, although he says that Spanish was the one language he hoped he would not have to learn. High school Spanish classes were a struggle for him, even though he did well. If I could learn Chinese for my mission, he'll ace Spanish. He'll be awesome!

We had quite a time with friends and family last night, taking the envelope out of the mailbox so that Mom wouldn't know it had come (she saw right through us!) and "accidentally" misplacing it. When everyone had gathered around the dinner table we opened the letter from the Prophet. Mom and Sasha were the most excited; Ben tried to be matter-of-fact about it. Yeah, right!

Here is more information about what it is to be an LDS missionary. Here is more information about Guatemala.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

IlluxCon 2010

I have just finished enjoying IlluxCon 2010 in Altoona, Pennsylvania ( This was its third year and my third time to attend. An amazing array of high-power artists in the fantasy world. I was impressed by their talent, genuine humility, and interest in others. Definitely raised my perspective once again of what I can do with my art.

I started out by attending the marvelous exhibit at DC's Smithsonian exhibit, "Telling Stories: Norman Rockwell from the Collections of George Lucas and Steven Spielberg" ( Artwork to catch your breath, make you guffaw, and even bring a tear or two. What power he had to influence lives. Whether it was the real world or not, it was the world we wanted to have, and the world many of us would love to return to.

Then to Altoona, where I got to jog the hills and learn much. The demos were most impressive but I spent too much money--prints, books, the hat, the tee shirt. Belt-tightening time at the Yocum house for a while, now. But it was worth it.

Most impressive: The book, "The Legend of Steel Bashaw" by Petar Meseldzija ( Wow. Petar signed it at the IlluxCon showcase. The artwork is breathtaking. Once again, an impetus to upgrade my work several notches. Excellent!

Next: Illustration Master Class ( Many of the artists at IlluxCon also teach at IMC. A tough but marvelous time. Looking forward to it.