During my entire childhood, I was I guess you can say a "military brat." To this day I still don't know what that means, but I guess it is what it is. My dad was a Master Sargent who served in the Army. He also fought in Operation Desert Storm in the early 90s (The battle that George Bush's dad through us in before the war that his son has created now.) Luckily, it didn't last long.
In 1994, my dad was given orders to be stationed on the island of Oahu Hawaii. To many people, this would seem like a dream come true just from the fact that you get to live in Hawaii, but it wasn't like that for me when I first heard the news just because of the fact that:
1. I had to move away from all of my friends and the entire United States at that.
2.When I first heard the news (as a 10 years old), the first thing I thought was
and the fact that we would probably have to live in Straw huts
But when we actually got there it wasn't anything like Gilligan's Island....it was more like this
And to think, I got to spend a whole 3 years in this kind of an environment in the 90s all because the Army told us to.
Hawaii has many Islands
this is the island we were sent to
which would also be the place that I got my first "real" feel of artistic talent.
This is my class picture 1994-95 and me in the ridiculously cross colored shirt. you'll notice that 70% of the population of Hawaii had an Oriental background, but they did speak English.
This is me in 1995-1996 6th grade year. I've always been a fanatic to crazy, weird and funny cartoons. There were times that I would think I was a cartoon character in school (which would usually get me in a lot of trouble.)
My first artistic journey I guess you can say started here
Me, Christmas of 1991 when I got my first art set. I didn't really do much with it; nor did I feel like drawing anything because I wasn't much of an artist. All that changed a couple years later when this show made its debut
After I saw the "Stimpy's Invention" episode, it was on that Saturday after Saturday morning cartoons went off that I picked up a pencil and drew my first cherished cartoon character (which looked a lot like a deformed configuration of Skeeter Valentine from Nickelodeon's Doug.) It's just a shame that I threw away all my early pictures, but I was too young to really grasp the concept of keeping them.
I would continue to constantly watch cartoons everyday, every minute, every hour learning and laughing to the many things I wanted to draw.
by this time, Cartoon Network had finally become available in our area which made me want to draw more (given the fact that I already had Saturday morning cartoons, Disney, Disney in the afternoon and Nickelodeon on my side now) now a had a network that had cartoons on 24/7. Oceanic Cable was the name the cable company that we had out in Hawaii (which made sense, seeing as that we were in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.)
Around mid 1996, I graduated from Elementary school and was on my way to middle school (in which the school was called Wahiawa Intermediate School)
This was my bus pass that I still have after all these years when I first went there......No comment on the bus service company name.
It was here that I got my first real teachings of cartoons and other artistic skills. One of those skills was shading and learning how to shade from light to dark....note the image below
We were strictly taught how to perfect creativity and not just create it. If you couldn't do something like the image above, you couldn't get an A in the class straight and simple. It gave me much more respect for art especially given the time and effort it takes to make a good picture. You'll also notice that there's no 8.5'' x 11'' paper being used here. Rarely any of the projects that we had to do was done on 8.5'' x 11'' paper. it was always done on massive poster paper (18'' x 24'') This took 3 days to do.
After I finished it and got my A, I took it home and hung it up on the front door of my room.
The picture was so good, that the principle of the school selected it along with a few others to have it displayed in the office for everyone to see. which is where it stayed.
Name tags were always fun to do. This was my first tag that I did in early 1997. We would usually make them and put key rings around them. This is probably the only cartoon pic that I have of something that I drew in Hawaii. Doesn't look like much....that is until the teacher showed us how to do this
And this was before anyone new anything about Photoshop. There were barely any computers in the school during this era (or at least in this particular school.) this was done with a plastic container of water and paint. the results speak for themselves (a true example of hand crafted greatness.) It's actually easy to do (if you do it right) but easy non-the-less. We also learned Calligraphy hand writing which you can see in the name tag. The teacher did the one at the top I did the one with the Nike check on it.
Early 1997... This was my final project before I left the island of Hawaii. Several artist (including myself) was chosen to work on a giant mural to raise money for the school. I'm the one in the purple basket ball jersey. The Mural took 2 months to finish. We would come to the school every Saturday for the next 2 months to work on it
Hawaii has been a blessing for me in terms of me being the artist that I am today. I always look at Hawaii as my second home away from home; the birth place of my artistry and an ever lasting memory of why I am what I am today.