Eh, so I haven't been making much in the way of art over break. I did a video graphic logo for Olympika, but that's about it. Hence the lack of postings.

I did, however, recently fully complete New Super Mario Bros. (Wii) by getting all the Star Coins in every level. Sweet.



Panoramic (3 photos stitched together) of the 2011 Michigan Men's Gymnastics team.


New Olympika.net

The Wood figures should be done tomorrow, but for now here's a preview of our gym's new website. I am redesigning the site with html to be more user friendly, to enhance our gym's identity/ aesthetic, and to reach a wide range of viewers by cross-contacting social media websites. I am planning on designing a mobile version of the site as well for easy browsing on iphones/ blackberries.

(Like my UM themed browser?)


Web Design

Website that I designed for a local Italian restaurant - entirely in Spanish. Check it out:


Copán Ruins Panorama

270 degree view (almost a complete wraparound)


1st pass of black/ red

They're still rough around the edges but this gives you a pretty good idea of what it will look like. I'll probably go back in with black and red once or twice more on each to build up the paint/ clean up details.


Starting to paint the figures....

A lot going on (designing 2 websites, and starting to paint this installation project) but not a lot to show yet. Just another photo of the wood cutouts pre-painting....



Beautiful view at Raul's family farm. The coast was directly behind me on the horizon. Raul's dad's assistant, ready for trouble with a loaded shotgun, was five feet behind me.


Installation Update - Starting to cut

Did a test cut today with one 4x8 piece of wood (wanted to make sure everything 'worked' before buying all four boards.) Things went surprisingly smoothly. There is a nice wood shop on Raul's family finca (farm), the jigsaw we have is a serious cutting machine, and the cutting went way smoothier/ easier than I suspected. Props to #artschool for teaching me some wood skills.

We opted for 3/8 inch plywood. I was worried that it would be to heavy, but the pieces themselves when cut out are very light, sturdy, and I think will pin flat against the wall easily, without braces.

Gonna do a paint test tomorrow....


Green2 (now blue)

with a sketch for a boat in the foregound. Does it look vaguely epic yet? This kind of look is difficult for me to pull off....


Olympika Installation Update

This is probably the layout I will use when cutting out the figures to make efficient use of the material of each 4x8 board (the brown rectangles). I managed to fit all 7 pieces in + the Olympika logo on 4 sheets of wood which is good.

Once I get hold of a projector and pieces of wood, the work in the "real world" will begin....



Got my digital pen back so messing around with some digital painting again. I want to try and push this further and stick something in the foreground. Trying to stay patient....


Olympika Installation Brainstorm

"Sketching" for a new installation at Olympika Gymnastics here in Guatemala. I think the figures will be cut out of wood and be about life-size. I'll update my progress on the project here....



More Illustrator!


Online Portfolio Updated

New layout online and running, files transferred off the UofM server. I'm ready for the "real world"....


One more.

Proof that I was actually there, with my new haircut (photo courtesy of Jacob, my kayaking buddy):

Rio Dulce/ Livingston Photos

With semi-interesting captions:

Definitely in the jungle (Rio Dulce, on the boat "tour".... I don't think stopping at the mystic "Isle of Birds" counts as cool when I've seen more crows on an Ann Arbor telephone wire.)

Waking up at 6AM to kayak was a sweet idea (my Kayaking-friend Jacob from Israel in the FG.)

My room at the Finca Tatin (my bed, 1 of 4 in the upper room, was a whoppin $5/ night.)

Deep in the gorge. Underground hot springs/ rivers, dense vegetation, steep cliffs. Pretty sweet.

Part of the Siete Altares in Livingston. It's cooler when it rains because the water flows over the rock ledge. Like a tool, I did a back flip off the rock ledge for good measure. Alberto, my tour guide, filmed it (he also taught me some words in a Mayan dialect.)


No pics. sorry.

...There hasn´t been internet at my house for the past week, which has kind of slowed down my digital-self. I got a camera card uploader though for my point and shoot, so I should have pictures from my trip to Livingston/ Rio Dulce up soon.

November might be a busier month for me; I have several Graphic Design projects to work on for the gym, a couple of trips that still need taking, summer camps starting next week that I´ll be teaching (school is over here), and a few more books to pile through now that I´m finished with the titanic Atlas Shrugged (minus the 60 page Galt manifesto.)

Tambien, yo tengo que recordar para aprender Español....


web re-design

Since my umich access expires in November, I used the change as incentive to redesign kentcaldwell.com as I'll be changing hosts soon. Here's a preview image of what I've got so far...


Contact Sheet 1

...I've been pretty good with my 1 drawing per day rule, but don't have a memory card uploader right now to prove it. You don't want to see all of my pencil doodles anyways.

I spent a little bit of time just now playing with some photos from my thesis in Photoshop after a recommendation that the photos of my dioramas might have potential to sell commercially (ie to magazines and whatnot.)


"But there is also too much focus in school on literature written mainly for an audience of critics and teachers. That's a shame because the true glory of literature lies in its ability to hold an audience spellbound with the power of narrative, which is our oldest and most prevalent way of understanding the world." -a quote from David Taylor.

Trying to keep this in mind more in order to loosen up and just write/ tell stories.



I've always loved how bizarre deep sea fish can be. Seeing some real life specimens at the Natural History Museum in DC was incredible, and I realize that no matter what, I'm always in the mood to make up some deep sea critters:

I'm really starting to appreciate Illustrator's flexibility, I just have to adjust to the mechanics of the software and really settle in before I get somewhere I'm happy with.


I'm Obsessed....

Another shot of the ring....

In non-related news, it needs to quit raining in Guatemala. I haven't seen the sun since I've been back, and another mega landslide just wiped out half the main road coming up from the gym to the city. I had to navigate an alternate route, lost about 30 minutes of free time, and traffic is so clogged that I didn't have time to go home before coming to the gym, so I'm sitting here crusted with sweat from my morning workout and without my computer/ book/ sketch pad. I guess things could be worse, but this rainy season just needs to end....

I'm gonna start drawing on paper soon....

But here's a critter done with patterns in Illustartor:



I'm going to have to make an exception/ clarification to this "one post of art per-day" rule. If I am travelling/ touring/ visiting the US to get my national championship ring:
Then I am excused from posting a piece of art. But now that I am back in Guate (after a great trip to Ann Arbor, and after my return flight had to land in Honduras to wait for the visibility to clear before landing in the city), here is yet another Illustrator castle doodle:


Don't Hate

...These are fun, relaxing, new, and satisfy that mathematical/ pattern side of my brain somewhat.


It feels good to be productive

...I might keep whipping up these things in Illustrator and see where I can get....


I'm not used to making art entirely within illustrator, but here's the result of some mindless tinkering....


Congressman Dingell

From a photo taken by Thomas Kelley of our local Michigan Congressman....


A Doodle Per Day....

...keeps laziness away? After my birthday I resolved several things to myself, one of which is to draw 1 sketch/ doodle/ whatever per day.

That means hopefully, one post here per day, because this blog is going to hold me accountable.

I'm glad I didn't give up on this photoshop mess like I almost did 5 minutes into it. Somehow I managed to "break through" and just keep messing up/ covering/ manipulating/ tearing/ smearing/ flattening layers/ adjusting until I got somewhere I liked. Then I flattened that and tried to push and pull parts of the image to get somewhere better. Regardless of the finished product, it felt good to just push through that creative barrier and get to a place where I would make marks without looking back or being hesitant. Sweet.

Antigua/ Agua

Forgot to post this photo I was lucky enough to take last week in Antigua. The sun rises very early (this is before 7AM I think), making for a nice view of the street with the volcano Agua in the background.


Atitlan part 1

The weather finally cleared up for a few days, and my friend Phil and I seized the opportunity to spend a day at Atitlan. This is a lake formed by the collapsed caldera of a volcano (I think that's right), can be crossed by a motor boat in about 30 minutes, is over 1000 feet deep in places, surrounded by volcanoes, you get the idea.... We arrived in Panajachel and then took a boat to Santiago to do some exploring, and had a very good time to say the least. Some pictures:

The water looked awesome about midday:

View of a volcano from the Eastern shore:

...street food can't be beat. 50 cents for this snow-cone, which was topped with pinapple, apple, coconut, and plantains, all soaked in a sweet syrup:


Jade/ Macadamia nuts/ Rain

It's been tough traveling on the weekends because it has been raining so much year. It's rained everyday since I've been here, and far more than a normal "rainy season" in Guatemala. Every time it rains it seems like another mudslide/ bridge collapse/ some other obstacle clogs traffic and makes adventuring more of a chore than fun.

So this past weekend was yet another trip to Antigua, which isn't really that interesting to me, to be honest. However, I went with Bob, and we visited a guy he knew through his old job who was a Jade carver. This guy, Francisco, was very warm and friendly, inviting me and Bob into his home, telling me about how he gets Jade (he goes up the nearby volcano and finds it himself), and how he works with Jade using various diamond-based dental instruments, drill presses, sanders, etc. We had some hot chocolate and cookies while there and some good conversation (his Spanish was easier for me to understand, as he was polite enough to speak slowly). Hopefully it won't be the last time I run into this guy (who reminded me distinctly of Gandalf):

The next day, we travelled to a Macadamia nut farm, had a small breakfast, met the owner (a guy who really liked to tell jokes, and expected you to laugh at them. A bit awkward, but still a very friendly guy) and then visited the old town (San Miguel Escobar) where Bob use to work when he first came to Guate several years ago. There was a goodbye party for a friend of his with steak/ beans/ cake/ rum all served in a tiny, humble home. Really cool, a lot of fun, met some interesting, self-admitted hippies and whatnot.

I'm hoping to get to Atitlan this upcoming weekend, before leaving for DC with my teammates....


Taste the Rainbow

Ever wondered what happens to old school buses? You probably haven’t, but now that I’ve got you thinking, here’s your answer: old school buses from America get brought down to Guatemala, are given extreme makeovers, and become part of the city’s public transportation system.

These “chickenbuses” traverse the roads in Guatemala City and its suburbs constantly, and they come in an amazing variety of colors and styles.

Check out these photos, taken in just one outing into the city (I am building a collection). This is only maybe half of the buses I got photos of today, and I probably saw at least three times as many color combinations:

Oh and this one is pretty ridiculous:

The all-red buses like the one above aren't as visually interesting, and they only serve the heart of the city, but I can't get over the choice of combining a Mercedes Benz logo and symbol of Christ with the Confederate Flag. Spot on, Guate!


Panoramic shots

These are two panoramic shots that I took on the trip Raul and I took to the stables (the Polo Field) where he picked up the horse trailer and also ordered some trucks of sand for his field at the farm.

The top shot was taken on the drive back home. The field itself is low in the valley and right near lake Amatitlan, so to get there you have to drive down a winding mountain road and go through a small village. There was a lookout spot at the top of the climb back into Guatemala City, so I stood there, snapped 7 quick photos, let Photoshop do its Automerge thing, and voila.

The bottom shot is actually taken from the Polo field, and is 5 shots stitched together in Photoshop.

In both photos, the tallest peak (on the left hand side, always capped in clouds) is actually Pacaya, the volcano that I climbed the first weekend and that erupted back when I first visited in May....


Meet Invitation

A meet invitation I designed for the upcoming "Copa Quetzal/ Quetzal Cup" this May 2011, hosted by GIC and Olympika (the gym I work for):



The newest member of the Molina household....