John S. Dykes
January 2007
Reportrait: James Alenson
I turned on the radio on Friday morning and heard some talk of security at schools, and just what is appropriate. The conversation continued with a report that there had been a stabbing at Lincoln-Sudbury Regional High School - here in my town of Sudbury, 17 miles west of Boston. My 15 year old son Jeffrey attends school there as a freshman. James Alenson, also a 15 year old freshman was involved in some sort of fight in one of the boys' bathrooms with John Odgren, a 16 year old sophmore. James died less than an hour later from knife wounds to his stomach and heart, as well as his neck. Odgren lives in Princeton, MA (45 min west) but attended school here under a program called 'GO' - Great Opportunities. He has a mild form of autism, called Ausperger syndrome, and was on several medications. Students described him as a loner (we have all heard this before...) who wore a trench coat, and often spoke of violence. The day before, he had described to a friend about a book he was reading - and how he was fascinated by a part that described the sound of dripping blood. And there were other indications in his conversations of this dangerous mind at work. He gave signals... ************ James' family moved to Sudbury just 6 months ago... for the great school system - as did we. My heart goes out for James Alenson's family.
Remember Whitewater?
Talk about conspiracy theory! Here's a bad scan of a 'Whitewater' landscape I never did anything with... I even had fun with a golden rule type composition. See the Trooper with the bloodhound? James McDougal sitting on his camper throwin' dice... Ol' Web Hubbell behind a tree... Madison Guaranty sinking...Susan McDougal in her bathing suit (Why? I don't know...) I think it was this that led to a Time portrait assignment of Susan McDougal (follows) (another bad scan....).
Craig Livingstone, Bar bouncer turned head of White House security... You can't make this stuff up! (for Time)
Reportrait: Hugo Chavez
Reportrait: David Lynch
This is a fast portrait for the Boston Globe done right before this year's great Christmas exodus. I just added the hand written story to it... (it was published without my commentary). I love getting interesting people to draw. I am a big believer in the power of meditation... Although I don't practice it as regularly as I'd like to... usually when the pressure heats up with life and deadlines - it is , besides excercise, the best way to get grounded, and to slow down a bit. But as with anything, regular practice does wonders. I just read the other day, that even if you are not able to give it 20 minutes - do it for a minute or two - because it is that regularity that is key. (Like drawing every day... you know the drill...). David Lynch is starting a foundation to try to raise some crazy amount of money in order to turn more and more people (like everyone) onto TM. It is, if anyone is interested. And he's got a book coming out soon called "catching the Big Fish". Might be an interesting read.
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Dykes is teaching at TutorMill, an online mentoring site for students of illustration!