Friday, March 26, 2010


Siena, Italy pen & ink and pastel pencils from a photo taken on my first trip to Italy

Boston Oyster house...from an old photo. Pen & Ink, markers, and pastel

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Friday, March 19, 2010


One of my objectives for the trip to Italy this May is to do as much on the spot drawing and sketching as I can, focusing primarily on the architecture and street scenes. Since my drawing skills have been somewhat neglected over the past several years I have begun working out some of rust and kinks, first with a series of loose studio drawings and paintings, and as soon as the sun comes out, some local on site sketching. I'm also using these exercises to test the variety of papers on hand and see how they respond to the different mediums.

#1 ink...markers, wc pencil

#2 pencil...pastel pencil

Saturday, March 13, 2010


Mixed Media #8...24x24"

I'm definitely moving up in the least up from 12x24 to 24x24"! That is the size of the latest in this series of fun paintings.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


Looking around the studio for a "failed painting" to sacrifice to the art gods my eyes came to rest on this forlorn of the last of my windows series from 2 and 3 years ago. One look at it and I knew I found my sacrificial canvas.

Windows #23...12x24

In this recycle I decided to keep the background and replace the "window", using washes of acrylic, watercolor, and ink.

Mixed Media # 7


Monday, March 1, 2010


San Diego by Harvey Tilker

It was in the mid to late seventies, after five years of bliss in my internal medicine practice when I first became aware of a growing discomfort in my life. The forces that emerged to direct a tumultuous journey from medicine to art are beyond the scope of this narrative, but there is one that I am moved to address.

Have you ever said to yourself upon arising in the morning, “I would really like to move through the day in slow motion, maybe with some soft background music and a fuzzy periphery, just like in the movies”? I did! and with increasing frequency, only to find that was the day of unexpected emergencies, calls, and other demands on my time and attention. The days were not my own, and what was once very rewarding and satisfying work was gradually becoming increasingly burdensome, no longer replenishing the energy they consumed. Imbedded in the growing desire to pursue my dreams of an artist’s life was the need to be able to design my own days, answering only to the demands I chose to place on myself. I had fantasies of what I thought my life would be like as an artist, and not a physician.

I made a decision, and for the next 12 years I was able to spend about 75% of my days in the studio and the remainder practicing medicine. The cost of such a move was great, but the rewards were greater, and none were appreciated as much as the privilege of being able to move through each day in a pace and manner of my own choosing. This was not about the number of hours worked in the day, but about the emotional mood or tone that I brought to the work. I can say unequivocally that my life as an artist was everything I thought it would be.

In 1992 other forces came into play, and in 1993 I resumed private practice on our farm. Nine years later I retired completely from medicine and once more I am in complete charge of my time...and can design my own day!