Report of our EXpedition

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Greatest day in American History, November 4th 2008

I write these words simply because America has chosen a person, whom just 150 years ago would have been considered less than human and 1/3rd of an American. Yesterday was the greatest day because Crispus Attucks paved the way, because Harriet Tubman paved the way, because Frederick Douglas paved the way, Ida B. Wells paved the way, because W.E.B. DuBois paved the way, Kwame Nkrumah paved the way because Martin Luther King Jr. paved the way, because Nelson Mandela paved the way, and because countless more people of African decent who endured and decended from slavery and/or colonization paved the way.

The election of an intelligent, thoughtful and eloquent man by a cross section of the various peoples of America, shows that this country is maturing and understanding that America isn't and can't be a homogeneous entity that believes in its own arrogant superiority over others. It is America's diversity, which flows from every country and land throughout the world that makes America the best. Not our military might, not our financial power, but our hope (especially now) which gives everyone the dream to do and become whatever we work hard for.

Do not get me wrong, America still has a long journey to open up equal opportunities for all. Sadly, it may have been easier to elect a Black president of the United States, than to guarantee a person of color or a woman the right to a career or education that they rightfully worked hard for and sacrificed to attain. There are still too many instances where an Educated and qualified African American male will be looked over for a less qualified white male whom the employer may be more comfortable with. The fact remains that whites in this country own the vast majority of businesses, property, and wealth in this country. This fact has spanned from the 1500's until today.

What I hope for and long for is a time when my friends, family, and myself can be judged strictly by our resumes and experience, and not by whether the employer would be comfortable having Blacks work along side them. Barack Obama represents an opening to challenge the discomfort and fears that some whites still have concerning our acceptance into the same schools, places of employment, and entrepreneurship. This man is our leader, and America's representative to the world. He wants us all to have an equal chance and an equal opportunity. We cannot be afraid or stingy with sharing our resources. We must allow all people a chance to become something great, whether we fail or succeed in the process.

My father never had a chance to see such a great, New beginning to our country. He died after years of sacrifice and struggle to make sure his family and so many others, would have a True opportunity to work hard toward what they believed in. He would be so proud now, and would be just as ready to roll up his sleeves and get back to work making sure we All have our chance. My parents are a part of what I call the Greatest Generation, for they marched, protested, and stood up for something greater than themselves, throughout the 1950's, 60' and 70's. Through their work and sacrifice Barack Obama was able to break through. I believe that it is Our time as Generation X, Y, and Z to wake up and stand up for one another. All people of America are responsible for one another. We are Africans, Europeans, Asians, and various indigenous peoples who Are American. We must all respect everyones ancestral roots and cultures, and be strong enough to bring them together as America.

Lets Get to work!

James N Bowman

Sunday, September 21, 2008

EXpedition Status Report 7 sharpening the skills

Everyday it's about sharping the skills you have. You can either do this physically or through thought.
Near the campus where I attend classes there is an Art Institute and they have various free workshops. In the Lobby of the school there was a posting for a life drawing workshop to be held every thursday at 6:00pm. For the past two weeks when I would go to the room where the workshop was suppose to be held there was no one there. Even after waiting for 30 to 45 minutes no one showed up. So last week I decided to give one last hoorah to see if this workshop actually existed. This time I got to the room about 6:50pm and to my surprise there were people. cliche application:"there is something to be said for persistence." So it's me and two other guys a female and the model. The three other artist there were animators for a company called Obsidian it used to be Black Isle. The company has made great video games such as Never Winter Nights and Boldars Gates. Their company sponsered the workshop and provided the model. These guys said they usually started a little after seven because they were getting off work. I thought to myself "Man what a great job enviornment where you work with people all day long then you go and practice your skills with the same people for several more hours."
We worked on various poses till about 10:00pm. It was a great opportunity to discuss all things art, the video game industry, and of course sharpen the art skillz. The only odd thing was there were no art students that attended which was a complete shame seeing that it was free and facilitated by professional industry people...Oh well. I will definitely be meeting with them in weeks to come.

Keep Sharp

Saturday, September 13, 2008

EXpedition Status Report 6

It has been awhile. But, that's ok because we've been extremely busy over the last few months. I finally made the jump to the big L.A.. In just the few months I've been here freelance work has increased incredibly. I truly enjoy talking with and working with other artist that share the same dreams and seem ready to "do" and not just "say".

Monkkey is still under construction and so is the LOGOS. In the move many of my tools to create Monkkey have been lost but I'm getting back up to speed. With LOGOS I'm slowly but surely hacking away at the chapters.

Slice of Heaven, an idea inspired by a drawing, is being brought into reality in the form of greeting cards. The art work for the cards will be from myself and Mr. James Bowman (Poochie) and verses by Keena Ferguson. The cards will feature cute cuddly kids but will also have a sexy contemporary metropolitan animated feel to them as well. That website is nearly completed and the pricing for the cards are still under negotiation.

For those of you who get a chance check out This website features great information and links to a large variety of african american comics and graphic novels.

All of this while I hack away and continue my training as a psychologist. I will be in touch. Keep Sharp!!!

Monday, June 30, 2008

Why is it so hard for creative people to succeed?

I ask this question, after I've seen so many creative people struggling, and I dare say suffering, in order to to fulfill their creative dreams. Suffering, although a harsh word, describes a daily ritual to to maintain a roof over your head, eat, pay for transportation, pay bills, hopefully sleep, and finally find the resources and time to work on their creative craft.

These are not hobbies for which someone might do to consume their free time. Most of the creative endeavors that these individuals pursue, have required years of training, education, and tremendous financial resources. The time, effort, and talent put into creative work is no less than that which a doctor, lawyer, engineer or any other professional has put into their careers. But creative people do not garner the direct admiration and praise for their struggles.

Just imagine hearing we love your work but we don't have anything for you, come back with something new, or your style doesn't fit, only to have to go to work at a clothing store, restaurant or bookstore in order to make ends meet. I know that there are those who would say that it is your fault for choosing such an unstable profession. It's your fault for not going into a field with a good salary.

To be honest, creative people could have just graduated high school and gotten a basic job for thirty years. Creative people could have gotten training in construction, became plummers or electricians. Creative people could have majored in law, medicine or engineering in college. Creative people have the same multitude of career choices as all people, but chose to do something that not only moves themselves, but enhances and even enlightens the lives of others.

Without creative people we wouldn't have films like Wall-E, Star Wars, or 2001. Without creative people there would be no To Kill a Mockingbird, The Color Purple, or Watership Down. Without creative people there would not be a Metropolitan Opera, New York Philharmonic, or Harlem Boys Choir. Without creative people there would not be an Alvin Ailey Dance Company or New York City Ballet. We would not know people like Picasso, Miles Davis, Mozart, Frank Lloyd Wright and many others. Creative people design the cars we drive, the homes we live in, and the chairs we sit on. Creative people make the games that we play and the movies we watch. Creative people are responsible for the clothes we wear and even the containers for our food.

Creative people are responsible for the look, sound, taste, and feel of most things that surround an make-up our lives.

So why aren't creative people given the respect and oportunity to make a living enriching everyone's lives?

This question is open to everyone.