Chris Sickels: Queen of Diamonds
Chris Sickels, the creative force behind Red Nose Studio, creates an eccentric and inviting miniature world with puppets, textures and light. Red Nose Studio’s illustrations appear in advertising, magazines, books, newspapers, packaging, character development and animation. His work has been featured in HOW, Print, Creativity, Communication Arts, and American Illustration. The Society of Illustrators has awarded three golds and a silver medal for both illustrative and motion work. His stop-motion animated films have screened at various festivals including Los Angeles International Short Film Festival and Montreal Stop-Motion Film Festival. He authored and illustrated The Look Book, and has illustrated the children’s books Here Comes The Garbage Barge, The Beginner’s Guide to Running Away From Home, and The Secret Subway.
Hans Jenssen: Ace of Clubs
Born in Kopenhagen, Denmark, Hans Jenssen has lived most of his life in the UK and graduated from Medway College of Design in the south east of England in 1984. He has spent much of the intervening time drawing and painting the insides of vehicles, machines and buildings of all kinds. He is best known for his part in illustrating Dorling Kindersley’s best-selling Star Wars Incredible Cross-Sections books.
Stephen Johnson: Jack of Spades
Through forceful, abstract brushstrokes, representing the effect of warfare, intermixed with fragments of the Jack of Spades card, which in my view are symbolic of every soldier, my monoprints celebrate and honor the contribution of each individual veteran to a larger whole.
In addition, this particular monoprint honors my great-grandfather, Dr. Thomas William Salmon who served as chief consultant of psychiatry in the American Expeditionary Force during WWI. Dr. Salmon was outspoken against the human administrative politics of the day and voiced his concern for his injured patients and returning soldiers and the enormous psychological impact of warfare. He was instrumental in creating new procedures for treating what is now called PTSD, organized a military neuropsychiatric service and base hospitals, set up a system for the treatment and rehabilitation of veterans, and pushed for the creation of veteran hospitals nationwide. He had a warm, compassionate, and understanding demeanor and was beloved by his soldiers and staff.
When I was seven years old my brother Donn joined the marines. It was 1942. He was fifteen years old. He forged his birth certificate and badgered my father into vouching for him.
At boot camp on Paris Island the DIs knew he was too young and tried to make him quit by being especially hard on him. It made him all the more determined and tough as a pit bull.
Ken Laird: Jack of Hearts
My name is Kenneth Laird and I am an artist, illustrator, designer and creative director from High Point, North Carolina. I received my Masters in Illustration from Syracuse University in 2002 and was taught and trained by many of the men and women in this show. The piece was created using graphite pencil, an actual inlayed photo reproduction and Photoshop for pre-press. As a visual communicator my work has always been representational and very realistic.
Paul Jennis: King of Diamonds
His majesty the King of Diamonds sits on his fancy throne, a New York City Park bench. His subjects are the pigeons that flock to him for food to survive even though he has little food for himself. Although he is homeless he sits there with dignity wearing the crown of his uniform knowing that he has served his country well and protected the American way of life. Behind him is his memory as a US soldier with an embattled past that still haunts him and can be seen through the vail of a broken American fence. The sign on the bench is for you the public to help all homeless vets not just him. The card, the king of diamonds in his pocket, represents his badge of honor. It is the card he has been dealt in life’s journey and one of many reasons to support our American Veterans. This painting brings attention to the issues of PTSD and Homeless Veterans for the cause of 52 Reasons to Love a Vet.