Sunday, April 17, 2011

People in Switzerland

          First a shout-out and congrats to my friend Johnny in the States. His work is getting published in the first compendium of artwork produced by the art-monsters over at Gorillaartfare. He is a member of the group of 100 artists from all over the world in the fields of comic art, concept art, fine art, and illustration. They all form a collective blog since 2006, determined to rid the world of bad art forever!

                               (This cover designed by Vic and Fed.  Illustrated by Tom, Devin, and Clo)

                      The book can be ordered here at CFSL Ink, should be available April 28. For more info about this beast of a beauty here's a detailed post on Gorillaartfare's blog. I will be getting my signed copy this weekend at the Polymanga 2011 event in Lausanne, Switzerland. (April 23-25) And I'll get to meet the French artist Clo in person!

               The drawings in this post are of various people I have met and interacted with in Switzerland.

                 Met this girl Jessica on the steps next to the Rhein River in Basel. She is a native Swiss. Her mother is from Basel, her father from Africa. Jessica was born and raised in Geneva. She started playing basketball at age 6 and fell in love with the sport. At 19 she came to the States to play for Toledo University in Ohio. She suffered an injury and was out for almost a year but finished school. She is back in Switzerland now, living in her mother's city of Basel. She told me that the injury was a blessing as she is now interested in pursuing other things, even though she could go pro after her injury. She wants to move to India within a year or more. 
                 So how I met her I was sitting there on the steps drawing buildings on the other side of the Rhein and there was a man next to me jammin' on his guitar. Then Jessica came over to this man and joined in, singing with him and another woman. It was so beautiful to see and hear and I knew I had to meet these people. I introduced myself and spent the next hour chillin' on the steps with them and listening to their gorgeous souls. Jessica is singing in the drawing above.

           Ahhhhh...more music. Came out of the Basel train station and there was this man Elarios playing on a wooden xylophone. Totally floored me and I had to stand and feel him and draw. Hope you can feel the music in this drawing. I had actually met this man before, he's a colleague of a young woman in my dorm, Olga. They both are at the Music Academy here in Basel. He also made an appearance at Olga's boyfriend's Master Concert in Luzern. I was there, here is my flyer from the event.

(signed by Juan Sebastian Rozo) :D

                Yeah, so Juan is Olga's boyfriend, he was the key player in and behind this performance. But Olga, Elarios, and many others performed with him as well. Unfortunately, the footage from this performance is not yet online, but here is a video from backstage, with the many musicians that took part.


                                    A drawing of Olga and Juan, they both come from Colombia.

                                   My friend Niels, who lives in the same dormitory as me. He's a chill and cool guy, pursuing a career in nanotechnology. We've gone clubbin', and GOA dancin' together, chillin' at the steps and just enjoy the life here in Basel.

                           This guy Dominique I met through the Couch Surfing group here in Basel. For those who don't know what Couch Surfing is, check the link above, it's a wonderful way to connect with people and travel. Dominique is originally from France and lives there just across the border, close to Basel. He says his favorite place in the world is Prague, and his favorite people live in Basel. He works as a private security/body guard in Switzerland and Europe. Lots of his clients are CEO's and more of his notable ones include the singer Shakira, who he's worked for twice. This guy is freakishly tall, I don't think I've ever seen someone as tall as him before. He's initially intimidating but inside has a teddy bear. He works nonstop four months of the year, and spends the rest of the year traveling and connecting with people across Europe and the world. He's one of the moderators for the Couch Surfing group in Basel. 

                     I'm a part of the ESN group in Basel (Erasmus Student Network), it's a way for exchange students in the Western world to connect with one another. Well, this past Friday there was a free trip for us to go to Schaffhausen in Northeastern Switzerland. We explored the town, and went hiking to the Rheinfall nearby. One of the student organizer's parents' lives nearby and we went to their home after our day and they generously had us all for dinner. While we were all there relaxing from our day I made some sketches. The girl on the top left is from Hungary. Lucy, on the upper right, from the Czech Republic, is the most bombshell girl I have met and interacted with since being here in Switzerland. Matylda, on the bottom right, is from Krakow, Poland and lives on the top floor of my dorm. 

                                     Lucas, on the upper left is from Germany, and Petr is from the Czech Republic, studying European History. Remi, on the bottom left, is from Vienna Austria. We spent last weekend (April 9-10) in Zurich. We went dancing at the Hive, where the DJ Agoria was the feature artist. Remi's older brother Noel (below) also accompanied us, and we crashed at his place in the red light district of Zurich. It's a popular place for students to live as the rent is cheapest there.


                           Some of my extended family in Switzerland. The man on the upper left is my Uncle Fredy, he's a joker and an incredible handyman and automechanic, he likes cars, women, and food. We have two interests in common. :D  The teenage girl on the upper right, Joel, is the only person in the world that could be considered my cousin. The lady on the bottom right, Esther, is Fredy's sister.

                          Two more women and sisters of Fredy from my extended family, Ruti on the left had her birthday recently and we were all there to celebrate. I can't write the name of the woman on the right for security reasons but she is very hospitable and she and Esther picked me up from the airport when I arrived in Switzerland.