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“Strength grows out of struggle”

September 28th, 2011

“The strongest trees in the forest aren’t those most protected; they are those that must struggle against the elements and other trees-and surmount them- to survive. Strength grows out of struggle”
Napoleon Hill.

Most people try to find the easy way, the quickest way,not wanting to work as hard way. Yes this would be ideal but it doesn’t happen in nature and it usually does not happen for us either. I think if we approach life and it’s challenges in a way that we become aware of the challenge and accept the challenge all that can happen is growth which will eventually lead to a desired success.
Make it a great week.

Thanks for coming over

September 26th, 2011

indy2Facebook unfortunately has made it so I can no longer send out my positive e-mails. if you wish to get these messages again weekly, you need to click the “Subscribe to Passion For Life by Email” button.
Thanks and sorry for any inconvenience

Experience tells you what to do

June 28th, 2010


“Experience tells you what to do, confidence allows you to do it.”
Stan Smith, tennis player

One of the biggest parts of growth for me is gaining experience. Getting out there and trying something , anything that I may not have been that familiar with. Trying lots of things builds up your experiences and therefore gives one a better understanding of what it is your involved in. So by having the knowledge and experience of something it will truly guide you in what to do. I believe most of my ideas to take the next step in whatever project I am involved in comes from taking some first step. I think the biggest secret is what Stan Smith said, having the confidence and believing in yourself will allow you to do it. This is often what will stop us in our tracks. We don’t know what will happen. Well in this case I will tell you exactly what my dear old dad told me one day. I remember it vividly. I was about 18 years old sitting on the couch in my parents living room worrying about what will happen if i ask the shopping mall management for something I wanted as I was drawing caricatures during the christmas season and “WHAT IF” they said NO. So my my father said what’s the worst that can happen, what are you afraid of the most. Well, I said, I don’t want to drown and being stabbed wouldn’t be that good either. So he said, well are they going to drown you or stab you, and I replied no. So the worst think that could happen is that they say NO. And he was right. from that point on I would always have the confidence to just do it and try it.

Make it a great week!


June 7th, 2010

What I am about to share, is a letter to myself that I wrote. My mind is in a state of constant discovery and it is exciting.

Discussing life with my kids the other morning on the car ride to school, I came home and went for my morning walk with my dogs. While walking them, I began to think about all the mixed thoughts you are about to read. So I came home and started writing down the thoughts in my head. It is spontaneous and long, but it is my hope that it may answer questions that I think many of us have. I wasn’t going to post this and just keep it to myself, but I have received so many personal e-mails from struggling artists that I thought it would be good to share. the true essence of this is about enjoying the moments we are having right now.

Stephen Silver

“Please sir, may I have some more!!”

This is a line from Oliver twist, it stuck out to me because I am constantly trying to explore the way our thoughts and our mind works. I stumbled upon the thought, that as humans, we are always searching for more,even when we get what we ask for, we embrace it for a while but then we want something more. Why is this?

Looking at several scenarios and watching the Biography and History channel, I have noticed that the wealthiest people seem to always want more, thus creating and producing more, and receiving it, but many of them seem to still not be satisfied. Why? Is it because of the need for something more.

I realize more often that there is one true thing to plant in our minds and that is to enjoy what we have right now. No matter how much or how little we have. Life is a series of events, and things will happen. I have seen it. Why are there so many divorces, is it because someone got what they wanted in the beginning and then it didn’t go as planned so now they want something more. What about the job we wanted, that we now have, but now we want something different something more. Do we spend too much time looking into the window of other peoples lives and think to ourselves we want more, we need this we need that. Is this just the true nature of mankind and anything else would be fighting it?

True happiness and content, I believe, can only be achieved when you truly enjoy what you have right now.
How can this be achieved? How does one relax with their eyes wide open? What is the feeling we think we would have by having more, is it the exact same feeling we are having now, I think so, why wouldn’t it be. All the things that we have accumulated in our lives, we wanted at some point in the past and now we have it, did it change anything? for a little while.

As an artist, my whole being is the pursuit of bettering my art by experimenting, exploring, understanding, thinking, telling, discovering new answers, looking for more.

Why does it have to take some form of tragedy within a life for us to appreciate what we have, we know life is short, so what’s the rush, before we know it the end is here. Granted yes, money they say can buy you freedom, does it? or does it bare more responsibilities, more stress, more drama, more expenses. If you really want something or to do something, why not make a list of everything you thing you want or need, I mean everything. See how many of those in reality you can have right now, it may stating something such as “I want to be outside in the fresh air more often in front of a campfire”.

Why are we so competitive with each other? Why does it even matter what someone else is doing? can’t we just do what we do, make our lives the best we can make it. Why does it feel good to win something or gain notoriety, why is this important. What does it mean? We live in a world where unfortunately everybody is taking notes off other peoples business, you can never be someone else. You can only be you. Why does it matter what other people think, how does that effect you?

Through simple enjoyment of what one has, I believe “MORE,” just happens. So why put any crazy thoughts in your head, a thought that can drives one nuts. Why create the story of future events that haven’t occurred yet, unless Doc Brown can make us a time machine and travel into the future. Why even waste that energy in frustration, is it going to solve something. NO, it will create worry in your head.

Is it the monotony of the 9-5 day job, working five days a week, sometimes more, in the same routine of daily activities that brings us the longing for more, can it simply be a matter of changing one’s daily routine. Maybe you become more spontaneous and do things like walk up the side of a mountain you pass by every week that you always might say, one day i’m going to climb that, yet never do. I feel I have discovered that it is the same routine over and over that creates this need for more, but that routine never ends, you will always be creating a schedule. So how do we change our routine, what do we need to do to make it all fun, new and right now. Well, I Believe spontaneity is the answer.

Those of us with children understand routine to the max, especially bedtime. Yet there is a real beauty in having kids that I am constantly reminded of, and that is, I get to be a kid again. You explore new things, things an adult usually wouldn’t do unless they were with a child. Things such as swinging on a swing in the park and running across the bridge, going down a pole or a slide on a playground set. Finding farting to be so funny and boogers hanging from a face that seems to have a bit of humor, shooting a Nerf gun and walking down the aisle of a toy section in a store, jumping on a bouncy again until you’re exhausted. Playing video games again and watching movies from when I was a kid wanting to introduce them to my kids.

Before you know it, it may be all too late. That longing for more never got you anything that counted. I heard on a show the other day,”You can’t take your bags of luggage in the Hearse”. The Egyptian kings got nothing in the end but robbed.

HERE TODAY, the title of a Paul McCartney song, to his dear friend who had passed,John Lennon. Why do we spend so much time reflecting on what was. Can’t that was, be right now? Do what you have to do, and enjoy it! This I believe is the key. Live it, feel it. Every action becomes a new memory, so the secret is to create millions of memories not just dozens. And most important is sharing with other people the experiences of it all.

Stephen Silver

belief in a thing makes it happen.

May 17th, 2010

The thing always happens that you really believe in; and the belief in a thing makes it happen.
_Frank Lloyd Wright, architect

One of my favorite things to do is watch the Biography channel, History channel or any show with great interviews such as Oprah. I have recently become addicted to a show called “How’d you get so rich” with joan rivers. Even American Idol is on the top of my list. My main purpose and reason for watching all these shows is because everybody has a story, one which we can always learn from, pick up bits and pieces and is always a constant reminder to me that the majority of these people, believed in what it is they set out to do. They had a vision, a passion a dream and they made it a reality. I choose not to sit and watch and just say they are so lucky, why couldn’t that be me. I understand they have all had to work hard and follow their belief. I don’t believe in the word luck, I believe in the word persistence and through that opportunities will arise. Watching these stories weekly reminds me that we all have the ability to accomplish what we want as long as we are passionate about it and not being forced to do it.
Make it a great week and be sure to take a peek at my little greeting card line7. Just trying something new.


May 12th, 2010

Design a personalized gift at Zazzle.

The Hundredth time I am right.

May 10th, 2010

I think and think for months and years. ninety nine times, the conclusion is false. The Hundredth time I am right.

Albert Einstein

Albert has it right, not everything you do think and say is going to be correct, at first, but like I teach my kids, with practice and effort you will eventually get it right. Hearing lots of people discussing the same issue on my Artcast as far as them sending out many resumes and their portfolios and not getting a response, I believe, as long as you persist and keep planning and thinking you are bound to hit. It may take months it may take years but the true lesson is never give up.
Live artcast tomorrow night Tuesday 7pm PST time zone.

Make it a great week

In The Company of Heroes…

May 4th, 2010


This past week I spent my time in the company of Heroes. I had the wonderful opportunity of volunteering with eight other cartoonists from the NCS (National Cartoonists Society). The USO sponsored our mission to travel to Washington D.C and then to Germany to the front lines of where our wounded warriors are taken care of and draw for them. When one of our soldiers are wounded in Iraq or Afghanistan they are flown immediately to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center (LRMC) in Landstuhl, Germany. They will spend unto 72 hours there depending on their condition and then they will be flown to Walter Reed medical facility in Washington D.C. We were told that to date, they have only lost 3 lives once they were in the Landstuhl facility. The doctors have been doing an excellent job.

The majority of warriors will fortunately never see a battle again, but unfortunately have been disfigured and lost many of their limbs. It was an eye opening experience, a sad one and an enlightening one. Our job was to go boost the soldier’s moral by either drawing their favorite cartoon characters or drawing their caricature. They loved it. The USO told us that the visit from the cartoonists is the most appreciated and their favorite visit. I could really sense that when we went from room to room visiting with what they call “our wounded warriors” and they are warriors indeed. I heard so many heartfelt stories as I had the chance to speak with these guys one on one. There are so many that I can’t write them all here. The one thing that I discovered was their undeniable bravery. Whether they were missing a leg or had been shot in the neck or chest, they were willing and ready to go back and finish their tour of duty down range (their term for
the fight) with their mates.

Every day I sit in the comfort of my own home studio, I have a roof over my family’s head, a hot shower and an abundance of good food and clothing. I have the ability to walk into any store and buy whatever I like (for the most part). I have air conditioning in my home for when it is too hot, and a heater for when it is too cold. This experience for me was another daily reminder as to how fortunate we really are. I met a young Marine who had just come back from surgery, he was 21 years old and had no more legs to stand on and no hands to touch with, this was the hardest one for me, yet he was thrilled to meet us and get some artwork to hang on the bare walls. As I write this I am tearing up thinking of his sacrifice. I met another young Marine taunted with guilt as he described how his best friend was killed next too him because as a squad leader he had told him to open a door that they didn’t realize was booby trapped with an explosive.

I was born an Englishman and am proud to now call myself an American. It feels amazing to be able to give just a little bit back through my drawings to the guys who are protecting our freedom. I am proud to have been in the company of heroes. No lines are too long; no traffic jam is too bad. We are free and there is a huge sacrifice that I have now seen first hand. I am grateful for all of the warriors and to have been invited by the USO to be a part of such a wonderful project.
Make it a great week.
You can view a little slideshow “>here.

April 19th, 2010

This past weekend I did a life drawing workshop at Laguna College of Art and Design. My whole philosophy on life drawing and this can apply to your daily life whatever it my be, is to change your approach and habits. The only way you will find out what really works for you is to try different things, use different mediums whatever it may be. In the life drawing workshop I encourage the students to use mediums they are uncomfortable with. This helps you find your strengths and weaknesses. My philosophy to life itself is to constantly try and change it up, this helps from remaining complacent being stuck in that one place and eliminates boredom.
Another live artcast tuesday night at 7pm PST time zone
This back to the future print is available on my site

Make it a great week!

What seems to work

April 12th, 2010

I’ve talked about this topic many times but i think it is an important one. It is one that challenges us everyday of our lives so I feel it is worth mentioning again.
THINGS HAPPEN! We are challenged on a daily basis with some form of obstacle that may not go the way we wanted or expected. Well, I am here to say it is perfectly normal. It happens all the time to everyone so you are not alone. The solution I have found is to simply accept the fact that this will happen and the best thing to do is to think about all the other things that are going right, I guarantee it will outweigh the slight hiccup that may have occurred. It is a mindset and a habit which through daily practice will help keep your mind at ease. Start today by writing down just ten positives in your life. It may be a s basic as my eyes opened this morning and my feet touched the ground, often something taken for granted, but is a positive.

Make it a great week.