Monday, March 31, 2014

68. Ice Flow - Digital Photograph

Ice Flow - digital photograph by Bob Bickers
It has been a very long winter here in Pennsylvania, but one benefit is that I have been able to take many more photos of winter scenes, many of which I will turn into oil paintings.  I'll post them here as I do.  This image caught my eye mainly because of the colorful grass and the color and texture of the ice that leads your eye to the white bark birch trees. Subtle color and good composition can turn even an ordinary winter scene into a work of art. I do plan to create some variation of this image as an oil painting.

Friday, February 28, 2014

67. Intellectual Honesty - Digital Photograph

Intellectual Honesty - digital photograph by Bob Bickers
I turned 58 years old earlier this month and I have decided that from now on I will create and post a self-portrait on each birthday, if for no other reason than to keep up my skills.  Self portraits have a long history in the art world and most artists find some advantage in painting them.  For one, the model is cheap and rarely complains.  He is always available when the artist is, and is often open to artistic interpretation.

Here is a version of me that I had fun doing.  In the future I plan to do more work in oils and acrylics and less with digital photographs --unless I get an idea I just can't shake.  If I do, you will see it here.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

66. Afternoon Shadows on the VIrgin River - Photograph

Afternoon Shadows on the Virgin River - by Bob Bickers
Afternoon Shadows on the Virgin River
This was taken at Zion National Park in Utah.  A truly magical place and I have many more images to share in the weeks and months ahead.

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

65. 2013...It Was A Very Long Year...

Blue Heron by Bob Bickers
Blue Heron on the Conemaugh RIver Lake
It has been a very long year indeed.  My extended absence has been due to a number of factors including the death of my father-in-law, the upkeep and repairs to his house and estate, the remodeling of my own office and other things which kept me from this blog and my studio.  This was a year when I used much more house paint that oil paint.

On the other hand, I have taken a number of trips to some pretty exciting places in Utah, Nevada and Arizona and have taken tens of thousands of photos, some of which wil make good reference photos for future paintings and many of which make outstanding images in their own right.  I have only begun to dig into this digital gold mine.

Also exciting is the two kayaks I bought which now allows me much greater access to wilderness areas and wildlife.  I expect to be using these tools much more in my artwork this next year and beyond.

The new year holds much promise.  I come into it leaner, better equipped and eager to produce much more art.  I have several projects under way right now, including the designing of a book cover.  I can't wait for the year ahead to begin!     --Bob Bickers
Bob Bickers at Conemaugh River Lake
Kayaking under a bridge on the Conemaugh River Lake in Pennsylvania

Monday, October 29, 2012

64. A Fascinating e-Book: An Eagle's Sky, My Life as a Birdman, by John Stokes

John Stokes launches his first hang glider in 1975.
In 1975 I was a college student in Memphis, Tennessee.  One of my best friends was John Stokes.  We spent about a decade together in the Boy Scouts (Troop 301 - Chickasaw Council) in a troop that camped every first weekend of every month, regardless of the weather. Add all the summer camps, 50 mile hikes and 50 mile boat trips, and other outings, I calculated we spent about a full year living in the wilderness - almost a tenth of our teen-age years!  John and I eventually became Eagle Scouts and had many adventures until we started to drift apart late in college.

One project that caught John's imagination was the new sport of hang gliding.  He built his own and as he started to try his wings, I sometimes came along to photograph the results. I was very much into photography by then and documenting this unique sight only seemed natural.  Soon the tall hills gave way to larger slopes and eventually to John jumping off of cliffs in his quest to fly with the birds. I took the two photographs shown here in 1975 as John just began to hone his flying skills.  Click on the images to enlarge.

John takes flight - 1975.
John was always interested in birds and raptors in particular, so it was no surprise to me that he later got a job with the Memphis Zoo working with the birds.  Once, John gave me the privilege of being allowed inside the giant enclosure where the Bald Eagles were kept and slowly and carefully approach one of their specimens.  In the early 1990's I saw John again at Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, TN where he was doing a show for the public introducing them to eagles, hawks and other birds of prey.

I shouldn't have been surprised, then, to learn that John had combined his love of eagles with his passion for gliding.  A December, 1997 article in Reader's Digest (The Bravest Eagle, by Kristin von Kreisler) tells the remarkable story of how John helped rehabilitate a young Bald Eagle that had been shot near Osceola, Arkansas, but had his wing amputated.  The eagle, now named Osceola, would never fly again until John found a way to put the disabled bird into a harness and attach him to his hang glider where the two of them soared over the hills and meadows of eastern Tennessee.  The full story of Osceola and the amazing video of his flight can be found here.  One video and then another video have appeared on YouTube.  The story appeared on Good Morning America on October 21, 1996 and the American Eagle Foundation also has the story here.

Now John has published an e-book, An Eagle's Sky, My Life as a Birdman.  It's a fascinating behind-the-scenes look at the events of John's life that eventually led to his partnership with Osceola and the making of what I consider a minor modern-day legend.  Yes, yours truly is briefly mentioned in the book, but it is still worthwhile reading nonetheless. Images related to John and his book are being posted at this blog.

John Stokes, along with his wife, Dale, now works for Save Our American Raptors - South (S.O.A.R. South) rehabilitating raptors and educating the public.  To follow John's current schedule, check out his blog for S.O.A.R.-South.  I might as well include his Facebook page while I am at it: Osceola An Eagle's Sky.

It's satisfying to see John getting some recognition for the fine work he does.  Now if I can just get Reader's Digest interested in a little artwork...!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

63. Red Rock Canyon Road - 2010 - Photograph

This is one photograph I took a couple of years ago at Red Rock canyon outside of Las Vegas, Nevada.  A cloud had started to shade the left side of the photo, but you can see where the park got it's name.  It was the middle of winter back in 2010 when I last there, but I hope to see it again in all it's fiery summer desert splendor soon.  Click on image to enlarge.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

62. ESAL Art Show at The Gallery Space, June 2-30, 2012

Painting the Logo , 9 x 12; oil on gessoboard, 2012
The East Suburban Artists League will present an exhibition of members’ artwork at The Gallery Space in the Monroeville Public Library June 2 - 30, 2012.  The public is invited to attend the Opening Reception at the gallery 7 - 9pm on Saturday, June 2nd where you can view the varied artwork, enjoy refreshments and meet many of the artists themselves.

Most of the artwork will be available for sale.  A portion of the proceeds will benefit the non-profit group, Friends of the Monroeville Public Library.

The East Suburban Artists League is a non-profit association of artists from communities in Allegheny and Westmoreland Counties east of Pittsburgh.  Members include adult artists of all ages who work in all types of media, styles and techniques.  They meet to foster arts and crafts and to educate, inspire and encourage artists and patrons throughout this area.  This is done by lectures, forums, panels and critiques and by League sponsored shows, displays and juried exhibitions.
ESAL meetings are held from September through May, the first Thursday of each month at 7:00 p.m. in the lower level of Christ Lutheran Church on Route 286 at Logans Ferry Road (in Northern Murrysville) and are highlighted by an informative speaker and/or arts and crafts demonstration by an area artist or expert in their artistic field.  Members are also encouraged to bring and show their own artwork to the group.  The meetings are open to the public and visitors are welcome.

Those interested in joining the East Suburban Artists League may contact ESAL’s current Membership Chairman, Bob McAfoos at 412-731-8637 or attend one of their meetings.

The Monroeville Public Library’s Gallery Space is located at 4000 Gateway Campus Boulevard, off of Mosside Boulevard, in the Gateway School Complex. During the show, the Gallery will be open Monday-Thursday, 9AM-9PM, Friday and Saturday, 9AM-5PM and closed on Sundays.  More on The Gallery Space can be found on their website:

The artwork depicted above was a painting I threw together to illustrate the postcard publicizing the exhibition.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

61. Of Stones and Metal - 2012 - Photograph

Of Stones and Metal by Bob Bickers, 2012, photograph
I was walking a trail along a stream last Sunday in Youngwood, PA (just south of Greensburg) when I noted a hatch or manhole cover in the streambed and thought this was just unusual enough to capture a photo.  Click on the image to enlarge.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

60. Duff Park Winter - 2011 - Photograph

Duff Park Winter by Bob Bickers, 2011, photograph
This photograph just won 3rd Place in Landscapes and Scenery in the 2011 Murrysville Photo Contest sponsored by the Murrysville Parks & Recreation Commission.  I will be receiving my award for this contest at a meeting of the commission on April 17, 2012.  Updates on the Murrysville Photo Contest including rules and information for the 2012 Contest can be found at and photos that have been submitted in this and prior contests can be found at .

Sunday, January 1, 2012

59. Welcoming the New Year

First Taste of Snow; photograph; 2011
The New Year promises to be a great one.  I will have a one-man show at the Gallery Space (in the Monroeville, PA public library) the month of December, 2012.  Right now I plan to exhibit local landscapes which I will be painting the rest of this year.  You can track my progress on my website, but I hope to produce at least one new painting a week this year.  We'll see how that goes.  I will continue to do photography too and post my images here.  We had some light snow the week before Halloween in 2011, although the next two months have been pretty snow-free.  It won't stay that way and I hope to be able to create many new snow paintings and photos.  First Taste of Snow was taken in Hempfield Township, Westmoreland County.

Monday, December 19, 2011

58. Ten Years and Still Making Every Day Count

This is a special day for me, for it marks the tenth anniversary of the day I almost died.

Unconscious on a metal table, my body chilled to 93 degrees,  my heart was stopped and machines breathed for me and circulated my blood.  I spent many long hours in this condition while arteries and veins were cut from my chest, arm and legs and then sewn to the blood vessels of my heart.
December, 2001

I had six by-passes at age 45.

It took a while to recover from this operation and it did indeed change my life on so many levels. So many changes. You would think, for example, that a close brush with death would make you appreciate how precious life really is, which I do, and therefore I would become a much more cautious person.  But instead, it made me fearless in the sense that it gave me a new perspective. I knew what was, and wasn't, important and I knew how I wanted to spend the rest of my life. I really was without fear in my dealings with people and in my law practice.  The feeling was, after what I had gone through and survived, there was nothing anyone could throw at me that would compare. I suppose it is the same kind of confidence someone may develop after surviving a major catastrophe. It either destroys you or makes you a stronger, better person. Unfortunately, it also sometimes makes it difficult for me to suffer fools easily and in that respect, it may be more like some elderly persons I have known who are at a point in their lives where they just don't really care what other people think, about them or anything else. While I haven't quite turned into a grouchy hermit, I did learn to slow down and appreciate every single day for its own sake, to stop planning so much for the future, or dwell too much in the past. The past can't be changed and the future is always uncertain. But we all exist in the present, and I needed to live in the present. And so I have.

My children have grown and made me very proud of them.  A lot has happened in the last ten years and I hope to be around for many years to come.  Wealth and success can come and go, but it was the love and support of my family that pulled me through a most difficult time.  I was too ill and weak to set up the Christmas tree that year (the only year I can remember not doing so), but the love and togetherness of our family was so strong, we hardly even noticed. 

The above photo was taken on Christmas Day in 2001 while I was recovering from my surgery. From left to right: Me, Alice Davis (my mother), Alyssa Bickers (my daughter), Tom Davis (my step-father); and Jessica Landis (my step-daughter).  Photo by Diane Landis Bickers (my wife).

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

57. Duff Park Sunset, 20 x 24, oil on canvas, 2011

Duff Park Sunset, 20 x 24, oil on canvas, 2011
Last winter I took a hike in Duff Park in Murrysville, PA, soon after a snowstorm.  I could barely believe my eyes when I saw how beautiful and serene the park appeared, especially with a small stream running through the landscape.  I explored the area all afternoon until dark, filling my soul and my camera with wonderful images.  This painting is based on such an image and it demonstrates my new appreciation for snowy winter scenes.  I can hardly wait for it to snow here again!

This is one of two paintings I now have on exhibit at the East Suburban Artists League's Annual Art Show at Penn State New Kensington (3550 Seventh Street Road (Highway 780), New Kensington, PA  15068). The show runs from December 2, 2011 through January 2, 2012.  The reception (and ESAL's holiday party) is Friday, December 2nd 7-9pm.  The public is invited!  I hope to see you there!

Friday, November 25, 2011

56. Electric Sun, photograph, 2011

Electric Sun, photograph, 2011

It took almost three weeks to recover from a case of the flu and unfortunately, most of November has been a blur to me.  I did manage to take this photograph the day before Halloween when we had just received a bit of snow a day or two before. Click on the image to enlarge.

I attended the opening reception of the 16th Annual Regional Juried Art Exhibition sponsored by the Southwestern Pennsylvania Council for the Arts, Inc., at the Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art at Ligonier Valley on November 19th.  While I did not win any awards this time, I was grateful to find that the curators of the museum liked my painting (see previous post) enough that they chose to hang it on the wall behind the front reception desk, making it the first painting a visitor sees when visiting the museum.  There is a great deal of fine artwork on display and it would make a trip to Ligonier very worthwhile. The exhibit runs November 18, 2011 through February 12, 2012.  

Sunday, October 2, 2011

55. Leaves Upon the Waters, 20 x 24, oil on canvas

Leaves Upon the Waters, 20 x 24, oil on canvas, 2011
This is a view of the Conemaugh River near the Conemaugh Dam in Indiana County, Pennsylvania. This painting has been juried into the 16th Annual Regional Juried Art Exhibition sponsored by the Southwestern Pennsylvania Council for the Arts, Inc., at the Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art at Ligonier Valley.  Reception is November 19, 2011, 6-8PM.  The public is invited. The exhibit runs November 18, 2011 through February 12, 2012.  Click on the image to enlarge.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

54. A Complete Revision of My Website

The last time I did a major revision of my website, I was excited about using some Adobe flash software that made viewing of my artwork easier and more appealing.  You could pick images from a table of small icons or sit back and watch a slideshow of my artwork slide by.  Many artists today use some sort of flash software to streamline the viewing process as I did.  Of course, it wouldn't last.

About a year ago when the I-Pad was released, I was troubled that Apple was refusing to work with Adobe to make sure their software were compatible.  When I finally looked at my website with an I-Pad, I found that the images either didn't appear at all or were thrown into some sort of "retro" mode where they were all the wrong sizes or jumbled up.  In other words, my website was a total mess.  Now that the I-Pad 2 has been released, Apple and Adobe, like a couple of misbehaving little brats, are still not talking to each other.  Unfortunately (sigh), it is clear to me that the use of I-Pads and similar instruments is only growing and may dominate the way most people view information on the internet, along with their smart phones.  It was time for me to make some adjustments.

I therefore revised my website to make it more friendly to all types of operating systems and to especially make it easier to use on a tablet-style computer (I hope).  Please go ahead and check my website out for yourself.  I think you will like it.  

There are exciting times just ahead.  I am working on a number of new paintings and will have them exhibited in various shows over the next year.  I will be updating and adding more paintings and more photographs to my website on a regular basis and you can expect to see more frequent postings here as well.  It is a good and exciting time to be alive!

Monday, September 12, 2011

53. Deep Woods Respite, 18 x 24, oil on canvas

Deep Woods Respite, 18 x 24, oil on canvas, 2011
This is the latest of a series of landscape paintings I am preparing that focus on various aspects of the seasons, especially as I see them here in Pennsylvania.  Click on the image to enlarge.

Monday, June 27, 2011

52. Michaels Incorporates Two of My Paintings in It's Advertisement Campaign for Fine Art Classes

Although my tenure as a Certified Grumbacher Fine Art Instructor at Michaels Arts and Crafts Store only lasted six months last year, I was surprised recently to find that Michaels had elected to use two of my paintings in it's website promoting the acrylic fine art classes I had taught. If you look up art supplies at the Michaels website and then click on "Fine Art Classes at Michaels" you will see the advertisement at left. Moving your cursor over the "Floral 1" bar or the "Seascape 1" bar shows additional images of these paintings. The seascape and the floral paintings are, of course, mine and are shown below.  I am quite pleased and honored to have my artwork showcased this way and I sincerely wish Michaels luck in the promotion of their acrylic fine art classes.  More about my association with Michaels and Grumbacher and the artwork created there can be found at my Post No. 46Click on any of the images to enlarge.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

51. Giuseppe Moretti's Ladies of Highland Park, Pittsburgh, Digital Photograph Diptych, 2011

Giuseppe Moretti's Ladies of Highland Park, Pittsburgh, Digital Photograph Diptych, 2011
Last year I visited Highland Park in Pittsburgh and was greatly impressed with the enormous columns that stood on either side of the entrance to this old and stately park.  Providing light on either side of the street were these two magnificent bronze statues created by the sculptor Giuseppe Moretti late in the 19th century.  I was struck by the greenish-blue patina on the statues and decided to print my own digital interpretation of these works of art.  Note that this diptych and the oil painting of the Conemaugh Bridge (in the post below) were both juried into the "History Through Art" Exhibition being held by the Southwestern Pennsylvania Council for the Arts and the Greensburg Art Club at the Rowe Gallery (at 230 Todd School Road, Greensburg, PA 15601) and will be on exhibit July 15, 2011 through August 26, 2011.  Opening Reception is on Saturday, July 16, 2011.  The Rowe Gallery is open Tuesday-Friday 10:00am-4:00pm; Wednesday Evening 7:00pm-9:00pm; Saturday 1:00pm-4:00pm and closed Sundays & Saturdays.   Click on the image to enlarge.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

50. Conemaugh Bridge No. 4 on the West Penn Trail, 18 x 36, oil on canvas, 2011

Conemaugh Bridge No. 4 on the West Penn Trail; 18 x 36; oil on canvas; 2011
A short distance east of Murrysville, Pennsylvania, where I live, is a section of the West Penn Trail which crosses back and forth across the Conemaugh River along a series of old stone railroad bridges built over a century ago.  Stained yellow and red by the iron deposits washing out of the many flooded mines upstream, the bridges have always been a source of fascination for me.  I decided it was about time I went ahead and painted one of these stately wonders of another era.   

This painting and the digital photograph in the next post above were both juried into the "History Through Art" Exhibition being held by the Southwestern Pennsylvania Council for the Arts and the Greensburg Art Club at the Rowe Gallery (at 230 Todd School Road, Greensburg, PA 15601) and will be on exhibit July 15, 2011 through August 26, 2011.  Opening Reception is on Saturday, July 16, 2011.  The Rowe Gallery is open Tuesday-Friday 10:00am-4:00pm; Wednesday Evening 7:00pm-9:00pm; Saturday 1:00pm-4:00pm and closed Sundays & Saturdays. Click on the image to enlarge.

Update:  This painting won Third Place in oils/acrylics at the 2011 Murrysville Women's Club Annual Art Show held at the Murrysville Municipal Building on October 8-9, 2011.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

49. Bethany Blair Bickers Receives (Another) College Degree

Bob and Beth Bickers
I am proud to announce that my oldest daughter, Beth (posing with me at left), received her Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Memphis on May 8, 2011.  Her major was Criminal Justice and at this time she is seeking a job in that field.  Beth had already earned an Associate Degree in Graphic Arts in 2007.

I know that Beth has worked very hard to get this far and I wish her a very rewarding (and safe) career in law enforcement.  She is only the third generation from my side of the family to be college-educated, and I hope that is a chain that will continue into the future.  Beth is a fine young woman with a bright future and exciting times ahead of her.

Speaking of bright, Beth's younger brother, Brad, just completed his first year of college on the Dean's List.  That's the sort of thing that makes me proud.  Keep up the good work, Brad.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

48. Serving as Juror for The Gallery Space, Monroeville, PA

The Gallery Space, Monroeville, PA Public Library
The public library of Monroeville, Pennsylvania, next to the Gateway High School, is host to The Gallery Space, a special place to showcase artwork by established and aspiring artists from throughout the Western Pennsylvania area.  The gallery is in a lovely setting with a natural stone wall at its focal point and two additional walls to showcase art.  In addition, an exhibiting artist has room for more art behind the front desk and in the snack cafe next to it.  The image above gives a 180 degree view of the main gallery.  The present curator, Sally Wightkin, and a dedicated group of helpers from the gallery's sponsors, The Friends of the Monroeville Public Library, work tirelessly setting up and maintaining the gallery and its many exhibits (a new one every month!) throughout the year --and all as volunteers.  Now that's a labor of love.  Commissions from the sale of artwork at these shows benefit the public library in Monroeville.

Exhibitions at The Gallery Space have been a tradition since 1965.  When I had my first show there in 2001, only six artists would be selected to exhibit each year with each show lasting two months at a time.  By the time I exhibited there again in 2007, exhibits were limited to one month.  While I wasn't pleased by the shorter shows, the fact is that the shorter shows made this forum accessible to twice as many artists and, as I later discovered myself, was quite necessary. In 2008, I was honored when Sally Wightkin asked me to assist her and help select, from the many submissions, those artists (and artist organizations) that would be selected for exhibitions at The Gallery Space in the next two years.  The number and quality of submissions were so overwhelming, we finally decided to extend the period we were judging another year.  It was a very enlightening experience for me.

Another call for artists has been extended by The Gallery Space in which those wishing to exhibit are asked to bring three examples of their artwork (or a CD of 6-10 examples of their artwork) to the Monroeville Library on Friday, April 29, 2011.  Art groups can bring 6-10 original works or a CD of 12-20 images.  Again, I have been asked by Sally to assist in the selection process.

I have been doing serious art for over 30 years and fine photography for even longer.  I've had three shows at The Gallery Space the last 10 years and participated three other times in exhibits there by the East Suburban Artists League.  I have had numerous solo and group exhibitions and my work has appeared in galleries, museums, major corporate headquarters, newspapers and the cover of magazines.  I have won plenty of awards, have taught oil and acrylic art classes for major national corporations and I have served as a judge and juror for a number of local organizations and major art exhibitions.  While there are plenty of artists and art instructors who have done more than I and have better credentials, my point is that I have had some experience in a lot of things, and am independent and confident enough not to be overly worried about the politics in art (and, yes, every human endeavor involves politics), and I hope, at 55 years of age, I've learned to learned enough to keep all of this in perspective.  Anyway, I've been told I am pretty fair and level-headed and I will do my best to remain objective and judicious.  I have to think too that it helps being an attorney where I often and regularly serve as an arbitrator for the Court of Common Pleas in Pittsburgh.

Be sure to get your submissions in for consideration!  I will probably write something afterwards about the whole process.  And thanks again, Sally, for this opportunity to serve again.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

47. Painter in the Park, 12 x 12, digital photograph, 2011

This image was based on a photograph I took of an artist painting flowers in a park in Boston the summer of 2007.  Click on the image to enlarge.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

46. Acrylic Fine Art Class I Taught at Michaels as a Certified Grumbacher Fine Art Instructor in 2010

I am not teaching a fine art class at this time, but I did teach an acrylic fine art class as a Certified Grumbacher Art Instructor at various Michaels stores at several locations in Tarentum, Monroeville and Greensburg, Pennsylvania in 2010.  It was a pleasure being able to teach art classes once again and I look forward to doing something similar at some point in the future. The acrylic fine art program will go on and Grumbacher is presently looking for my replacement at these Michaels stores, so be sure to check with them to see if Acrylic Fine Art Classes are being offered at these locations. Class schedules at Michaels stores can also be found at:
The following are some of the materials and paintings used in the acrylic art classes at Michaels which may assist you in exploring acrylic painting.  While these may not represent some of my more finished work, they are examples of what can be done with acrylics in a two-hour class.

The image at bottom is the reference photo given to me by Grumbacher for the landscape painting, and the other images are paintings I taught.  As the classes moved into autumn and winter, we shifted the landscapes to reflect the outside conditions.  The Landscape Lesson Plan can be found here (warning:  this is a large file).  Here is the class syllabus.

The flowers on the left are paintings and the reference photos are show on the right.  The first reference photo at top and the one at bottom center were given to me by Grumbacher.  The other two photos are mine.  Click here for the White Daisies Floral Lesson Plan and here for an additional Floral Lesson Plan (which I never had the opportunity to teach). The Floral Class Syllabus can be found here.

Below are the Seascape paintings I taught at Michaels and at bottom the reference photo I was given.  Click here for the Seascape Lesson Plan and click here for the class syllabus.

Below are the still lifes I taught with my reference photos at the right.  At bottom is another reference photo which you are free to use to practice painting.  The Still Life Lesson Plan is here and the Syllabus is here.


(Right) My final acrylic art class as a Grumbacher Instructor at Michaels on 12/18/2010.  Pictured with me are two of my most loyal regular students, Wei-Duan Liao at left and Judy Zeman at right.   Sincere thanks to all of my students. It was great fun while it lasted.