1 11 2009

Another year has passed, another Barbarian festival. Last night I went with some friends to ”Muziek theater Romein” in Leeuwarden for another ”Barbaars” heavy metal concert. And this time I managed to make some acceptable photos. We were late. We had a nice dinner at M’s, and then drove to the city of Leeuwarden. So we missed the first band, and as one of the other bands didn’t turn up, we saw three bands. And Waw! Were they good!


The first band was my fovorite; Methusalem. Great music, great musicians, and a great singer!
Check them out on mySpace.

barbaars 6



The next band was Wizard, also very good!

barbarian wizard

barbarian wizard1

The last band was Freedom call.
Some of their songs were “Party-Metal” they really got the crowd going!

barbarian Freedom Call

barbarian Freedom Call1

I had a great time!

Me and the singer of Methusalem.
Or the Singer of Methusalem and me…

Today, yesterday and the day before

26 10 2009

I made these paintings.

Read all about them on my Art blog!

24 Oktober

25 Oktober

26 Oktober

A painted diary

23 10 2009

I have started a new project, I am writing a diary, only not with the pen, but with paint.
I will post these small paintings, with a short description, every day on my art-blog.

This is 23 oktober

23 Oktober

Obama sells out democracy and freedom

23 10 2009

Well, friends it seems that Obama should not have been given the Nobel price for peace, but the Nobel prize for weaseliness selling out our hardwon rights for freedom and free speech.

To my utter amazement the Obama Administration supports the sick and anti-constitutional fascist religious insane Islamic/kolonialist ”Un-resolution to ban religious blasphemy”.

Check this video from the brilliant Pat Condell

Islam versus Cristianity, The Battle

23 10 2009

I’ve made a slideshow!

22 10 2009

Yesterday I discovered I have something called  Windows Moviemaker on my computer and I have made a slideshow of my sketches!

Which you can see at you leasure at my art blog 😉

I also have my own video channel on You-tube!

Drawing at the horse fair

21 10 2009

Yesterday morning I went to the village of Zuidlaaren. Every year, people from all over Europe flock to Zuidlaaren to sell and buy horses.
When you go you should go very early in the morning, Before 07.00. And it is usually very cold so you should get all your winterstuff out and wear it in layers! I bring a fresh sketchbook and a couple of soft pencils (The soft pencils get a lot harder in the cold)
The sketches I made will be posted at my Art Blog.

When I arrived (before 07.00) it was still dark

zuidlaardermarkt Horse fair art

Check out the murderous candy! There is a fair attached to the horse fair and many people spend the whole night there, going on the rides and doing the rounds of the café’s. I always preferred to sleep early and be comparatively fresh when setting out for a hard days work.


Now there are a lot of really ugly, badly built horses. And horses which aren’t quite healthy, But then they are one of the reasons I like to sketch at the fair. And every year I fall for one of these horses! If I had some money I might actually take one home!

So… Wanna see ”The Artist at Work?”
Go to my Art Blog where I also post videos of ”The Artist at Work”

zuidlaardermarkt Horse fair art 14

The black Frisians are always hugely popular. But the breeding lately seems to aim at a very slender narrow horse. I don’t like it at all; I like the more compact broadly build Frisian. They always carry their head very proudly.

zuidlaardermarkt Horse fair art 3

Norwegian Fjord Horses. Very popular in the Netherlands for those who are not all out to ride competitions, but prefert o ramble around nature.

zuidlaardermarkt Horse fair art 10

After being put there since night not all horses are resigned tobeing tied down.

zuidlaardermarkt Horse fair art 8

There are big horses and small horses.

zuidlaardermarkt Horse fair art 22

Drawing a draughthorse

zuidlaardermarkt Horse fair art 37

The village is absolutely Packed with humans and horses. It’s a miracle no accidents happen.

zuidlaardermarkt Horse fair art 41

A couple of Belgian heavy draughthorses.

zuidlaardermarkt Horse fair art 55

Warmblood ridinghorses, all very young still, basically foals.

zuidlaardermarkt Horse fair art 60


18 10 2009

I want to invite everybody to my new Art-blog!
It is getting the right shape by now and I have put up an ( I hope) interesting post on a portrait of my horse Rabhar.

rabhar-millenium halter

I plan this to be my primary blog in the future, featuring the sketch of the day, and regular updates onmy work as an artist and the work I’m doing.
Clouddragon will remain and feature weekly rants 😈 but I am after all an artist, and I am very much better again, and I am back at work!

I hope to see you at my Art-blog.

Bride of death

16 10 2009
Pencildrawing by Laurie Lipton

Pencildrawing by Laurie Lipton

One of the results of the despicable and evil custom of marrying underage girls, as young as six years old, to perverted old goats, is that the victims tend to die an early death.

Sometimes by suicide, but also by childbirth.


Last month a 12-year-old Yemeni girl, who was forced into marriage,  died during a difficult delivery in which her baby also died, a children’s rights organisation said on Sunday, demanding action to stop Yemeni men taking child brides.

“The child, Fawziya Abdullah Youssef, died on Friday September 11 in western Yemen at the age of 12 due to a complicated delivery,” the Yemeni Organisation for Childhood Protection (Seyaj) said.

This little girl suffered for three days before she died, the baby was stillborn.

“The case of Fawziya illustrates the tragedy of those whom we call ‘the brides of death’, who are little girls, less than 15 years old, forced into marriage, mostly due to financial reasons, The proportion of little girls and teenage females married before 15 is nearly 50 percent”.

The Parliament of Yemen has passed a law that would make the minimum age for girls to get wed 17.
But before the president could sign it, some of the  lawmakers requested it would be reevaluated by the parliament’s constitutional committee.
According to the lawmakers the measure is potentially Un-islamic.

They must be joking!


childbride afganistan

A family’s journey with Autism, and a cry for help!

14 10 2009

The family is Abu and Umm Sinan, they are a beautiful loving family. They have always bravely faced the many and very hard problems life has thrown at them. Their faith and love carried them through. If that wasn’t enough they are now faced with a problem they cannot solve without help.

We are not on the earth just to care for ourself. I think we are all responsible for each other, I believe we are all family and we should support each other when neseccary.

Please,help Sinan, give him a chance to live a good independent life.


I want to assure everybody I know this family, since a long time. This is a genuine family, in a genuine predicament.

In the current debate swirling around healthcare, health insurance and reform, the personal element is clearly missing. We’ve heard all of this talk about pre-existing conditions, people dropped when they get sick, caps and limits, but no one is talking about the personal side of the subject. What about the families struggling to get care or the family members who cannot get the care they need because insurance doesn’t cover it and the costs are just too high for any but the very rich to afford?

I want to present my family’s story to add that missing personal element. I am the father of a four year old child with Autism. We knew something was wrong when he turned two and still wasn’t talking so we had him evaluated and got an initial diagnosis of PDD (Pervasive Developmental Delay). This came from a county worker who was really unable to provide an official medical diagnosis but it set the stage for us to get very limited services through the county. These services consisted of two forty minute therapy sessions each week.

We took our little Sinan to the Children’s National Medical Center here in Washington DC. This first experience taught us a lot of what to expect in the future. Due to the shortage of professionals to treat children with Autism it took us six months to get an appointment. Once we did get the appointment for an initial evaluation, it was done over two separate sessions at the Children’s National Medical Center. Limits in the number of people able to give care are a huge issue, so are the costs.. We eventually got a diagnosis for Sinan of Autism with PDD.

Needless to say even with insurance, the out-of-pocket costs for getting the necessary tests are highly expensive. A series of blood tests ordered for Sinan cost more than $4,000. Every specialist you see has to evaluate the child and these charges run around $1,000 each time as well. We were then referred to a neurologist who specializes with autistic children. We were directed to have a set of blood tests performed to rule out any other possible issues and then given an appointment for a MRI to be administered.

Our out-of-pocket costs just keep building and building. The real kicker is that the only therapy shown to have a positive impact on kids with Autism is called “ABA” or Applied Behavior Analysis. The irony is that there is a glimmer of hope for austistic children with ABA therapy yet the majoriy of insurance companies will not cover this treatment. There are a few states which mandate ABA coverage by law, but not many and unfortunately our state is among those which does not.

I have never asked anyone for help before. My pride normally would keep me from doing so, but when it comes to our little boy with the big smile whom we love dearly, as a parent you have to throw your pride out the window and do what is best for your children. Sinan turned 4 in June and still isn’t talking. It puts me in tears to know I cannot give him what he needs. Any parent out there knows what I mean.

Our insurance doesn’t cover the one therapy that is almost universally recognized to help kids with special needs. We had an IEP(Individualized Education program) meeting with our son’s pre-school teacher and she was telling us she feels Sinan is pretty much on the severe side of the spectrum when it comes to Autism. We don’t think he is, but without him being verbal there is no real way to tell.

This is why we are turning to you, the public, to assist us in giving our son what he needs to help him live a fruitful and productive life. When you look at the costs it is clear that unless you are securely financially stable it is outside your means. One local service, called the “Autism Learning Center” charges $2,400 to $3,100 a month, this giving the child at least three hours of ABA therapy a day. That is a price that the majority of Americans can not afford even with health insurance coverage.

Even though I work two jobs, sometimes 70 hours a week, we have been unable to afford the monthly costs of the Autism Learning Center. My wife is unable to work because the children are too young to be in a full day school program and day care costs are exorbitant, especially in our area, never mind for children with special needs. We haven’t been able to cover past medical bills for Sinan, let alone provide him the therapy he needs to unlock the little guy we know is in there.

We are doing everything we can to get Sinan what he needs but we’ll never be able to cover these sorts of costs. This is where we put our pride aside and are asking for help to get Sinan ABA therapy. It is an ongoing process and he might need it for years, but the years before age 6 are crucial and if he is ever going to be able to talk and function he needs ABA therapy now.

I ask everyone to give what they can. Some people, who are blessed with a lot, can give a lot, others like ourselves who might not have a lot or have a lot on their plates can only give a little. Everything will help to provide Sinan the therapy he deserves.

If you are able to we sincerely ask for your help. If we get enough to start him on therapy we will record some of the sessions and add them here for you to see what your help is doing for him. We plan for the blog to kind of become a timeline, a history of Sinan’s fight against Autism and the progress he makes, along with issues that we have as a family.

We have included a “Pay Pal” button for you to contribute to Sinan’s therapy costs. Without help from donors, we do not see how we can afford Sinan’s therapy while the window of hope remains open to treat him during these most critical years.

Thank you so much for your help.

Here is a video of Sinan at his pre-school. Like many kids with Autism he has issues food and feeding. One of many issues that ABA therapy would help address.