Portrait of Jim


In the portrait, Jim stands by his twin engine Mitsubishi MU2 with Garrett TPE331 engines, each capable of producing 800 horsepower thrust. The aircraft had max range of 1,200 mile, which made the robust aircraft perfect for plenteous cross country trips.

Jim flew cross-country hundreds of times. Jim had flown all over the United States and had flown several cross-country trips because he had “a lot of friends that lived all over the place and went to visit them.”

Jim was flying general aviation for 30 years. He got into it because his father had a Beechcraft Bonanza.

 

MU-2 parked and Jim doing a walk around

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Kellie


In this photograph, Kelly ponders her collectible card game named Magic the Gathering at Battlegrounds Computer & Tabletop Games in Lancaster, California, USA.

Kellie’s interest in these magic cards was inspired by her previous boyfriend. She studied the techniques on her own and then walked into the store, Battlegrounds, where she found a mentor to teach her how to play correctly.

Kellie was originally from Savannah, Georgia, USA and moved to Antelope Valley about the time she went to high school.

Kellie graduated from Desert High School, Edwards, California, attended Antelope Valley College (AVC). At the time that we met, she was planning to attend California State University(CSUB) at Bakersfield to major in biology.

Some of the Cards up close

Gorgeous Artwork

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Gary-3


Gary was playing the banjo for over 50 years. He got started playing the banjo because of the Andy Griffith Show, The Beverly Hillbillies, and the Glen Campbell Show (they all had banjos in them) and, at the time, he perceived the sound as “very intriguing.” He played the guitar and found learning to play the banjo “enlightening.”

Gary  tried to transition on his own, “of course that’s what people do, then you start from the beginning . It’s exciting to learn the right way.” Gary noted that it was difficult going from guitar to banjo because “you couldn’t just take your guitar skills and carry them over to the banjo. It’s a completely new instrument.”

Gary used to give banjo lessons but didn’t at the time of this interview. Gary also played the ukulele which he picked up in the same way that he picked up the banjo, that is, by seeing it on television and finding it intriguing.

Gary’s banjo was a Gibson and made in Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA. His previous banjo was made in Georgia and his banjo prior to that was made in Long Beach, California, USA.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Rani


Rani had been a member of the military, in United States Air Force, Security Forces, for seven months when I met her. She joined because the military would help pay for her college and she would receive benefits that the military offered.

Rani was originally from the Bay Area , California. She was interested in studying business when she went to college because she aspired to manage her own business.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Larry


Larry was originally from Los Angeles, California, USA and at the time of this interview, was living and working construction in Antelope Valley, California. He did not have a specialization in this field and was happy to work at any task at which he could be assistance.

Larry was in construction for about five years and got into construction because he saw that his family, specifically his father and uncles, were in that field.

Larry was working on a building that had been completely burnt up on the inside, and very much destroyed on the outside. It had to be totally torn down, and Larry said, “it’s very cool getting to see something like this and then building it from the ground up. It’s very exciting.”

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Allen


When I met Allen, he was living in Rosamond, California, USA, for seven years, but stated that he had been living in the home where the portrait was made for two and a half years. He and his wife loved it in Rosamond, more than living in West Palmdale, California and they “can’t live imagine living anywhere else.”

Allen was a teacher at Bethel Christian School in Lancaster, California who taught seventh grade English, Junior High World History, and Junior High and High School drama. But when he wasn’t working, such as during summer vacation, he was diligently getting his yard in shape.

Allen was a teacher for twelve years, but not all at Lancaster Christian School. He had taught at Pinecrest in Palmdale before it closed down and at Antelope Valley Christian School before it too closed down.

Through no coordinated effort, Allen’s baby brother also grew a beard and and was also getting gray hair. When Allen looked at the portrait, he saw a very strong resemblance between the picture he saw and a recent picture of his brother. That was a bit shocking to Allen.

Allen and his brother were originally from Midvale, Idaho, USA which is about 100 miles north of Boise, the capital of Idaho.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Rosa


I have to say that Rosa was the most exuberantly, friendly person that I have made a portrait of and interviewed. She loved people so much that she had fun helping and talking to me. It was exciting to be around her because of her loveliness.

Rosa worked at Bed Bath and Beyond and had been there for three years. “I like to work with people, see new people and to service people.”

Rosa also loved to shop at Bed Bath and Beyond because “I love my house and I love to decorate it.”

Rosa was originally from Guatemala City, Guatemala. She moved to the United States about 15 years .prior to our interview, specifically to Los Angeles, California, then to San Fernando, and finally to Antelope Valley where she had been living for 12 years.

Rosa aspired to one day “have my own business, my own office, and to be my own boss.”

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Bobby


Bobby was a retired professional welder who built the support structures for stages and sets in Hollywood. At the time of this interview, he was a volunteer for various foundations, including the foundation called Base 11 which restored aircraft and provided education for various aeronautical subjects;  education being primary and restoration secondary. (By having good exhibits they felt they could educate people about Aeronautics in a superior fashion.)

Bobby considered himself a creative consultant for the foundation because he found old, junk airplane parts and turned them into exhibits.  He became a member of the foundation because he repaired a personal airplane for a member of the foundation, and after that, the member encouraged him to join the foundation.

Below, you see a wing tank from a B-52 which Bobby was turning into an exhibit. The exhibit was to look like a rocket into which children could climb, don a virtual reality headset, and then virtually fly to the moon. Also below you see the fins, the head cone, the body and the hole that kids would climb through to enter the exhibit.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Angelo


Angelo was a radiologist who had been practicing for 6 years and had been working at White Memorial for a year. His favorite specialty in the field was making X-rays and that’s what he did every day. “I just like to help people get better,” was why he chose this field.

Angelo was born and raised in Los Angeles and went to  Daniel Murphy Catholic High School and Pasadena City College.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Paul-2


Paul was a seventeen-year-old who had just graduated from Quartz Hill High School and was planning to attend Antelope Valley College in the fall to study in their Airframe & Powerplant program.

After graduating from community college, Paul hoped to get a job “at Northrop Grumman Corporation or one of the other local airplane manufacturing companies.” He wanted to be an mechanic and “maybe even an engineer,” in which case he would attend either UCLA or or Cal Poly after completing an Associate’s Degree.

In this picture, Paul studies the engine of a restored Cessna 190 historical aircraft. The twin engine Cessna 190 was built in 1947 with  “Shakey Jake” 300 horsepower Jacobs supercharged, just carbureted engines.

All this fascinated Paul because he was originally from Antelope Valley and grew up watching airplanes and the intense quest for innovative aircraft research, technology and manufacturing that transpires in the area.

 

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.