April 27, 2017

Pakistan’s Ali a doubt for Sabina Park Test

aliA groin injury has put Pakistan seamer Hasan Ali in doubt for the opening Test of the three-match series against West Indies bowling off in Kingston on Friday.

The 23-year-old, who is yet to make his Test debut, picked up the injury during last weekend’s three-day four game against the WICB President’s XI and is yet to recover.

The Pakistan Cricket Board said the player would undergo rehabilitation in an attempt to return to full fitness quickly.

“On clinical assessment there is strain to one of his adductor muscles. He will undergo progressive rehabilitation to regain strength in the groin,’ the PCB statement said.

“Currently, we are confident that he will recover in time to be able to play in the Test series against West Indies. We will continue review his situation as he progresses through rehabilitation stages and give an update later when we are satisfied with his successful recovery or progress.”

Ali was expected to be a shoo-in for the first Test after impressive performances in the preceding limited overs series. He was especially outstanding in the opening one-dayer with a five-wicket haul.

The right-armer sent down 27 overs in the first innings of the tour game but did not bowl in the President’s XI second innings.

He has taken 29 wickets in 16 one-dayers and 10 wickets in seven Twenty20 Internationals. (CMC)

 

Allen, Walton fail to prevent Scorpions defeat

…Red Force beat Hurricanes by innings and 17 runs

(CMC)

Fabian Allen

Fabian Allen

Not even a stunning half-century from rookie Fabian Allen could prevent Jamaica Scorpions from a sudden collapse as they crashed to a 26-run defeat to Barbados Pride in their final match of the regional four-day championship here (Barbados) yesterday.

Starting the final day at Kensington Oval on 114 for one in pursuit of 341 for victory, Scorpions were dismissed for 314, in the second session after suffering a swift lower-order meltdown.

Chadwick Walton, unbeaten on 70 overnight, made 93, while Trevon Griffith, who started the day on 25, made 53.

Allen, in only his fourth first-class game, smashed an entertaining 60 off 35 deliveries and Test batsman Jermaine Blackwood chimed in with 44.

Scorpions reached lunch on 241 for five — with another 100 runs required in the final two sessions of the contest.

But Test left-arm spinner Jomel Warrican claimed five for 87 and veteran spinner Sulieman Benn, also a left-armer, picked up three for 90 as Scorpions lost their last five wickets for 73 runs.

The defeat for Scorpions was their fifth of the campaign and their fourth in five outings in the latter half of the competition, after leading at the mid-season break.

Starting the day in control of the run chase, Walton and Griffith extended their second-wicket stand to 137 before being separated.

Scorpions were increasing their stranglehold on the game when Grifftih swung Warrican to Ashley Nurse at mid-on at 162 for two. Just inside the hour mark, Walton perished with his fifth first-class century in sight, superbly taken at short leg by Kyle Corbin off off-spinner Kenroy Williams.

All told, Walton faced 181 deliveries in a shade over 3-1/4 hours at the crease and counted seven fours and four sixes.

Scenting a way back, Pride claimed Paul Palmer cheaply for five to a juggling catch at leg slip by Jonathan Carter off Warrican as Scorpions slumped to 176 for four.

Blackwood and the experienced Devon Thomas then came together to steady the innings in a 65-run, fifth wicket stand which seemed to carrying Scorpions safely to the break.

But Blackwood fell on the stroke of lunch, when he edged Benn to Nurse at slip at 241 for five, after he had struck three fours and six in a breezy 66-ball knock.

It all went haywire for Scorpions after lunch, with three wickets tumbling for five runs in the space of 20 balls to leave Scorpions on the verge of defeat at 251 for eight.

However, Allen brandished his bat to good effect, blasting three fours and six sixes to rally the innings and give Scorpions hope.

He put on a vital 44 for the ninth wicket with Captain Nikita Miller (4), which rattled Pride before Warrican had Miller caught at slip by Benn.

Allen’s last-ditch effort ended when he holed out to Kevin Stoute at cover off Warrican.

In another game in St Kitts capital of Basseterre, Trinidad and Tobago Red Force defeated Leeward Islands Hurricanes by an innings and 17 runs on the final day of their match.

Scores: RED FORCE 533 (Yannic Cariah 196, Tion Webster 109, Amir Jangoo 46, Ewart Nicholson 45, Akiel Cooper 41, Isaiah Rajah 40, Marlon Richards 24; Jason Campbell 3-100, Jeremiah Louis 2-90, Gavin Tonge 2-113); HURRICANES 299 (Chesney Hughes 71, Montcin Hodge 64, Akeem Saunders 27, Kacey Carty 53, Jacques Taylor 27; Imran Khan 5-66, Roshon Primus 2-62) and 237 (Montcin Hodge 96 not out, Kacey Carty 54, Akeem Saunders 41; Imran Khan 6-74, Bryan Charles 3-110).

 

Seaton, Winter show impressive signs at CARIFTA

Jamaica breast stroke Olympic gold medallist Alia Atkinson (left) strike a pose with back row  from left: Daniel Scott, Alex Winter and chaperone Shonette Winter; middle row are Lian Winter and Leon Seaton Jr while coach Shefetah Tzedeq is stooping

Jamaica breast stroke Olympic gold medallist Alia Atkinson (left) strike a pose with back row from left: Daniel Scott, Alex Winter and chaperone Shonette Winter; middle row are Lian Winter and Leon Seaton Jr while coach Shefetah Tzedeq is stooping

National swimmers Leon Seaton and Lian Winter may have missed the podium after their events at the just concluded CARIFTA Championships which were held in the Bahamas from April 15 to 19 but have gained invaluable experience.

Seaton, had qualified for six events but only swam four where he made it to the finals on three occasions. In the 200M freestyle the 13 year-old entered the preliminary rounds with a time of 2:21.30s but during the final he clocked 2:17.49s which was only good enough for eighth place. He had a time of 2:17.09s to place seventh in the preliminary race.

In the 100M freestyle, he got fifth place, his highest placement in a final, in a time of 1:01.58s. He was expecting a much better showing in the final having stopped the clock at 1:00.39s during the preliminary rounds.

Likewise the 50M freestyle, a time of 27.46s gave him eighth place.  The other event he participated in was the 50M butterfly but only could not qualify for the finals with a time of 30.28s.

On the other hand, Winter got to three finals of the six events that she competed in, with her highest placement being eighth with a time of 32.79s in the 50M butterfly. The 100M Backstroke (1:22.57s) and 200M butterfly (3:00.98s) gave her 18th and 12th respectively.

The athletes returned home on Wednesday evening and are expect to the pool where they will endure rigorous training ahead of Goodwill Games that are set for August.

 

Need to capitalise on diplomatic ties – GTTA President

By Akeem Greene

GTTA President Godfrey Munroe

GTTA President Godfrey Munroe

President of the Guyana Table Tennis Association (GTTA) Godfrey Munroe is of the firm opinion that to help develop the sport, the relevant stakeholders must seek to capitalise on their diplomatic ties in an effort to give players the opportunity to garner more international exposure.

“It is using diplomatic relationships with key countries and we are working with Director of Sport [Christopher Jones] in this regard in getting good relations with China.” Munroe stated in an interview with Guyana Times International Sport.

His comments stems from Guyana hosting the 22nd Caribbean Region Table Tennis Federation (CRTTF) Cadet & Junior Championship at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall, where Dominican Republic were the most dominant team in both the under-15s and 18s categories, winning 12 gold, four silver and eight bronze medals while the host won three silver and seven bronze medals.

Munroe explained that  the Dominican Republic team have a  mentorship programme with China, whereby during the summer, two pre-cadet, cadet and senior players would go to China and train, while a  Chinese player/coach would visit the country to  help develop their structure, an ambition that the president endeavours for Guyana.

In addition to Guyana strengthening their bi-lateral ties, Munroe contended that  there is a need  for more support from the corporate sector, increase in  domestic tournaments, strengthening  their school programme and increasing  the amount of certified coaches.

Last year when the championships were held in the Dominican Republic, Guyana won four medals (1, gold, 1 silver & 2 bronze) with the five-member (Shemar Britton, Elishaba Johnson, Kyle Edghill and Nicholas Romain and Miguel) that they fielded.

Commenting on this year’s results, Munroe felt it allowed the association to get a gauge as to where the sport is currently.

Commendably, the competition was at a high standard but Munroe critically assessed the need the examination of the players’ mental strength and physical conditioning.

 

Australia name Pattinson, Henriques in Champions Trophy squad

James Faulkner

James Faulkner

Moises Henriques was chosen ahead of batsmen including Usman Khawaja, Pete Handscomb, George Bailey and Cameron White – plus the allrounder James Faulkner – in an Australian Champions Trophy squad that also features recalls for James Pattinson and John Hastings.

The omission of Faulkner from an Australian ICC event squad for the first time since 2011 marks a major change for the selectors, who have also determined that Henriques is worth his place for his batting alongside the likes of Marcus Stoinis and Hastings.

Khawaja and Handscomb were both part of the ODI team over the summer, and the latter’s performance with the bat suffered notably when asked to keep wicket in New Zealand in place of the injured Matthew Wade.

Chris Lynn, who injured his shoulder in the IPL this week, and Mitchell Starc have been chosen subject to fitness assessments, meaning Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Pat Cummins and Pattinson all appear in a pace-laden squad six months out from a home Ashes series.

Trevor Hohns, the chairman of the selection panel, said Australia’s medical staff would monitor the fitness of Lynn and Starc – who has been out of action since he flew home halfway through Australia’s Test series in India with a stress fracture in his right foot – and hoped both would be fit by the time the team departed on May 18.

Pattinson, who last played an ODI in September 2015, has been in roaring form since his return from a long-term injury, taking 24 wickets at 17.41 for Victoria in the Sheffield Shield and carrying that form into the County Championship for Nottinghamshire, taking 13 wickets in two matches at 12.92. His inclusion gives Australia a wealth of genuine pace options, with Hastings’ return a nod to early English summer conditions.

“Both James and John have made very good returns from injury and are bowling well for their respective teams in the English County competition as well as both contributing well with the bat,” Hohns said.

“When you also add Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins to the fast bowling artillery it becomes a very exciting proposition for Australian cricket.”

Henriques has been an irregular member of Australia’s ODI squad, playing only eight matches between his debut in 2009 and his last match in August 2016. He has scored 46 runs at 6.57 and taken six wickets with his medium-pace at 40.83.

Faulkner has greater ODI experience – 67 matches, with averages of 34.06 and 30.08 with bat and ball – and was Player of the Match in the final of the 2015 World Cup. Since then, while his left-arm seam has remained an effective weapon, his batting returns have fallen away, with his last 17 innings yielding a high score of 36 and an average of 17.40.

It is also possible that a lack of recent match practice has gone against Faulkner, who has not featured in a competitive game since playing for Tasmania against Queensland in the Sheffield Shield in early March. He is yet to play a match for his IPL team, Gujarat Lions, this season. Henriques, on the other hand, has featured in all but one of Sunrisers Hyderabad’s six matches, scoring 138 runs at an average of 46.00 and a strike rate of 127.77, and taking one wicket in 10 overs.

“Moises finished off the domestic season very well and has had a great start in the Indian Premier League,” Hohns said. “We believe Moises’ batting has improved significantly in the past six months and he will provide us with a strong option should he be selected.

“James has been a consistent performer for the one-day squad for several years, however with players such as Pattinson, Cummins and Hastings coming back to full fitness and the emergence of Marcus Stoinis, James was squeezed out of the squad and an unlucky omission.”

Stoinis and Hastings are the two other seam-bowling allrounders in Australia’s squad, with Glenn Maxwell and Travis Head providing part-time offspin back-up to Adam Zampa’s legspin. (ESPNCricinfo)

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo.

 

YWCC proud of Hetymer’s Test selection

Shimron Hetmyer

Shimron Hetmyer

Twenty year old Shimron Hetmyer’s selection to the West Indies Test squad to take on Pakistan in the Caribbean is hailed as a victory for the Young Warriors Cricket Club (YWCC), according to the club’s former President Anil Beharry.

Hetmyer and fellow Guyanese Vishaul Singh was called to be a part of the 13-man squad which will be led by Jason Holder in the Q Mobile Cup Test Series starting on Friday at Sabina Park in Kingston, Jamaica. Hetmyer and Singh’s selection came after stunning performances against the Pakistanis recently while playing for the West Indies Cricket Board President’s XI.

The left-handed batsmen gained selection to the WICB President’s XI after consistent performances for the Guyana Jaguars in the ongoing Digicel Regional Four day Tournament and on the West Indies ‘A’ team’s recent tour to Sri Lanka.

Beharry, also former President of the Berbice Cricket Board, described Hetmyer as very humble and extends his congratulations to the young cricketer. Beharry assisted in mentoring Hetmyer while he played for the YWCC in Berbice.

“I am very elated and I must say congratulation to both of them….Shimron is extremely talented and a natural born cricketer and he will definitely move to the highest level and consistently perform,” he said.

He added that Hetmyer can earn a place in the Indian Premier League (IPL) since he believes that he is capable and ready to extend his boundaries.

“From the first time I saw Hetmyer, at age 6, he was taller than his age group, supremely talented than his age group and that is why we dragged him in to the club structure…at the age of 11 he made the Berbice Under 15 team, at the 14 he made the Under 17 team and at 16 he made both Berbice and Guyana’s Under 19 team,” Beharry reminisced.

He noted that Hetmyer scored his first century at the age of 16 while representing Berbice at the Inter-County games, where he had difficulties participating since there were issues with him leaving school and as a result he had to sneak out without anyone’s knowledge. He was later selected to as a member of the Guyana Under-19 squad and later led the team at the ICC Youth World Cup.

“I just spoke to the President of the Young Warriors Cricket Club, Rafeek Hasim, and he asked me to extend his congratulations to Shimron Hetmyer and Vishaul Singh on behalf of the club,” Beharry said.

The West Indies first Test 13-man squad also sees a return for Kittitian Kieran Powell while Marlon Samuels, Leon Johnson, Darren Bravo, Carlos Brathwaite and Jomel Warrican who were part of the recent Test side were overlooked. The full squad reads; Jason Holder (Captain), Devendra Bishoo, Jermaine Blackwood, Kraigg Brathwaite, Roston Chase, Miguel Cummins, Shane Dowrich, Shannon Gabriel, Shai Hope, Alzarri Joseph.

 

Guyana secure 3 silver & 7 bronze medals

-Greaves cops lone individual medal

Team Guyana!  Seated (L-R) President of the Guyana Table Tennis Association Godfrey Munrore, Priscilla Greaves, Director of Sport Christopher Jones and Guyana Olympic Association  Charles Corbin

Team Guyana! Seated (L-R) President of the Guyana Table Tennis Association Godfrey Munrore, Priscilla Greaves, Director of Sport Christopher Jones and Guyana Olympic Association Charles Corbin

The 22nd Caribbean Region Table Tennis Federation (CRTTF) Cadet & Junior Championship came to a close on Tuesday evening at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall and the local contingent had a commendable outing at the event where they managed to bag three silver and seven bronze medals.

The success story for Guyana would have to be girls’ under-18 player Priscilla Greaves who managed to secure the country’s lone individual medal via her bronze which she shared with Cuba’s Shelly Machado.

In the overall results of the championships, Dominican Republic were rampant in both the under-15s and u-18s categories, storming to a total tally of 12 gold medals, four silver medals and eight bronze medals. Barbados (1 gold;1 bronze), Trinidad and Tobago (1 silver; 1 bronze), Aruba (2 bronze) and Cuba (2 bronze) were the other countries that earned a spot on the podium.

The team success came for Guyana in the boys under-15 doubles via silver from the combination of Jamal Nicolas and Terrance Rausche while teammates Tyriq Saunders and Isiah Layne had to share the third spot with Dominican Republic’s Steff Gutierrez and Ronaldo Tejada; Barbados pair of Ramon Maxwell and Rashon Goddard came first.

The Dominican Republic carted off the lion’s share of the awards on offer at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall on Tuesday

The Dominican Republic carted off the lion’s share of the awards on offer at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall on Tuesday

In the female section, Nevah Clarkston/Abigail Martin had to share third place with Selanas Jackman and Thuraia Thomas.

In the mixed doubles, Kaysan Ninvalle and Martin copped third along with Niran Bissu and Thomas; overall the girls team finished in second place while the boys’ A-team got third.

In the under-18s section, both the boys and the girls finished in fourth position, while Greaves and Jamaail Homer won silver in the doubles.

The other countries to participate in the five-day event were St. Lucia, Suriname and St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

 

Disappearing…

…children

Where have all the children gone?? For years and years, the Common Entrance examination, which morphed into the NGSA, was written by 16,000 or so kids. That number was pretty constant — just like our overall population. As recently as 2013, some 16,800 children between 11 and 12 years old wrote the NGSA. But every year since, the number’s been inexorably dropping: 2014 – 15,400; 2015 – 15,200; 2016 – 14,500 and this year 13,600.

What’s going on? Have 3000 kids been abducted by aliens? Has our birth rate dropped precipitously since 2002?? But this would have been felt 12 years later in 2014. Is the reduction in the numbers of children writing the NGSA related to the slow fyaah, mo’ fyaah of the PNC, which segued into gang-related political violence? Is it a case of “make war not love”? Inquiring minds want to know!!

Your Eyewitness wonders whether the explanation’s much more mundane and related to the issue that’s been exercising folks in the education sector – private schools. But as far as he knows, the private primary schools do have their kids write the NGSA, since most of their kids still want to enter the “premier” secondary schools. So, seriously, the Ministry of Education should launch an investigation into this drop in the NGSA age cohort.

But your Eyewitness was also struck at the lack of excitement that normally accompanies writing of the NGSA. Apart from Minister Rupert making some unlucky kid become even more nervous by dropping into her school and chatting with her, the coverage was pretty muted. Was it because the VAT charge on private education has everyone in that sector so het up?

But seriously, folks, the NGSA and private education are actually related. It is success or failure at the NGSA that, to a large extent, determines your life’s chances in Guyana; since the school you attend plays such a large role in determining the latter. Parents are confronted with the same question every year: If their kids didn’t make in to the top 1%, what then? Are they forever doomed to be dubbed as “failures”? After the Government denationalised the school system, private secondary schools provided another option; and not just for the wealthy, but for all concerned parents.

Then the competitive demand dropped to private primary schools, which were simply the “lessons” syndrome for 6th Graders writ large. So, while there are some rich parents fostering elitism in a couple of private schools, by and large, the VAT is punishing poor people who want better for their kids.

Rather than imposing a punitive VAT, all the Government needs to do is bring all public secondary schools to the same level as the public “premier ones”.

Voila!! Problem solved!!

…Hydro

A piece of news from the foreign section caught your Eyewitness’s eye. The state of Roraima in northern Brazil, abutting our Rupununi, is suffering from blackouts. As longsuffering consumers of the sporadic power GPL issues, you, dear reader, may ask, “What’s the big deal?”

Well, for decades, Roraima’s been supplied with electricity from the massive Guri Dam Hydro that Venezuela built in the 1960s. But with all their recent and not-so-recent troubles, the news item pointed out, with the neglect of maintenance to the transmission lines (now where’ve we heard this before??) the supply to Brazil’s Roraima will be getting worse, rather than better.

So what’s this to us? Just that when the PNC-led Government nixed Amaila Falls Hydro, they said they preferred a much larger 4000MW project in the Cuyuni basin, in which the Brazilians had expressed interest. Do they still think Brazil’s gonna put their energy-needs egg in a foreign basket? Again??

…Judicial authority

 Do you see a pattern developing? The Judiciary’s being cornered, buffeted and challenged by the Executive and the legislature it controls in their substantive competence of Constitutional interpretation.

Now new bodies like SARU and SOCU are legislatively “legitimised” to be investigators, prosecutors, judges, juries and executioners of political opponents.  Is this judicial castration?

 

Fear of flying

Satiricus always enjoyed the long Easter weekend. He always thanked the Church Fathers who decided — of all the days in the week — to pick the day on which Jesus was crucified to be a Friday. How could they know? The calendar hadn’t even been formed! Knowing that Jesus rose three days later, Easter then had to fall on a Monday. And voila!! “Good Friday” to “Easter Monday” wrapped around the weekend to give the fellas ample time to bend their elbows at the Back Street Bar!

“OK Sato! OK!” grinned Hari, as Satiricus explained the Easter weekend, “So the Church Fathers were ahead of the Americans on this ‘long weekend’ business!”

“Yeah!” enthused Bungi. “Leh abee drink to da!!”

Drinks duly downed, Satiricus asked, “Can you believe the way United treated that passenger they bumped off their flight?”

“Yes, I can believe it!” Hari immediately responded, as he signalled for another beer. “Have you even flown CaripAirlines?”

“Yeah, Sato!” said Bungi. “Dem a treat Guyanese like daag!”

“You hear that or you know that?” demanded Satiricus.

“Budday, yuh na rememba da time me bin fuh look wuk in St Lucia?” Bungi answered. “Dem CaripAirlines people na even gi’e abee wan pack nut!”

“I went with Bungi that time to show him the ropes,” revealed Hari. “The flight was delayed three hours here. We were starving!”

“An’ abee had fuh wait two hour fuh people come in a Trinidad,” continued Bungi, who was getting quite worked up. “An’ still na wan packet a nut!”

“You like nuts?” asked Satiricus.

“Na play de ass, Sato,” snapped Bungi. “Me bin hungry and de plane start fuh get hat and me start fuh cuss!”

“Bungi didn’t want people to know,” said Hari. “But they dragged him off the plane.”

“So did they beat you?” asked Satiricus solicitously.

“Naah!” said Bungi. “Dem gi’e me some doubles an’ coc’nut wata an’ seh me a de fuss Guyanese wah complain!”

 

Art as a ‘path of expression’

'Surface tension' (2016). Mixed-media on vinyl

‘Surface tension’ (2016). Mixed-media on vinyl

Overseas-based Guyanese artist Suchitra Mattai’s artwork examines the general themes of identity and globalization through landscape.

Mattai was born in Guyana and also grew up here, but migrated to the US as a child. She now lives and works in France.

The artist received an MFA in painting and drawing, and an MA in South Asian art, both from the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. She has exhibited her work in Philadelphia, New York, Washington, DC, Minneapolis, Denver, Austin, Berlin, Germany, and Wales, United Kingdom.  Her paintings have appeared in the publication “New American Paintings”. Additionally, she just completed a residency at RedLine Contemporary Art Centre, Denver.

'Clearing' (2017). Gouache and watercolour on contact paper

‘Clearing’ (2017). Gouache and watercolour on contact paper

Suchitra often appropriates found objects to create mixed-media drawings, paintings, sculpture and installations.  Her disconnected landscapes are created from history, memory, travel and pop-culture, and invert the familiar in order to complicate assumptions about race and gender.

Currently, the artist is working on a series, “El Dorado”, thinking of her homeland, Guyana, as the idealized ‘El Dorado’. Her new mixed-media work is “all about re-imagining the past”. She is presently working on creating two bodies of work.

“I am currently living in France and have access to European historical documents. I am particularly interested in the period of European colonialism.  The ‘Untitled’ piece with the ‘colonized’ woman bound by threads comments on the struggles of colonized peoples.  The woman melds into the background pattern.  This body of work investigates the position of women during this period,” Suchitra explained in an interview with Sunday Times Magazine.

Her second body of work “references landscape, particularly bodies of water and idealized places”. Suchitra pointed out that she has always been interested in the relationship of the natural world to the built environment. Hence, her artwork “Surface tension” depicts reflections of nature in a pool.  Lately, she has become “obsessed with the idea of El Dorado and the search for an idealized place or home”. Having left as a child, Guyana is now her “remote idealized homeland”.

“Art has always been a way of living for me. My father wrote in my baby journal that I only wanted to draw since I could pick up a pencil.  I have always made art. Painting and drawing have always been close to my heart.  I spent a lot of time by myself, as my sisters are much younger than me.  This time led me to internalize experiences in a peculiar way and art has proven to be the best path for me to express my thoughts and attitudes.  I also had one artist role model as a child – our family friend and a fellow Guyanese, Suresh Hanuman, was a source of inspiration,” Suchitra recalled.

Artist Suchitra Mattai

Artist Suchitra Mattai

The artist mentioned that she is the happiest when using her hands to create.  Creating not only brings her joy, but also allows her to communicate the ideas she wants to voice.

For 13 years Suchitra has taught art to university students, but chose to resign from teaching “in order to focus on making art”.  She plans to continue to pursue exhibiting her work across the globe so that she can continue to be part of “this worldwide art conversation”.

Her advice to young artists is to “follow your dreams in any way that you can, but realize that every life experience contributes to your success as an artist. Develop your technical skills, but really think about what it is that you need to say through your art. It is the marriage of form and content that produces the most amazing artwork. It took me many years to be a ‘professional artist’, but I always created art.  Initially, I studied statistics and mathematics in an effort to be practical, and then art history, but in the end I have pursued my passions. Being an artist comes with struggles and sacrifice, but the path is entirely worth it!”