"Five Bucks" Bill is alive and well!
Above photo (Left to right): Bill’s wife, Rhonda, and daughter, Sarah.
I got the below e-mail from Bill:
I am IMPRESSED you are doing what you set out to do- and pumped to see it Nov 15th- (my Bday).
I'll answer your questions as they come to mind:
I actually attended 2 years at SVA. Why did I leave? Well, for several reasons. I was homesick and girlfriend sick- yes I married her. I also wanted to do more academic studies as well. I've always been a real manic right brain/ left brain guy. So I came back to Oklahoma, married my high school sweetheart, went to the University of Oklahoma and became a mechanical engineer.
Now the job I do is different from most engineers. I fell in with some professors doing forensic engineering; examining accidents and failed equipment and testifying in court. So I'm an expert witness. I've been doing it for about 16 years now. I started my own consulting firm 8 years ago. The stories are almost always tragic, and I am called by client lawyers to investigate. My reward for all my work is to be locked in a room for 3-6 hours sparring with an opposing lawyer, whose livelihood at that moment amounts to attacking everything I have to say and running my credentials through the mud. You get the picture. But really I enjoy that part the most sometimes. Being my own boss of course means no structure, every day is a new adventure- the artist existence essentially.
We live in Norman, OK. We are both into cooking and dining in a big way. We pull out all the stops every Saturday night. We have eaten our way through New Orleans, San Francisco, London, Rome and Paris on various vacations.
I also love racing cars with the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) whenever I have a sports car- which I do at the moment. That happens about once a month in large parking lots with cones. It's called autocross.
As for art, I belong to a local group of visual artists and create work for shows we do. It's called 5 to 9. I do oils on board, photography, and assemblages.
I am active in my local Catholic church and am a Knight of Columbus there. Sarah goes to Catholic school.
I like reading history- Churchill's six volumes about World War II, and Julia Child's memoir are recent.
I listen to a variety of stuff- country, alternative, blues, and lately Spanish guitar pieces.
As I mentioned, I've been married to the sweetheart for 18 years, my daughter is 4 and my son will be born any day now.
Now for some questions to you:
-where are you?
-what is PIC?
-what have you all been doing all these years?
I will send pics of me and some art work in the next email.
Above photo (Left to right): Pro, Al, and Bill stop by New York’s Parson’s School of Design. Why? I have no idea, either. School year 1985-86.
Now, to address some of Bill’s questions:
Bill: Where are you?
Al: I’m living about sixty miles North of Manhattan.
Above photo: A Polaroid of P.I.C. while living at Sloane House. (clockwise) Sean, Miguel, Al, Scan, and Pro. School year 1986-1987.
Bill: What is PIC?
Al: Yeah, you weren’t around by the time that we named our group. We named our band of friends "P.I.C." after Scan came home to the dorm carrying the famous P.I.C. sign. He had found the sign in the trash outside a movie theater that had finished showing the film 52 PICK UP. One day, around 1993, we decided to put their genius and artistic talent to good use and formed P.I.C. TOONS STUDIOS. We published some comics, made an animated short, and even produced a small music cd.
Bill: What have you all been doing all these years?
Al: I have been working in graphic design, animation, and comics. I am a comic book inker for DC Comics and Archie Comic Publications. Plus, I self-publish my own comics and write for BACK ISSUE magazine. I’m active in my church, Cornerstone Baptist Church.
Above photo: Al with the famous P.I.C. sign. 1998.