Related Works:
Writings, Theater and Films

"I believe the pen is mightier than the brush because you can't bullshit your way out of a bad writing like many do from a really bad painting."

John Rivera-Resto

Spring 2020
"My greatest pleasure in life"

This catalog is divided into two sections. The first one is a selection of some of my writings: a play, an essay, a couple of scenes from a screenplay, and a journal. The second section has to do with visual arts and other projects related to theater and film.

On the whole, I enjoy writing more than painting, which I consider an extension of my writing. The type of writing I enjoy the most is the expository, because I like to inform or explain the subject of creating art to people. But my exposition touches on the descriptive, because I tend to paint a mental picture for the reader using the five senses. And lastly, my expositions tend to be narrative, because I use the framework of a story that has a beginning , a middle, and an end.

The type of writing I do not enjoy doing, is the persuasive kind, even though the second part of the essay included in this collection, does precisely that. Persuasive writing is where I state my opinion in an attempt to influence you -the reader. Doing so takes a lot out of you, and I don't have the patience to be that persistent. But oddly enough, I do tend to be more persuasive in some of my murals, because I create them with an intention in mind.

Many have asked me what makes a good writer. For me the answer is obvious: you have to be a good reader. This is your workout for the brain. It will improve your memory, expand your vocabulary, and equip you with knowledge. It will also make you a good painter. It's really sad when I encounter too many artists who pride themselves on being too busy with painting to read a book. Idiots and fools!

james levin and volunteers in the 1980s

I greatly enjoy doing research for all my projects. Especially when Charlie, one of my two adorable Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, keeps me company while he enjoys his afternoon nap. Happy, his older brother, likes to take his nap on a comfy pillow under my desk. (2020 photograph).

The next thing after reading that will make you a good writer or a good painter, is to be observant and analytical of everything. Being observant gets you data -facts; being analytical will help you draw conclusions from the data you have adquire. This will make you a freethinker -and this is what will separate you from the "herd mentality". Being a freethinker is the quality that has defined great writers and artists. So, if you want to learn how to be great at what you do, pick up a book! That's the starting line.

I began writing little poems and stories when I was about 12. I picked up the habit at school in Puerto Rico. You had to read lots of literature and poetry and then discuss what you read in class, doing group exercises or oral reports. Education was highly valued. And I loved books! I read anything and everything. I even read or tried to read books in other languages (like English, French or Italian) with the help of dictionaries. Of course, illustrations and photographs helped a lot.

As of this writing, I'm 61, and the joy of reading is as great as it ever was. My mind never stops sponging and I'm very grateful for it. Learning has been and continues to be my greatest pleasure in life! I hope you enjoy my writings.

The Writings

Theater and Film Related


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