Heiser Christmas Letter 1998

Merry Christmas from the Heisers! School got off to a slow start this Fall. For the first two weeks, my classroom couldn't be used because they were still installing air conditioning ducts. Teaching is rewarding, but I will be happy to retire in three years. Loretta is giving cello lessons every other week now, and has just finished a benefit concert with her string quartet. Last August, she enjoyed following the Pony Express trail through Wyoming on horseback with two girlfriends.

Working at the Palace

For the past year, I have been volunteering every Saturday at the spectacular Getty Museum. It is a thrill to work in such a beautiful and elegant environment. Stimulating visitors come here from all over the world. The <digitalExperience>, where I work, is a room full of computers connected to the Internet, where we show people how to find art on the World Wide Web. Two museums in San Francisco have put 70,000 pictures online. Mark Harden, an art director from San Antonio, has scanned thousands of pictures from art books and makes them available for free. Every large museum in the world is online or soon will be. After four hours of work, I spend the rest of the day visiting the art galleries or studying art. I always have my Olympus digital camera with me, and take many (handheld!) photos inside and out at the Getty Center. Some of them are shown on my web page.

I've learned how to be a reference librarian on the Internet, and have learned about artists and art history. Specifically, Maya hieroglyphics and art have always fascinated me. My pursuit of Maya images led me to the Getty research library, and teacher resource center. Unfortunately, the <digitalExperience> lost its lease, and is being replaced with an art exhibit. I definitely want to stay connected to the Getty, and to help people use the Internet.


I love my new digital camera. With reusable memory cartridges, I can take pictures liberally without "wasting" film. Using Photoshop and Intellihance, I can sharpen, balance, retouch and crop pictures. I like connecting pictures into panoramas, and superimposing photos of art objects to compare them. Aligning these pictures is harder than it looks, so I'm learning how to reshape pictures to make them fit together perfectly.

We wish you the happiest New Year!

Love and Peace! Dick and Loretta