Introducing Our New Graphics-Design Artist: Rob Baker
And then there were—16! How good a memory do you have? Can you remember something for a whole week? Two weeks? Three weeks? An entire month? Well, if your answer was “an entire month,” then you will recall how, last month in this space, I began my “Note from the Editor” with these words: “The growth at A.P. never stops!”
Truer words were never spoken (or should I say, written?). And as proof of my point, I would like to introduce you to yet another new employee at Apologetics Press.
A little over a year ago, in my August 2003 “Note from the Editor,” I announced that we had just hired Thomas Tarpley as our new scientific illustrator. I had known Thomas since he was a sixth grader in Chattanooga, Tennessee. He “grew up well,” as they say, and distinguished himself as an artist who specializes in the delicate and complicated illustrations that are required for a variety of scientific publications (ours included!). Thomas did his graduate work in scientific illustration at the prestigious University of California Santa Cruz campus (which accepts a mere ten students a year into its program in this area), and served his internship at the vaunted American Museum of Natural History in New York City. Hiring someone as talented as Thomas was a real coup for our work, as far as my staff and I were concerned.
But the growth at A.P. never stops! Hiring Thomas isn’t the only coup we’ve pulled off lately. Several months ago, it became apparent to me that in addition to a scientific illustrator, we also needed a graphics-design artist. Thomas’ amazing ability allows him to be able to provide us with intricate drawings of things like cross sections of skin, the design of the human ear, how a fragile feather can help lift a bird into the sky, and so on. But once we began to fully utilize all of Thomas’ incredible talent, we realized that we also had a serious need for someone who could help us in other areas, such as preparing less-technical illustrations for Discovery (our monthly magazine on Scripture and science for kids), drawing items for our Explorer Series for young people, making cartoons for our tracts for children, illustrating the Discovery Web site, etc.
And I knew just the man for the job—Rob Baker. Rob holds three earned degrees [a B.S. in biology (with a minor in chemistry), a B.A. in art (with a minor in Bible), and an M.Ed.] from Freed-Hardeman University. Not coincidentally, he is a close personal friend of two of my staff members, Kyle Butt and Eric Lyons. In fact, it was through Kyle and Eric that I first became acquainted with Rob and his wife Mallory, and their baby daughter Emma.
Therefore, several months ago, I approached Rob to see if he might be interested in coming to work at Apologetics Press. Little did I know at the time that he had that very thing in mind as a sort of “life’s goal.” So, I offered Rob the position as our new graphics-design artist. He accepted, and on Wednesday, September 1, Rob officially began his employment with us in that capacity. And what a blessing he has turned out to be—just in the one short month he has been with us. As with Thomas, Rob has “spoiled” us. We now have the in-house capability of being able to walk into Thomas’ office to “order up” an in-depth drawing of the respiratory system, or to step next door into Rob’s office to request a drawing of a cartoon character to illustrate a new children’s book. How impressive is that?!
Who would have thought—twenty-five years ago when A.P. first began—that it eventually would grow into this? Not I. But it has. And I am honored to work side by side on a daily basis with faithful Christians who are, quite simply, “the best”—the best employees, and the best friends. And then there were 16!