Ex-Scientist Creates a Picture-Perfect Career as an Artist

After a distinguished career in the field of mathematics and science, Marvin Howard, 65, of Brentwood is living his childhood dream of becoming an artist.

Although as a youth Howard had a passion for painting and drawing, in the early 1950s his mathematical expertise led him to the field of computer science. He became a pioneer in the business applications of computer science, which included developing scientific programs for the government and the private sector.

"I was happy not painting because the involvement with these vast computer projects made me forget about my artistic endeavors," he said.

But on his lunch hour about 10 years ago, a watercolor art exhibit in a bank building inspired him once more.

In 1983, he retired from the world of science and began to pursue a second career as an artist.

He has won a number of awards in his short art career, including first place in the 1987 National Landscape Painting Competition. He also was one of 100 finalists in the 1988 and 1989 Arts for the Parks competitions sponsored by the National Parks Academy of the Arts.

Howard and his wife have traveled throughout Hawaii, New England and the Southwest taking photographs for his paintings.

His realistic work is mainly in black and white, although "now I'm also using color to add another aspect to my work," he said.

A collection of his works is being displayed through Nov. 30 in the gallery of the library at El Camino College in Torrance.

Tung H. Lin of Pacific Palisades, a UCLA professor emeritus of civil engineering, has been elected to the National Academy of Engineering, one of the highest professional distinctions accorded an engineer.

A member of the UCLA faculty since 1955, Lin was recognized for his pioneering development of micromechanical theories of plasticity, creep and fatigue crack initiation, as well as major contributions to inelastic structure analysis.

A number of local high school students have been awarded the Rensselaer Medal by Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y.

They are Jennifer Keen of Palisades High School, Daniel Lee of Harvard School, Ai-Lan Wang of Culver City High School, Julian Jami of Beverly Hills High School and Janet Yu of Santa Monica High.

Each year, Rensselaer presents the award to high school juniors for outstanding achievements in mathematics and science.

Irma Colen was selected as Outstanding Volunteer for the 1990 Los Angeles Celebration of National Philanthropy Day.

Colen, a longtime supporter of the Venice Family Clinic, was honored at a breakfast Nov. 15 at the Westin Bonaventure Hotel in Los Angeles.

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