Education

Why Illustrator Rhode Montijo Still Visits His Art Teacher, 28 Years After High School

Illustrator Rhode Montijo graduated from Tokay High School in 1991. He still visits his art teacher Floyd Nordwick, whenever he's in Northern California.
Illustrator Rhode Montijo graduated from Tokay High School in 1991. He still visits his art teacher Floyd Nordwick, whenever he's in Northern California.
Sabrina Sanchez for KPCC

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Rhode Montijo writes and illustrates children’s books, and he was a co-creator of the online animated series Happy Tree Friends.

But before all of that, he was in Floyd Nordwick’s art classes at Tokay High School in Lodi. He graduated in 1991. 

Montijo, who now lives in Southern California, saw we were reuniting artists with their teachers, and wrote in to tell us about Nordwick:

I was the first in my family to go to college. I still keep in contact with Floyd and see him whenever I’m back home for the holidays. We talk about art, I send him my books, and he even gave me advice of what to look for in my partner before I married ... Floyd saw something in me and changed my life-  I can’t thank him enough.

We tagged along as Montijo visited Mr. Nordwick's home. Listen to their conversation by pressing the bright blue play button in the upper left hand corner. 

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This activity is supported in part by the California Arts Council, a state agency. Learn more at www.arts.ca.gov.

Featured music by Tri-Tachyon and ValentinSosnitskiy.