This site showcases the (mostly) digital work of Andrew DiFiore from both Virtual Arts Studios and answerYES Interactive as well as random thoughts and experimental projects too volatile to be contained anywhere else.

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    The Presbyterian AIDS Network (PAN) came into existence in 1989 by the Presbyterian Church to raise awareness of HIV/AIDS and help people who felt isolated within the church because they were infected and/or affected by this disease. PAN has two main ways of accomplishing its work. First, by networking with others throughout the country, connecting people doing HIV/AIDS ministry. Second, by providing resources for education, worship, and pastoral care; by providing information through conferences, workshops, and new media.

    Though not a member of the Presbyterian Church, I was asked to donate my time in creating the official PAN website due to my past work with nonprofits. At least once a year, I will offer up my services to a worthy cause pro bono. Since I have friends and colleagues whom have been affected by this terrible disease, I didn’t have to think long when PAN asked for help.

    {Ed. Note 5/3/08: It appears that PAN has run its course and the site was recently removed. Actually, updates ceased sometime in 2005 so most likely the domain name expired and has been released back into the wild.}

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    For my nephew Jason’s Bar Mitzvah the theme was music (since he was big into the piano) and he wanted to give out a CD as a party favor. Took photos of him dressed up, playing at the piano, and created the CD cover and packaging (his dad did the pressing of the actual CDs). We got a little irreverent with the copy. Happy Birthday Jason!

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    I knew my father-in-law Arnold A. Piskin was a B-24 bomber pilot during WWII but he never cared to speak of his time in the Army Air Forces even to his children. He never talked about it, that is, until he returned from the 50th reunion of the 2nd Air Division in Norwich, England. Suddenly, he was telling his war stories to us, to his grandchildren, to strangers at the pool, to anybody who would listen. I consider Arnold a living hero and hearing his stories is what inspired this labor of love.

    In 1999 my wife and I quit our jobs to travel cross-country (if you really want to see all of this great land, nothing quite like seeing it by car). In between camping, hiking, and cycling, we made a point to visit member’s of Arnold’s crew who were still alive. From Don Shannon (engineer) in Kent, WA, to Joe Zanella (co-pilot) in Hollister, CA, we are grateful for their hospitality as much as the opportunity to hear their stories.

    It took a couple of years but the result is this documentary website dedicated to Arnold and the crew of the B-24J Liberator named Howling Banshee.

    The Howling Banshee flew 36 combat missions over France and Germany as part of the European Theater of Operations under the 8th Air Force, including a top-secret mission for the new radio-controlled AZON bomb. There are over 50 pages of original content and we expect to continue adding more.

    For the men and women who serve our country, who serve to protect our freedom we so easily take for granted, no words can adequately express our gratitude but they are all heroes and may we never falter in honoring them as such.

    {Ed. Note 1/18/04: For Arnold’s 80th birthday I created this special interactive birthday card featuring wartime memorabilia and music performed by the Glenn Miller Army Air Force Band (one of Arnold’s favorites). }

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