VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WVEC) --- At the age of 88, Bill Zobel is living out a passion that started when he was in the third grade.

“I did things on the blackboard for the class,” he said.

Sketches turned into watercolors, and watercolors turned into acrylics.

Now retired from the Navy where he reached the rank of Rear Admiral, Bill can devote much more time to painting.

His name is on more than a thousand original pieces, and many of them hang in his home at Westminster Canterbury on the Chesapeake Bay.

This year he was commissioned to paint the Christmas card for the entire retirement community.

Westminster Canterbury will hand out close to 1,000 of his cards over the holidays.

“I was happy with it,” Bill said. “Fortunately, they are too.”