Monday, December 29, 2008

Doña M.

Doña M. 20" x 28" Transparent Watercolor

Phew! I worked up a sweat on this one! Finally it's done and I like the results! I had really wanted to call this "What wuz I thinking!" because the dress was a lot of work! Trying to make sure the black was not flat but not too contrasting and still a part of the overall area.

I had been wanting to paint Doña M. for a few years now. When I first met her I thought what a beautiful person, her smile was angelic, her walk was deliberate and respectful. Then I heard her speak with a voice that was course and tough and I liked her even more. I've found that with traditional people, the tougher they are, the more compassionate the are.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Just finishing the final touches

I'm really pleased with the way this one is turning out although I need to be careful not to over do it now. It's easy to overwork things isn't it? !

This is one of the first in a new series I've started called "Healers, Dreamers, Travelers" People who have that magic about them, their touch healing, their stories intriguing and their nature, spiritual.

Monday, December 15, 2008

California Watercolor Association's 40th Annual


I just recieved notice today that my painting "Yellow Hammer" has been accepted into the CWA's 40th Annual Exhibition! I am very honored to have been chosen as these national exhibitions are tough to get into and very proud to be a part of what I'm sure will be an outstanding exhibition.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Challenge ! ! ! ! !

I met the amazing watercolor artist Chris Beck a little while ago on Brushspace and have been enjoying becoming cyber friends since then. Chris actually lives not toooo far from me and after a while of emailing and sharing our respect for watercolor thought it would be a good idea to do a "challenge" in order to increase the visibility of watercolor in the world of art blogs. So here's the first of what I think will be some exciting and fun blog posts. The inspiration was something from the kitchen.

"This Little Piggy Went To Market" 8"x10" Transparent Watercolor
(by yours truly)

"Sliced With Salt" 6"x6"
Watercolor & Gouache by Chris Beck

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Happy Birthday!

OK, she's going to kill me for posting these pics here but I just had to write a special Happy Birthday note.

Truly I've been trying to summon the right words for this very special lady and find myself speechless. The only words that keep resounding in my mind are compassionate, loving, healing, strong willed, and uniquely gifted, talented spirit.

This world (and my world) is infinitely better for you being here.

Saturday, November 22, 2008


These are toys I had as a kid in Mexico. The object is to hold the stick part and swing the barrel part to land onto the stick. If you were good at it, you could do it in one swing, if you weren't, you'd have sore knuckles for days! My knuckles were usually bruised.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008



I'm not sure what to call this one, I really love the textures and earthy colors in the more traditional Mexican ceramics. It was fun pulling out the hints of colors I saw. I have been wanting to paint this tri-footed pot but could never quite figure out how to compose it, there's more of this one in the works.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

It's My Bloggiversary!

I completely forgot! A year ago on Oct. 17th I posted "Dancing At Kule Loklo" to introduce myself to the Bloggosphere. It's no secret that I didn't know what I was doing or getting myself into but I have to say that I'm more comfortable working in cyberspace now and more importantly, I've met lots of cyber friends. It has been terrific connecting with so many artists and on the days when I have no reserves to keep going with my art, I get rejuvenated and inspired by all of your artwork and kind words.
So here's a cyber toast. . . . . To every happiness ~ visually, musically, spiritually, health-illy ~
Many Blessings past and present and many more to come.
Here's a sneak peak at one of the ten paintings I'm currently working on.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Wonder Twins!

Happy 6th Birthday! ! ! ! ! ! !

Six years and nine months ago when the doctor stunned us with the news about having twins, we were very quiet at first, then we laughed and we haven't stopped enjoying that laughter since. Eric and Lily are sometimes wonder twins, sometimes blunder twins and always twins full of spirit and kindness and are a constant source of love (and entertainment!)

Monday, October 6, 2008

Solo Show Success

Since this was my first solo show, I didn't know what to expect and kind of worried that not too many people would come but I was pleasantly surprised and relieved that it was a great turn out. I was a little overwhelmed but truly enjoyed meeting so many great people. I appreciate all the positive feedback and was a great feeling to notice how everyone responded to different paintings. I think part of being an artist is when you're working, to dig deep within you and create something worth looking at or feeling from or responding to and then to send it out into the world for others to be a part of that creation.

I have to thank everyone at the Lynn House Gallery for all your hard work and allowing me to show my work and share pieces of my spirit, and to the folks at GATO for hosting all that delicious food! It couldn't have been any better! and thank you to everyone that attended, all my family and friends and new friends and acquaintances. Thanks for being a part of this wonderful event. And, a very special thanks to our family elder who was so gracious enough to do the native blessing before the show.

Monday, September 29, 2008

5 days and counting!

Sapos Verdes 18" x 24" Transparent watercolor
Thank you for all your words of encouragement! I'm excited and nervous with anticipation. I took all 21 paintings down to the gallery on the hottest day of the weekend and have filled my exercise quota for the rest of the month. Ok, so I don't exercise, or lift weights cause they are just too darn heavy, and I can reach my target heart rate just by eating mocha dark chocolate truffles! I find that much more satisfying!
I think it will be a good show, the selected paintings look great together if I do say so myself. Now I just have to figure out what to wear, normally jeans and my baby stained t-shirts are comfy but not this time. I am so great full for this opportunity, and so appreciative for your comments of support!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

My First SOLO SHOW ! ! ! ! ! !

Honoring The Elders
So here's my surprise! it's my first solo show!

"Holding on to Traditions" at the Lynn House Gallery in Antioch California.
Oct. 4th - 25th, 2008.
Opening Reception Saturday, Oct. 4th from 4 - 6pm.

After a year of planning, it's finally happening and I am so excited and really nervous as I'm shy by nature but force myself to be outgoing. I rarely go to openings where my art has shown but have to go to this one. So if you are in the area, please come by and see some new paintings and mingle with art lovers! (I might be the one hiding in the back room?)
Please visit their website for more information

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Changing Rose

Transparent Watercolor 20" x 14"
I found these roses in a public garden and thought them so beautiful, not too many petals (to paint) and I especially loved how they changed colors as they aged. I painted this about three years ago when the twins were a little more independent and I could finally dive back into watercolors. I felt like I exploded with color and energy while doing this one so It's probably my favorite flower painting I've done.
I decided to post this one also because I'm a little backed up with my paintings because of back to school stuff and a surprise I'll post in a couple of days. Stay tuned!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Snack Time

Transparent Watercolor 14" x 20"

This was more work than I thought it would be, so many little animals and too many tempting treats! Let me just say this, they were all gone before the painting even began. Being Mr. Mom and having access to so many colorful objects is giving me lots of ideas for painting subject matter that I wouldn't normally try! ( and of course I must keep a healthy supply of "treats")

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Cup Of Flower

Transparent Watercolor 24" x 18"

I wanted to paint something challenging for me which has always been clear glass and shiny metal! I have seen many many beautiful crystal, hand blown, colored glass paintings so I thought I'd try making Pyrex just as pretty! It was a nice change from the portraits I've been doing and the textured rock and ceramics. I think I'll do some more cause it's always nice to stretch your wings and step out of your comfort zone every once in a while!

Monday, July 7, 2008

Holding On To Traditions 2

Transparent Watercolor 20" x 14"
Have you ever been around someone who just emanates magic? I am constantly amazed at this Pomo Elder's presence and connection with the creator. Again I am grateful to her for allowing me to paint her portrait. I have to say that the photo shoots are a hoot, we are constantly giggling and trying to be "serious", never sure if she's giggling with me or at me, probably both!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Mama Rosy

Mama Rosy #1, 35" x 24"
Still working on several involved works so I thought I'd post this in the mean time. This is the one that started all the Rosy paintings. I'm sure there's more of her to come as she gets older and I get the chance to be with her a little more.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Honor Song


This has to be one of my favorite paintings. It has everything I enjoy about painting, textures, pre-columbian Mayan pottery, Zapotec rugs, flowers, and most important for me, honoring my elders and ancestors.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

It's my birthday?

Frijoles! ! ! I completely forgot until one of the kids in my daughter's kindergarten class wished me a happy one this morning! Didn't I just have one a year ago?

I was watching Actors Studio a while ago and thought the ending questions interesting. So here's my answers:

What's your favorite color? Blue Green

What's your favorite sound? My family's laughter

Whats your least favorite sound? Screeching tires just before an accident

What's your favorite word? Alma (spirit)

What's your least favorite word? Stupid

What's your favorite swear word? Shit, dam it all to hell in a handbag!

What profession would you choose if you weren't an artist? Vulcanologist, paleontologist, archaeologist.. .any of the ologists that deals with mother earth or cultural history

If there's a heaven, what do you think God will say when you reach the pearly gates?
You again? or OK, What's on your mind child?

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Belated Happy Birthday!

Alex: 10 years old!

You are by far our greatest creation! More so than any painting I could paint, any clay I could mold, any bead work I could loose my eyesight working with, more than anything else I could get my hands on to create with.

Happy tenth anniversary on mother earth!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008


This one took a long time, longer than I expected and intended but I love the end results. I don't often paint with that much blue but it happens to be my favorite color so it was a real treat! The embroidery was tedious and fun and reminded me of my grandma sitting at the table with white cloth and turning it into beautiful flowers with her magic needle. I think I'll call this one Xochitl, the Nahuatl name for Queen of the Flowers, or Field of Flowers.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

The Gift

This is a birthday present to my mother in law, we haven't given it to her yet so I'm counting on the fact that she looks at the computer only once in a while if at all. This was finished about a month ago and we've been so busy that there hasn't been enough time to get together to surprise her. It was very pleasing to paint this one because I love painting gifts and also remembering the stories and special times we had with this special lady full of history and pride.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Sneak Peek

Been very busy lately both with family and several creative projects and paintings. Here's a peek at one of them, almost finished and can't wait to show it off!

Sunday, April 13, 2008


This was a gift for my brother in law and wife so I never really got to show it around until now. It was fun playing with texture and color and I especially like the way the wings turned out.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Feeling Nostalgic

We've been spring cleaning the garage and found some of the twins first clothes and got me all nostalgic. . . . so I've posted this one called "First Day Home" which is how they looked together in the crib after the white knuckle drive home from the hospital. They were so small and had that new baby smell which always puzzled me that I could even smell them cause I really have no sense of smell!

I've been working on some pretty involved paintings so this is kind of a "filler" post till I get the new ones finished.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Window Into Monte Alban

28" x 20" Transparent Watercolor

We had a small earthquake last night around 1am or so, and I don't know why but it must have brought up some old memories. As a result, I started thinking about our trip to Monte Alban and the ancientness of it.
When we were walking around the ruins, a white hawk kept circling us and a few hummingbirds would hover around just following as we took in the beauty. On the south side we found this open rectangular depression that must have been some large building and in the corner there was this "window". It was so intriguing that I knew one day I would paint it. I actually didn't notice the patterns on the stones until I drew it out.
This was a magical place and I am so glad we went there. I hope to go back one day and visit even more of the ruins in the area.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Transparent Watercolor Society of America

Great News! I just got the notice that my painting "Honoring The Elders" was selected for the TWSA's 32'nd Annual Exhibition! I am so honored and excited as these annual exhibitions are tough to get into. Over 900 paintings were submitted and only 85 were selected this year.
The show will be held at the Bloomington Art Center in Bloomington MN., May 16 - July 28, 2008.
I am toasting myself with a cyber drink! I'm having a Margarita with extra salt!, so if you feel like joining me. . Cheers!

(I posted the painting a couple of posts ago if you'd like to see it!)

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Yellow Hammer


This little one is pure light, loving, creative, sensitive and at the same time, rough and tumble. His hero is Legolas, and favorite color is yellow. He fills my heart with his observations and questions about heaven and angels, telling me how he was looking around at everyone while he was up in the sky before coming down to be with his mom and I, and makes me laugh with his made up jokes and pirate smile.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Story Teller

Transparent Watercolor 28" x 30"

She's the story teller of the family, there's a way she talks that draws you in to the world being told. For her, the kids will sit and pay attention and really feel the emotions of the story. That's her gift, that's her magic.

I had a lot of fun painting the hair, I thought I had used enough artistic hair taming gel but I guess her hair won! In truth, she has a ton of hair, the more moisture there is in the air, it seems to multiply.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Thank you everyone for your kind comments!

Seems like I haven't been here for a while! Yet another round of colds, I've been spared again, knock on wood! Been busy taking care of everyone, school stuff, teaching stuff and painting stuff. I'll be ready to post some new paintings soon. . I can't wait to finish these new ones! (and get a full night's sleep again!)

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Tagged Again!

I've been tagged again by Mary Sheenan Winn, a wonderful painter, check out her blog! I especially like her little umbrellas.

So, once again, I have to tell 5 little known facts about myself then tag five other artists and invite them to do the same. So here goes:

1. I have 6 sisters and 5 brothers, I'm the fifth born. Now that's old school Mexico for ya.

2. I have very little to no sense of smell. Occasionally I'll smell something but I don't know what it is, I have no reference. Oddly enough, I get nauseous when someone is wearing too much perfume so I always have to hold my breath going through that department of a store. (and yes, I can taste food, and it wouldn't matter anyways cause I could probably win an eating contest)

3. I've had issues with Blue Jays ever since one ate the two baby hummingbirds that were nesting in our back yard. Although my latest infatuation is with the Magpie Jay I saw it in the movie "Stardust" and fell in love. . . . looks like an Eastern Jay that had a one night stand with a Magpie.

4. I've seen 2 Angels in my lifetime.

5. I am partially red and green color blind. Reds when they get too dark or too light turn grey, and the same with green, I'll often confuse the two cause they look the same grey to me. For years I thought mauve was just another wishy washy grey. I always have to look at the labels when I need to squish more paint out onto my palette and it takes me forever just to find those two colors in my paint box.

Now to tag some artists: (Happy Birthday Rhonda!)

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Honoring The Elders

Transparent Watercolor 14" x 20"
I was asked about this painting in an email so I thought I'd share it on my blog. This is our twin Lily. I made this headdress for her because we think it's important for our kids to learn about their heritage, so this is a first step in learning about the Pomo traditions.
The moment she put it on, she took on a grace that reminded me of the traditional dancers at the roundhouse at Kule Loklo, Point Reyes National Seashore. She even stood the way they do before going in to dance. I had my camera so she could see what she looked like but I think I captured something more and hopefully I've conveyed it through this painting.
This was also the first time I'd done any bead work in about 8 years. I really enjoyed it and intend to do it more often.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Holding on to Traditions

Transparent Watercolor 14"x 20"

Here's another painting inspired by the dances at Kule Loklo, Point Reyes National Seashore. I'm fortunate enough to know this incredibly kind and patient Pomo Elder. Being around her is like taking a breath of fresh air. I'm grateful she allowed me to photograph her in her traditional headdress for some upcoming paintings.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Squash Blossoms

Happy New Year!
I've been wanting to paint squash blossoms since enjoying them in my quesadillas this summer and also painting my Ken Edwards pitcher. After a few days of holiday fall out, I got back to work and this painting seemed to flow out of the brushes by itself. . . I love when that happens especially since it hardly ever happens.
I tackled my most problematic color. . yellow! oddly enough, that was the easiest area to paint, go figure. This year, I intend to challenge myself to paint more and to continue growing as an artist.