Newspaper famous

Last week I was interviewed and photographed in my studio for a piece in the San Antonio News-Express.  It appears in today's paper, front page of the my SA section. If you are a subscriber you can read it online here and check out some of the photos.

Pet portraits are on special until the end of the month, you can order your own in my online shop.  The following sizes are available: 8" x 8", 8" x 10" & 12" x 12".

Thank you to reporter Elda Silva and photographer Bob Owen for the exposure!



Painted these two portraits today in my studio.  Cinnamon 5" x 5" acrylic on wood (left)
& 8" x 10" acrylic on canvas.

Last Friday I was interviewed and photographed in my studio for the San Antonio News-Express.  The article about my pet portraits hits newsstands tomorrow, but you can read it online here.


Painting from a Collage Project

I developed this collage to painting project for the advanced painting class I teach at the Alicia Trevino Lopez Center.  Pictured are the collage I used to inspire my own painting for demonstration.  Many of my senior painters rely on magazine images for inspiration and I wanted to give them a different way to inspire their ideas while creating an original work of art.  We talked about the history and process of collage and looked at the work of Picasso, Raoul Haussman and Richard Hamilton.  For this project, they used found images, but not in their entirety.  Bits and pieces of magazine images and photographs were combined to create their composition, which was then used as the basis for their paintings.  I demonstrated blocking in the painting with quick sweeps of color before going in to work on the details. Loosely developing the painting all at once is creating a lot more unity, and relieving the stress of 'ruining it'...after all, once it dries it can be painted over.  The project is creating some surreal painters out of my landscape and portrait enthusiasts!

Paper Roses: Idea to Image

Inspired by memory, family and Miss Threadgoode of Fried Green Tomatoes...   My parents have packed up their house here in the city, in preparation for their move back to Ohio. the only thing not in boxes is their furniture.  The green chair that belonged in many houses before served as my visual inspiration. This summer I plan to complete a series of these 'portraits', pulling from old photographs of interiors and different chairs.  

Lately I've done a few artist workshops, talking about my where my ideas come from.  It has made me look back to my thesis work and consider why the color and content changed so drastically.  Like the modern and postmodern artists I admire, my work is loaded with personal symbolism (not always apparent without explanation) and a lot of that is a direct result of my own past experience.  One of my students asked me why I don't make work 'like my creepy ghost chairs' anymore, and my answer was simply that I am telling a different story now.  To quote from my earlier post  "This painting (one of a pair) is an exploration of memory, attachment and absence.  The subject matter is linked to my past work in graduate school, but the content has changed.  While my other pieces with furniture were about the process of forgetting, these paintings are about the preservation of a memory."

Paper Roses, acrylic on canvas, 24" x 36" 1 1/2"


You Are a Rare Bird: Idea to Image

My submission for the HOT! Texas Artists Respond to Climate Change Exhibition, sponsored by Bihl Haus Arts.  You are a Rare Bird, 16" x 20" x 2" acrylic on canvas.

 I knew my painting would have something to do with birds and incorporate my wallpaper patterns, but wasn't sure where to begin.  I did quite a bit of research on climate change and how it affects the migration patterns of birds.  Did you know that Texas is a major route for migratory birds due to our location in the central flyway?  Of all the species in the US, 2/3 can be found in Texas (most are migratory).  From the looks of our backyard birdbath, you might think the only birds we see are mourning doves and the occasional bluejay or grackle...  

The changes in weather are signaling earlier departures and changing the migratory range for many species.  Insects are hatching sooner, plants are blooming earlier and the birds are venturing further away from their normal habitats, not always finding the food and temperatures necessary for survival.  The Golden Cheeked Warbler is featured in my painting, the only bird who nests exclusively in Texas.  As their habitat is altered by urbanization and their migration affected by changing temperatures, this species is endangered.  In my afocal painting, the birds fly in every direction.  I intended for them to appear without direction and took a bit of creative license with their appearance.  Identified by their golden cheeks , the rest of the bodies were painted by memory.  They fly over a slate gray background,  covered in an abstract pattern derived from the juniper trees where the birds nest.  Dotted amidst the pattern are white raindrops, welcome weather in times of drought.  In my art, wallpaper symbolizes a familiar domestic space, a welcome home.  That home is quickly disappearing for these birds, who are particularly susceptible to the effects of climate change.  It was a challenge to create this artwork, researching unfamiliar subject matter while remaining true to my creative process and style.

As with my other pieces, this began as a series of sketches that were then transferred to tracing paper.  Arranged and rearranged, the sketches were taped down once the composition was established and redrawn on canvas.  See below for the evolution of idea to image.  


Pet Portrait Commissions & Workshop

Scout, 12" x 12" x 2" acrylic on wooden cradleboard 

Pixie, 8" x 10" acrylic on canvas
Fresh new paintings!  Commission your own pet portraits through my art shop.  Portraits are on sale through June 30th.  Trinity Art League of San Antonio invited me to give a portrait painting workshop on Tuesday night at their monthly meeting.  I demonstrated how to grid from a photograph, the basics of acrylic painting and color mixing for animal and human portraiture.  I also gave some tips on obtaining a good photographic reference to work from (I prefer eye-level photos when painting pets).  
There were quite a few newcomers to the meeting and some familiar faces from previous demonstrations.  The members were very welcoming and there was a lot of creative energy in the room!  In July I'll be teaching a three day workshop on the art of portrait painting, students will complete one 16" x 20" portrait in acrylic. The workshop will be hosted by the Commander's House in San Antonio; sign up is July 1st from 9-11 am.  Details coming soon...contact me with any questions!


Majestic National Juried Exhibition

I am excited to announce two of my artworks were accepted for exhibition in the Majestic Galleries national show!  The show runs from June 27-August 24.  The Majestic is in Nelsonville, Ohio, a short drive from my alma mater, Ohio University.  Check out the other exhibitors here.