Thursday, June 6, 2013

Is Anybody Out There?

WOW! My friend, Robbie, mentioned I hadn't posted any art in a long time which I knew because I have been traveling quite a bit recently. I had no idea it's been since April though! That's crazy!

As I said, I've done some traveling lately to include Vegas, Colorado and Louisiana/Mississippi. I am going to Texas here shortly and now have a trip to DC planned as well. All that to say that I have NOT been making much of a mess with my paints and stuff and really need to. I am back in my studio and have been playing with a canvas just to rebuild strength and steadiness (which I seem to be sorely lacking) in my hands so have not begun on a planned piece that is intended to be a gift. Hopefully I will feel confident enough to start here within the next day or two.

So for now I will share the collaborative pieces I participated with for Face in the World. Unfortunately I do not have pictures of them all in their completed stage and one I am not able to share the photo at all. We worked in teams of 5 artists with each one doing a portion of the work and then sending it on for additional work. When your piece is completed it is returned to you. Mine is the lovely lady at the bottom!

(I did the hair in this one)

(again, golden highlights in the hair)

 (Eyelashes, brows and lips)
(This is mine to keep and I did the background and general face/neck)

This was an adventurous challenge for me and through it I have "met" some truly amazing and talented artists that have become a tremendous source of encouragement and laughs! 
BTW - our group grew out of the 29 Faces Challenge that I did in Feb 2013.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Evolution of a Painting - Part 2

So now I am ready to put paint to canvas. Let's begin! I basically just block in with color where thigns are going to go. Notice the wave?

2013-01-17 Haumea

Well I had to change it. Composition wise it just wasn't coming together the way I wanted it to. Once I reversed the flowed so fast I was thrilled! Her hair becomes the wave and it all comes from her tears. The lava comes from her lips - deep beneath the surface.
2013-01-18 Haumea

For this painting I did something I normally don't do and that was to turn the canvas as I worked on her face. I wanted to make sure she wasn't wonky! Her fern haku blends the two planes together.

2013-01-19 Haumea

More details in her eye and...voila!

The Legend of Haumea
2013-01-19 Haumea

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Evolution of a Painting

I realized that I never posted about this painting so here we go...

While toodling around in my sketchbook one day I was reminded of the legend of Haumea. I have often seen works that portray Pele in the volcano fire but couldn't recall seeing Haumea's legend done in any form. Depending on which version or source you get your legend from will make the "facts" vary but she is known to be the "mother earth" and deeply connected to childbirthing. She has numerous daughters but I focused on only two; those being Pele (fire) and Namaka (sea).

So I began to sketch ideas....
2013-04-25 12.03.34 2013-04-25 12.16.19 2013-04-25 12.16.42

Normally I do not remove sketches from my books but I used these as references as I painted.

Here is the initial sketch on canvas done in water soluble pencil. You can see the changes in details and how things evolve as I work through the concept.


I will share more tomorrow

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

While at the Bellagio....

While in Vegas for Courtney's wedding, we stopped at the Bellagio to visit the seasonal garden which was lovely. Spring flowers were everywhere and they even had a butterfly house. While walking through I was thrilled to see numerous Chihuly sculptures on display and wandered into the small gallery and gift shop. The shopkeeper was very gracious and allowed us to pose next to some of the art for photos! I picked up a new journal in my favorite green that also boasts a cover of "Float"! After that Chelsey, Patti and I went to the hotel's gallery to see the Warhol Out West exhibit where I was delighted to find "Silver Clouds" and promptly became a work of art by placing myself amid the puffs of silver. The docent seemed to enjoy my joy and exclamations of "I can't believe I'm in a Warhol" and "I'm art!" Etc. He laughed and said "Not everyone gets it or experiences it like that!"

A perfect afternoon in Vegas or anywhere for that matter. Sigh.

Once on the Bellagio site click on the link for the web cam and gallery photos. 
NOTE: There IS a time lapse for 3 different garden setups!

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Emiko's Portrait

Emi's beautiful portrait arrived yesterday from the amazingly talented Jennifer Frith! It is beyond lovely and captures Emi's spirit perfectly! I will be having Jenny work on Kenji-Boy's soon. It has been cathartic for me to have her do this work. It has given me a chance to talk about Emi, browse through photos and relive sweet memories of her. Yes at times its been quite painful and sad yet worthwhile. From this venture, I have formed a sweet friendship with Jenny which furthers my belief that art  changes people's lives and the world.

Please be sure to check out Jenny's blog and facebook page and contact her to have a beloved pet's portrait done by her! You won't regret it!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Dreaming of Lantana

Stepping out of my favorite color palette and into green, orange, pink and yellow brought memories of Lantana flowers to my mind. Does it conjur up something else for you?

2013-04-10 14.51.11-1

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Exploring Aboriginal Art

Since I posted about this art challenge I have been playing with this art form and am thoroughly enjoying it! For me, it includes many of my favorite things, dots. circles, symbolism and my focus for this year - mandala.

I have not decided if I am participating in the challenge yet (based on some travelling coming up and time issues) but am still creating some pieces for my own enjoyment (and possibly selling if you are interested!)

So I shared this sneak peek the other day on facebook....
2013-04-08 11.15.24

Here's the entire piece and an explanation of the symbolism for me.... 2013-04-08 11.15.02

If you are a regular reader ( and I hope you are or will become one!) you know that I have chosen "complete" as my word for this year. This is a representation of that word. The very center image indicates a camp or home with symbols for people surrounding it. I chose one male and 4 females since that is what our family consists of. From there, the blues represent water with the final outside row being tracks that people would make on a journey. After traversing the world for 30 years, we are about to come full circle in our journey to create a home for our family in the islands later this year. I think this says that rather nicely and I can't wait to hang it in our future home!

Today I have been working on something less "personal" but still within the art style of Aboriginal Dot art. But I will only give you the sneak peek from facebook for now...and say I am thinking of lantana.
2013-04-09 12.49.08

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Aboriginal Art Swap

I adore aboriginal art but I have never tried my hand at it. So I am stoked there is a swap being held at The Art Colony

Create and swap a 4"x 6" painting in any medium, inspired by Aboriginal dot painting! Sign up for the "Aboriginal Dot Painting" Swap, by adding your name and address to this thread before April 30.

Note: You will need to join The Art Colony to participate but its an amazing online community and totally worthwhile to do so. Plus its free to join!

I think its vital to understand this is not just making dots on canvas. Aboriginal art tells a story - a story about people and their relationship to their land and how they view and understand the world. Watch this! The complete documentary is available on amazon (of course!). To learn more about this art form do some searches using the terms "aboriginal art" "indigenous dot art" and "Aboriginal Art symbols". Visit to find numerous talented artists creating in this style! You will also have a  visual treat if you search on pinterest for these terms!

Sign up and join the fun

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Rob's Painting

I already posted this on facebook but thought it was a good way to get back into blogging.

This is what I've been working on recently. A mixed media piece that was commissioned from me. I gave the flag a dimensional element as well as the Chief's headdress with individual paper feathers that are hand cut and placed. The chevron is the rank insignia for USAF Chief Master Sergeant. I painted one of these for my husband and have had others request variations on his original painting. The writing in the background is the creed they live by along with personalization - this one has the words to the Texas state song since the guy is from Texas. He also requested the Texas state flag be included.

2013-04-02 10.39.06

Friday, March 1, 2013

Blog Break for Emiko

My beautiful beloved puppy, Emiko, passed away on 27 Feb 2013 and my heart is so broken I cannot bring myself to do much at this point.
Emiko Kamalani Nonaka 31 Dec 2009 - 26 Feb 2013

I am away from my studio and blogging for a bit. Thanks for understanding and I will see you back here when I am able.

Here are some articles/sites I found helpful:
Grieving for Pets and Humans: Is There a Difference?
Coping with the Death of Your Pet
Coping With Pet Loss
Thanks to a new online art friend, Janet, I learned about the Rainbow Bridge
Overcoming Grief About Pet Loss
Lightning Strike Pet Loss Support
Pet Loss Matters