Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Give Art and art classes as gifts for the holidays

These online classes are a gift that keeps on giving. Once downloaded, they can be watched over and over.

Think about gifting online classes in either advanced encaustic techniques:

And/ or Drawing and Painting Faces for beginner and intermediate artists. Easy step by step classes :

Also I have sale paintings on my blog and would make wonderful gifts

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Kids, traning and furniture, continued

The response to my last posting with the tables created by Cynthia Hamilton and her crew of kids from the neighborhood was positive and it seems that those tables will soon have new homes. I have been asked to post some other treasures remaining in Cynthia's studio, so here are a couple more.
 38" h x 30"w x 16" d.
 $ 1600 pesos

yellow/green table with vintage hardware, $1600 pesos
Wood chest

14.5 h x 21" w x 13 d

$650 pesos

Wood chest

14.5 h x 21" w x 13 d

$650 pesos

Wood chest

14.5 h x 21" w x 13 d

$650 pesos
38" h x 30"w x 16" d.
 $ 1600 pesos

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Tables and Training

My daughter, Cynthia Hamilton came to San Miguel almost 2 years ago. We were side by side neighbors in a mostly Mexican neighborhood, until our move last June.

Cynthia, who was trained in faux finishing in Italy, noticed that many of the neighborhood kids were not going to school and just either picking up garbage to take to the trucks or sitting around the street playing with their phones. The older boys were openly sniffing glue all day long.

 In an effort to help a few of the younger kids, she started a training program to teach the kids to paint walls and most importantly to paint beautiful finishes on furniture. She paid each a small salary. With her constant supervision, and hands on help, the results were wonderful. They were at her apartment everyday but Sunday. She fed them a healthy lunch, tried teaching them some English, took them on trips to Celaya and Comonfort ,(they had never been outside of San Miguel), feeling that this would help them to have a future other than what they saw on the street.

Now she has several beautiful pieces of furniture that no longer fit into our new home and would like to sell them. This is not a business. When these, and and a few more things, are sold, there will be no more. The offer is only for people living in the vacinity.

Cynthia is an artist and art dealer, but her creative eye and caring heart has helped produce this beautiful furniture and perhaps has encouraged some young people to choose a life of creativity and work, rather than drugs.

Hand finished blue table with vintage hardware and matte varnished. 30" w x 31.5" h x 17" d. $1200 pesos/ $90 us.

Shades of green round table. 32" h x 15" h & d. $ 600 pesos / $45 us.
Custom painted yellow table. 32" h x 38" w x 26"d. $1200 pesos / $90 us.

SMA red corner table with matte varnish. 33" h x 27" w x 17.5" d. $650 pesos /$48.
Lunch in front of the TV

learning to paint a wall

Putting on the first coat of paint on a table

Friday, November 21, 2014

The Power of Women Artists

"The Brush is My Torch"
The Power of the Brush, 80 cm x 100 cm

"Contemplation", 36 " x 36"

After a few months work, I finished the last painting of this series. It is my interpretation of powerful women painters.

 I see visual artists as souls with a mission to communicate; therefore I named this series of paintings "The Messenger"
These paintings portray the painter’s mood, consciousness, and inner struggle to convey feelings in a nonverbal way; conveying ideas or understanding in the viewer’s consciousness. Why make art, if not to be seen and shared with a wider audience? We connect our spirits through art.

I am convinced that we paint who we are, and I believe that women often work more from deep feelings and inner guidance than men. Our personalities and beliefs influence the work.
Why do I portray only women painters? There are more women artists than men. More women graduate from art school, and I am a woman who has had experience with artistic
prejudice, that still continues. Now is the time to embrace and recognize women artists' contributions, artists both dead and alive, to a greater degree. 

The Brush is My Truth, 80 cm x 100 cm self-portrait) the last one in the series

The Power of Art"

Painting is My Spiritual Connection"
"I Only Have Eyes for Art", 80 cm x 100 cm

"Waiting For The Muse", 80 cm x 100 cm

Thursday, November 20, 2014

My heart is heavy

Alexander Mora Venancio

This is a paint sketch that I made yesterday to honor and remember one of the 43 students that was abducted in September. Today is a day of remembrance and there will be protests across Mexico. Artists both Mexican and international have been asked to make a portrait of one of the students. i choose Alexander. While studying the features of this young man, I wiped the tears from my eyes so I could continue to paint. My thoughts were with him, his family and his country. and my own grandsons.  I will take this oil on paper sketch somewhere public today to add my prayers and pain to that of my adopted country.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

working on a self portrait

It was easier to work today with a scraped palette and a new batch of fresh paint.

I avoided making a self portrait because I didn't look forward to gazing into a mirror all day, but it is working out well because I am working so big that it is breaking down to shapes. Here is what happened today.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Clean that palette!

This is where I started yesterday
I got back into the studio yesterday and decided to paint over the last painting I had been working on for days. It was getting too cute and I couldn't stand it.

I started painting without covering the under painting and soon realized that I couldn't clearly see the paint I was mixing on such a paint encrusted palette. It took me so long to scrape the dried paint off the glass palette, that I stopped early on in the painting. I'll get back to it this afternoon.

no clear area to mix fresh colors.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

The website is ready

Although I don't think a website is ever finished when an artist continues to make art and wants to share it, for today, the site is up. I am sure I will be making changes everyday for a while.

One thing new that I am doing is offering older paintings for sale at much lower prices. Go to the site: and click on SALE.

Now that the big job of building the website is over, I am excited about actually writing a newsletter that I have been promising for too long. It will be personal about my work and how it affects me, my feelings about work in progress, creativity, successes and failures, and much more. Please sign up on this blog with your email address to receive the newsletter.

Here are a couple of 6" x 6" encaustic paintings in box frames that on listed in the sale section

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

working on new website

I have been working for over a week on building a new website. I almost talked myself out of it until I saw that all the images of my abstract paintings had completely disappeared from my old site. I knew it would be a learning curve, so I cleaned my studio and moved my laptop to the lovely, light room, upstairs, where after the first frustrating day, I managed to put it together. It now has almost my whole art life on it. The link below will take you to the working site. I hope sometime today to have it published to my existing domain. If you take the time to look at it, please note any typos or confusion. I don't think I can see straight anymore.


The view is restful for my tired eyes

Even on a gloomy, rainy afternoon, this is a pleasant place to work on the website 

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Last night's salon

This slide is the first abstract painting I made in art school in 1953
My friend,  fellow artist, and retired gallerista, Joaquin PiƱeiro hosted his first monthly salon and I was the guest speaker. I talked about my 60 year journey as an artist  accompanied by a slide presentation. It was certainly a trip down memory lane for me, and hopefully the audience gained an insight to an artist life and motivation.

Joaquin opens his studio for these events and has lined up a fascinating group of presenters.
San Miguel has countless fascinating people artists writers musicians and story tellers. These salons will allow the public to meet some of these creative people free of charge. The space is limited, so reservations are a must.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Classical art training

I have been asked to give a talk and presentation on my artistic journey of 60 years. I have prepared a slide show starting with my first abstract painting that I made in school in 1952 or 1953.

I am also going to show a drawing of a pot that I made the first semester of art school. We were not allowed to use color of the first semester. We worked in pencil or charcoal until we could create an almost photographic likeness of mundane objects. It was wonderful training in learning to really see. The final for the anatomy class was to correctly draw the skeleton without a model. The second semester we had to know and be able to draw the muscles over the bones.
old pencil drawing. That was when I had a different name. note the grade!
.This kind of classical training prepared me to understand the human body, a crumpled paper bag, and even a ear of corn. I challenged myself with choosing to draw the corn, one kernel at a time.

Monday, November 3, 2014

7 paintings hung

Although I plan on making another painting, most likely a self portrait in this series, I have to take some time off to build a new website and create some online marketing. Everything is for sale and can be purchased at 

I rehung my gallery space yesterday. I still have to paint all the edges; a task I dread because it it so boring.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

What to do with bad art

Bob and Roberta Smith: Art Amnesty


Many artists delude themselves into believing that they are promising, productive artists when they would live much more fulfilled and useful lives engaged in proper employment. I PROMISE NEVER TO MAKE ART AGAIN provides a baptism of necessary real life and allows artists to "Get Real." Ditch a life of poverty and precarious self-employment! Don't miss a life-changing opportunity.
If I lived in N.Y. I could get rid of a pile of bad art, like this one.

On view October 26, 2014–March 8, 2015
Bob and Roberta Smith are issuing a call to Artists. Pack it in. Bob and Roberta Smith are delighted to offer an Amnesty for your Bad Art. Turn in your brushes and video cameras. Hand in your chisels and marble.
Bob and Roberta Smith are offering an opportunity for artists to dispose of their artwork at MoMA PS1, and to retire from making art. Beginning October 2, artists are invited to deposit their art in dumpsters located in the museum’s courtyard, which will be emptied as needed throughout the period of the Art Amnesty. Those who wish to exhibit their work one final time before it is destroyed may bring their art to the 2nd Floor Main Galleries, where museum staff will install it for public view. The museum will accept work under the Art Amnesty during regular hours, subject to certain restrictions outlined in the submission guidelines. The exhibition reprises and expands upon their Art Amnesty originally presented at Pierogi Gallery in 2002.
As part of the Art Amnesty, the Smiths will also make available a pledge form at the museum that can be signed by any artist or member of the public: I PROMISE NEVER TO MAKE ART AGAIN. Those who commit themselves will receive an official I AM NO LONGER AN ARTIST badge designed by Bob and Roberta Smith, and shall be invited to create one final drawing for inclusion in the Art Amnesty gallery exhibition, using materials provided onsite. Those wishing simply to discard a work will be asked to sign a pledge that reads I NEVER WANT TO SEE THIS WORK OF ART AGAIN.
While the Art Amnesty provides an occasion for artists to clear out their studios, it also serves other needs. Those who have been the victims of gifts of art, for example, are invited to dispose of these unwanted aesthetic presents at the museum. And as the Smiths note, “Many successful artists have recently voiced embarrassment that their work commands high prices. Artists may also use the opportunity of the Art Amnesty to expel certain works of art from the art market and demote them to objects unburdened by grand expectations and dashed dreams.” The Smiths will be the first to contribute to the Art Amnesty, discarding a batch of work previously exhibited in New York.
At the conclusion of the Art Amnesty, the museum will securely dispose of all art works contributed to the exhibition and dumpsters.
At the opening of the exhibition on October 26, Bob and Roberta Smith will also organize an Art Party at MoMA PS1, at which children will be encouraged to make art with their families using art materials available at the event. Beginning at the Art Party and throughout the run of the Art Amnesty, a third pledge form will be available for signing, which states I WILL ENCOURAGE CHILDREN TO BE ALL THAT THEY CAN BE. CHOOSE ART AT SCHOOL. These pledges will be collected, along with "first drawings" children make and wish to contribute, and mailed to local politicians to encourage arts funding and arts education.
“The personal journey for most artists starts with enthusiasm and joy, and ends, if the artist does not have huge success, in embarrassed children taking their dead parents' work to the dump,” the Smiths explain. “Taken together, the Art Amnesty and Art Party explore the full arc of the life of an artist.”
The Art Party was initiated in Brooklyn in 2011 “to provide a creative yet critical discourse of hope in response to the Tea Party’s discourse of austerity and despair.” As the Smiths stated at its inception: “The Art Party stands for stimulus and sensible long-term measures to rebuild American confidence. The Art Party says singers make America sing and dancers make America dance. The Art Party celebrates that innovation comes from sheets of blank paper and pencils. The Art Party has a broadly liberal and humanistic agenda on other issues. Where the Tea Party is hawkish the Art Party is peaceful. The Art Party is opposed to the death penalty and supports women’s rights. The Art Party is not a formal political party but rather a pressure group and natural home for progressive liberal people to unite on issues of agreement.” The Smiths have subsequently organized Art Party events throughout the United Kingdom to protest the British government’s proposed eradication of art from the British school syllabus.
A film that depicts the story of the Art Party, directed by the Smiths with Tim Newton, will also be screened at the opening. A feature documentary about the work of Bob and Roberta Smith, Make Your Own Damn Art: the World of Bob and Roberta Smith (2012), directed by John Rogers, will be shown throughout the run of the Amnesty.
Drawing equally from conceptual performance history and nonsense literature, as well as tenets of British empiricism and the rhetoric of political campaigns, Bob and Roberta Smith's allergy to pretension and preciosity can lend an offending bluntness or seeming nihilistic absurdity to their actions. The Smiths ask:
Why are some people artists while others are not? Was Joseph Beuys an idiot when he said everyone is an artist? Do artists think they are a cut above the rest of us? Are the arts a good in themselves, or is it much, much, more complicated than that?