Thursday, January 25, 2018

WOW, it's getting real.

Wow, it's been 4 years since my last blog post. That's due to the fact that so much has happened, so fast and I'm hanging on with full force! Where do I start?
I live in Steamboat Springs. I'm the featured artist at the Sheraton Steamboat Resort, where I decorate their lobby with art for sale, and I do live painting Friday nights in the lobby. It's a great venue.
My art is also in the Steamboat Art Museum gift shop, Butcherknife Brewing Co, Artisans Market, Off the Beaten Path, and several fly fishing shops.
I am focusing on wedding paintings now, because I LOVE IT!
I am much better at painting clouds now than when I lived in Hawaii and although I have not been creating the quantity of paintings that I used to, the ones I make now seem to be better quality.
I owe that to YouTube. Yes, simple you tube videos that teach things like "Painting clouds with Acrylics" or "Painting Trees" ... simple things like this have changed the quality of my paintings tremendously. I should watch you tube videos on a daily basis. There is a lot I'd like to learn, and master as far as painting goes. Maybe this year I should focus on 1) lighting (directional shadows and highlights), and 2) figure studies (people).
I think the lighting is a priority.

Now I'm spending a lot of time strategically marketing for my wedding paintings.
Which sources to invest in.. things like that. There are so many ways to advertise and so many sales people ready to take 1K in the drop of a bucket.
I'm starting social media marketing a little more. Pintrest and Instagram... and last night I just invested in Facebook paid advertising.. we'll see how this goes. I feel like I'm diving into a deep pool (and I'm not a good swimmer) hoping I'll make it out a better swimmer!

I'm starting to love the winters, but that's just because it's really pretty.
I don't love cold weather and the inability to paint out there! But that's ok.. I get to focus on marketing during the winter. I'd really just like my wedding paintings to take off and paint 2-3 weddings per week all spring, summer and fall, and be able to take the winters off! Maybe eventually get an RV so I can travel in more comfort for wedding painting season.

I have a new commercial for my wedding painting which I'm so happy with! That will be a great tool to spread the word in a more professional manner :) Watch it here :    I don't understand why it doesn't show up higher in the search engine.. I'll have to do SEO work on it.

So overall, life is GREAT! I'm very happy, healthy, and so is my beautiful daughter. I'm not sure how blogs are supposed to help my marketing, but maybe my future posts will be more impersonal and more focused on my art, rather than hearing the inner workings of my brain while I sip on my coffee.

Well whoever is reading this, thank  you for your time, and I appreciate so much that you admire my art. Please help me out by sharing my information about wedding painting to anyone you know. You never know who is going to want a wedding painting, and each one makes a difference in my and Enya's life. I don't get hand outs from anyone, no child support or external sources.. I am not from a rich family, and I'm single doing this on my own. It took a LOT of hard work, constant thinking about marketing, and constant effort on my part to get where I am. I'm not rich by any means, but I am so proud to say that my self taught talent, my self-driven motivation and my independence is what puts a roof over our heads, and allows my daughter to experience some great things in her life. Boy does time go fast, it better be used productively! Most importantly, it's people like you who support my path that makes this possible, so thank you again from the bottom of my heart.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Life in the Mountains

I love it here. I am so happy to have taken the leap that I did. The transition from tropical climate to a high altitude, dry climate was an interesting adjustment, but I'm getting used to it. Living here has been everything I hoped it would be, and it's only getting better! Enya and I landed in Boulder June of last year - it was a difficult land. A few rocky roommates in the beginning and unsettled housing, but after a couple months we found our sweet roommates Angelie and Petra, and finally began to feel more settled in Boulder. I didn't really start painting much until the spring. Then in May/June my paintings were featured at Creative Framing Art Gallery in Louisville. Then I met a wonderful man who owns a couple beautiful wineries, (Mile High Winery in Denver CO and Winter Park Winery in Fraser, CO) and together we are joining forces to create something even more spectacular! We are registering both wineries as galleries, featuring my work!! I will also teach 4 art classes per month - the "Paint 'n Sip" style class, and traditional painting color theory class. I am so excited to feel like I have a base for my art. A place where I can build it and bring in a following. It's a dream come true, in more than one way :) In addition to painting and teaching classes I will contribute to the winery by doing graphic work, maintaining the website and organizing events at the wineries. For example, we will be hosting formal dinners pared with wine,  showcasing musicians, and I will also teach yoga classes. It will be a beautiful social stop and hopefully a regular place for the community to gather.
I am more than excited every waking moment (and probably while I'm dreaming as well!) to be a part of this, and to have such a sweet wonderful person by my side to bring our vision to a reality. It couldn't be a better fit. I am so happy……….thank you thank you thank you GOD.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Mahalo Maui, it's been beautiful...but are those MOUNTAINS I see ahead???!

This ohana has sheltered us for two lovely years, but my real home has no physical address.

As much as I love it here on Maui, with so much of the islands left to explore, I feel a calling to tread solid ground that expands far and wide - where I can drive for at a time - and see something new every day!
I envision the landscape to be jagged and peaceful. Still and strong. Masculine.
Boulder is a safety net for me to land, since I've lived there before. It is where I first realized that my life could be more magical than I had ever imagined. It is where I transitioned from an art teacher to a full time artist. It is where I learned my endurance as a cyclist and hiker. It is where I met people who have inspired me so much that my life is more meaningful today because of them. It is where people dance in the streets, and where on any day of the week I could hear amazing music from instruments I've never heard played so beautifully....on the sidewalk or a simple open mic.
For example... at Amante Cafe, my artwork was hung for one month, and on a random Friday night, the most amazing xylophone magician/musician began playing and it literally put me in a trance. It was as if my spirit was overflown with the energy and light which was pouring into space from the sound waves of these wooden slabs. I never knew a xylophone could speak that way.
And going to a random open mic was like going to a concert with various guest stars, one better than the next. Talent from each individual - ranging from piano to guitar ...and all original singer/songwriters. The talent in that small city is unmeasurable.
The city looks like a beautiful large town, with it's quaint old buildings and historic and colorful Pearl Street. It's is so easy to get around by bike, bus or car. It's flat, yet pressed up against the foothills of the Rocky Mountains - so the Flatirons Mountain is the monumental backdrop when you face west.
And the dancing!!! Oh my. I just love to shake it to the music, esp the African drumming. And Bluegrass music is pretty much the "local" theme, which I admit I LOVE. I have no problem getting sweaty dancing my heart out to good ol rockin bluegrass!
OH BUT THE WINTER! HOW CRAZY! Well one of the most magical mornings I can remember was when I took a walk in front of the Flatirons - mesmerized by how beautifully the ice coated the finest twigs on the trees,  each and every blade of wheat, and how it coated the flatirons like sparkeling glass....under the beaming turquoise sky. The sun shone so bright that it began to melt the ice and it glistened like a magic only mother nature could create.
So people think I'm crazy to consider leaving Maui, but I have so many beautiful magical memories of Boulder, that I would be crazy not to visit there again. This time with a beautiful being by my side.
I could go on and on about many more aspects of Boulder that are wonderful, including the universities that offer master's degrees (esp Naropa) that interest me, to the farmer's markets that are so huge, and such an enjoyable social event to frequent.
There is a lot to look forward to!
But I will spend my last few weeks here, not only finishing the last two commissioned paintings I have, and selling my stuff (including 27 original Maui paintings which are hanging in my ohana), but more importantly ENJOYING the magical beauty of Maui.
Perhaps someday I will return. Perhaps as soon as Nov. 1! Who knows? I know one thing for sure....
so long as I have my daughter, I am fine. And so long as we are somewhere beautiful, I will be inspired to paint. So long as I'm inspired to paint, my work will sell itself, and my career as an artist will continue. The best way for me to stay inspired is to be somewhere beautiful where my heart and soul can sing and express itself from one moment to the next. No expectations. No deadlines. No pressure. One breath and one brushstroke at a time, my paintings will tell the story of my journey...and it always starts right now.

Friday, November 16, 2012

I'm in Maui Fine Art Gallery!

A new gallery in Kihei has opened behind Cafe O'Lei, and the owner Chad has invited me to display select original paintings based on the South Maui theme. I am honored to have my work displayed along side some of Maui's best known artists like Anna Keay and Anna Good. I am going through a phase of using the palette knife in my paintings - I enjoy the texture and movement I am able to convey with this technique.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Maui Makani Classic, Windsurfing Finals

Painting at Ho'okipa beach, the Maui Makani Classic is the finals for the American Windsurfing Tour. Here you can see the best windsurfers of the world, 17 countries represented at this event. It's so amazing, energetic and inspiring! I am honored to have been invited to capture the essence of this epic event on far I've competed 5 paintings, and I have more to come! The last day of the event is Nov 3rd, so I'm going to be painting as much as I can during this time. Some of the paintings are on display and available for purchase at "By the Bay" Gallery in Paia, Maui.

Monday, August 13, 2012

2012 Lahaina Arts Society Award Winner!

This painting won the 2012 Lahaina Arts Society Award! I love combining historic architecture with the island's's a theme I plan to continue.
24x48 Pioneer Inn and the Banyan Tree, Lahaina, Maui

Sunday, August 12, 2012


What a beautiful place! It's amazing how much beauty can be packed into such a small space! Virtually vacant, pristine beaches hug rugged terrain thats perfect for hiking or getting your rental car stuck in. Flowing creeks are tickled by swinging vines, allowing the perfect place for crawdads and other dwellers to bask in Kauai's secret crevices. Waterfalls are decorated with happy heads bobbing below with the echo of a foreign tongued symphony. This magical isle is one worth visiting! I had the opportunity to stay on a sailboat on Hanalei Bay during my visit, accompanied by the finest quesadilla maker of the Pacific.

I am happy to say I am finally in an art gallery! The Ship Store Gallery in Kapa'a features my 8x10 painting of Wai'oli Hui'ia Church in Hanalei. I will attach an image of it as soon as I have one!