Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Guitarrita Sobre Azul

Guitarrita Sobre Azul/ Little Guitar on Blue
Acrylic on canvas/8x10"

Monday, September 28, 2009

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Lights, Camera, Design!

Project Runway took us to the movies this week, an improvement over last week challenge.
Designers had to choose a film genre and create (as well as dress, of course) a character to send down the runway.

No designer wanted the Western genre, but it was Epperson who delivered the design I would have given top honors to. His translation of Western was appropriate (we understood who the model was supposed to be) yet modern (his rough denim ruffles were divine!) and most importantly...entirely Epperson! You could look at that garment and tell immediately which of the designers it came from. Let's hope the poor man's luck for constantly being picked last translates to being one of the last standing.


Instead, the top prize of immunity went to Nicolas, who quite honestly bores me to tears. I am not sure what exactly the panel (still sans Nina and Ms. Kors) saw in it that wowed them so. It was really quite far as Ice Queens go.

Cutie Christopher delivered another impressive dress, this one fit for a Vampire Bride. He made a bold choice ignoring Tim's disapproval of going sleeveless with a Victorian gown. Christopher ultimately made the right choice, but Tim's call, of course was accurate. A good example of how the contestants occasionally receive mixed signals (mentoring vs. judging). Perhaps challenge guidelines should be more specific. Were the designs supposed to be true to their period (those who chose period) or were they to bend the rules and bring to life a vision merely inspired by a time and place?

In a shocking (at least to me) turn of events, Ra'mon was sent home after piecing together a last minute Hot Reptilian Mess. It seemed somewhat unfair to me that in a show where "Safe" is a dirty word, the failed, but imaginative above and beyond what it was being compared against, design lost to the "snoozefest". Ra'mon had a solid track record up until this challenge, and at this point in the competition (still a ways from top 5), that should have counted for something.

Hot Reptilian Mess.

Higher Education

I was the subject of a college class today (sort of) .
Scary, I know.
I was a guest artist for a college Art class. I set up an impromptu salon. The students were brought in by their instructor to view my work and apply what they've learned. And there was Q&A with moi. This is new territory for me, but I ended up being asked if I would be available to do this again, so all in all, I'd say it was a success.'s pics of the display. I think I did quite well, considering I had a school conference room to work with. LOL.

The majority of the work is my Latin Pop, however I was asked to bring a few pieces in different styles I've worked in as well.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Make Your Mark

Once again, fab artist and fellow blogger, Martha Marshall posted a question I couldn't resist.
What art tools would you be lost without? she wants to know.
While I create about 80% of my work with brushes, there are other "tools" I've collected which contribute a great deal to my painting.

Dowels are a favorite! Dots are a constant in my work. I often apply these with a variety of paint-dipped dowels.

Circles and squares (as well as other shapes) are often found in my abstract work. I like using everything from bottle tops, lids and corrugated cardboard pieces (packing supplies) to the rim of small empty boxes.

Even mascara brushes can be great for applying (or lightly scratching into) paint.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Monday, September 21, 2009

Dirty Little Secrets

I know we are all Serious Fine Artists, and as such, some would say we are to use only the creme-de-la-creme of art supplies. Certain more expensive brands of paint do offer better coverage/flexibility, this is true.
But in tough economic times we all must stretch our dollar and that goes beyond the grocery and department store. For artists, this also applies to our favorite store: The Art Supply Store, where we take that leap across the aisle to enter the often (and unfairly) maligned "Craft Supply Zone".
(cue Twilight Zone theme music!)

Delta Cermcoat paints must be one of the Fine Artist's biggest Dirty Little Secret. LOL!
I see it pop up (constantly and consistently) in the background of a lot of folk's studio pics.
They're really a great way to supplement your arsenal (and generally have pretty good opacity).
I just love 'em.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Yesterday's News

This week's Project Runway brought us the "unconventional materials" challenge. Newspapers, this time. To be honest I just wasn't all that excited by any of it.
Johnny sent a dress down the runway that was uninspired and lazy. I've seen more fashion at the bottom of a birdcage. He lied about what happened to his first design (which Tim trashed) and once again cried over the hardship of beating addiction. WE GET IT JOHNNY YOU WERE AN ADDICT. Our sympathy for you ran dry episodes ago. If you'd used beating your past addiction as something to gain inspiration and strength from we'd still be there with you. Instead you brought it up, if not as an excuse then to divert attention from lackluster design, every time you failed to rise to the challenge.


Johnny's departure resulted in Emarie being sent home. I've made no bones about my thoughts on Emarie's model-potential. She does seem like a sweet girl and I felt bad to see the girls crying for her in the green room.
I felt a bit disturbed, however to see Ebony fall to pieces (literally on the floor sobbing uncontrollably) at the model apartment when Emarie said goodbye.

I'd be lying if I said I wasn't enjoying Models of the Runway. I'm a sucker for just about any modeling competition. To make the Models a bit more interesting they should have the designers learn what their challenge will be BEFORE picking their model. Then they might have more incentive then to switch on occasion because certain models might fit their vision of that challenge more, thus adding interest to the modeling competition.

And when they had the Models as Clients challenge, the models should have been able to PICK their designer and that would've stirred things around as well.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Fierce Fridays: The Beauty of Dark Skin

With models of color missing from the pages of high profile fashion magazines once more, and luxury brands dropping or refusing to use models of color in their campaigns (Allegedly due to the recession. Lame!) it's refreshing to see editorial spreads like this one.
There's no real reason I'm posting this (this isn't a "major" mag and probably won't change anything in the industry) other than I think these girls are GOR-geous and I think the shoot is cool (the kid in spongebob and crocs cracks me up!), so I'm sharing.
These clothes wouldn't look the same if it weren't for the beautiful color of their skin and I'm glad that is what got them booked instead of the other way around.

If I started discussing the many other levels that make me love this shoot ( for me, it touches on consumerism, gay marriage, adoption) we could be here all day.

More pics!

I have a serious case of “skin-envy”. Being a pale red haired lady, I have longed to be able to wear bright coloured all over print outfits offset by divine dark skin. But alas, this shall not be. An example of my skin-envy is featured in the latest issue of Oyster Magazine. “Nu Clean” is shot by Milos Mali and showcases how technicolour, neon pop, ornate brocade and rainbow hip hop fusion can blend together successfully when worn by the gorgeous Kuei and Akeer.
With outstanding styling by Paul Bui, the inspiration seems a mix of M.I.A and Santogold with Boy George circa 1980! Whilst the girls pose in a decidedly egalitarian approach to the styling, labels like Josh Goot, Tina Kalivas, Zimmermann, Firetrap and Adidas mix with Jimmy Choo, Burberry, Gucci and Marni to form the kaleidoscope of colour and texture.
Milos has used a super kitsch, eye candy approach to this shoot featured in and around a grimy suburbia house with a “fashionista squatter” feel to it. Boring, everyday “chores” are given a new lease on life with this duo; cooking eggs in the make do kitchen, knitting on the retro couch, playing on the bed with the carnival won oversized teddy bear and hitting that piƱata off the clothes line in the backyard! - Kate Vandermeer

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

One Heart Giclee on Canvas

"One Heart" now available as a Limited Edition Giclee on canvas.
I will donate 10% of proceeds from sale of prints 1 through 50 to the Human Rights Campaign.

One Heart
Limited Edition Giclee on canvas/16x20"

Encore Giclee on Canvas

Now available as a giclee print on canvas:

Encore (After Midnight Reprise)
Giclee on canvas/16x20"
Gallery wrap/pre-stretched and ready to hang!

Friday, September 11, 2009

The Client Is Not Always Right

This week's challenge was one we've seen before: Model as Client. This time, however, the outfits were intended to showcase the models at an industry event.
I wonder if by "industry event" they meant Heidi got her assistant to make some phone calls and see if the Ed Hardy folk wanted some free drinks that night.

Althea took top prize this week by outfitting her model (gorgeous and fierce cat-walker, Tanisha) in a 3 piece ensemble that was both chic and youthful.

As expected, some designers took too much direction from their models and lost their aesthetic in the process.

Johnny, for example, made his model Emarie look even more average than she already does.
Seriously, how did this girl get onto a modeling competition???
I know, that's awful and bitchy and one should not say things like that. But, really...
I'm sure she's a smart and lovely girl. I can see her working with children on some capacity.
There, I've said something nice to balance the not-so.

But it was Qrystl (or was it Krystl? or Xrystl?) who laid the biggest egg by not only averaging-down her model Valerie with a snoozefest of a dress, but by ageing her (according to Heidi) 10 to 15 years!
I found this to be particularly tragic considering that Valerie's looks are reminiscent of the beautiful Lynn Whitfield. Unfortunately she appears to be about the same age.
Ok, ok, I exaggerate! Valerie looks great!
...for a woman in her late 30's/early 40's. Not the "freshest" face the modeling industry has ever seen, is all I'm saying.

I should've tried out for She's Got The Look!

And so we bade farewell to Qrystl, whose aesthetic, quite honestly, always seemed a bit more Queens of Comedy than Haute Couture. Maybe the Queens will do a Reunion tour and call on her. We can all hope.

From Qrystl's Previous Work portfolio on

If Kid Rock had a bridal line, I suspect it might look something like this.

Seriously. Did a Project Runway producer loose his damn mind??!
All this photo is missing is a pole and a lunch buffet in the background ('cause we're talking day-shift entertainment with this lovely ensemble).

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Gascot Tees Updated

I've just updated my CafePress shop.
Please feel free to stop by and take a look! :-)


"One Heart"

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Paloma en Nube 2

Paloma en Nube (Dove in Cloud): Orange
Acrylic on canvas/8x10"

Monday, September 7, 2009

Shoe Abuse

We were at the Salvation Army this past weekend. Yes, the Salvation Army. Where else do you think Betina finds such awesome vintage threads? LOL.

Anyway, we spotted this cute pair of Choos.

Don't get me started on the fact that I think $295 is too much for shoes at the Salvation Army (regardless of prestigious brand), but YOU DO NOT WRITE THE PRICE ON THE SOLE IN GOLD MARKER!!!

Price tags are like $4 for 100 at Staples.
That is so damn trashy!

Friday, September 4, 2009

We Interrupt This Project Runway Re-cap...

with a few words about this week's Models of the Runway:
Well DAMN if Fatma didn't go ahead and get her ass picked by the Vagina Monologues lady! HA!
She's a total bitch (or perhaps "misunderstood", tee-hee) but you gotta love that shit!

Evil Fatma

Vagina Monologues Lady Designer

If I was one of the designers I'd be fighting for Kojii (my personal favorite) or Celine!

Goddess Kojii

Gorgeous Celine

This week's Project Runway challenge was about surfing. Bo-ring! You wouldn't have Beach Blanket Project Runway had the show stayed put in NYC. Someone must have come to their senses so they threw in an avant-gard look into the mix of things. Because everyone knows surfing and avant-gard go hand in hand.

In the end Ra'mon was picked the winner (deservedly so) and Mitchell was sent packing, as expected. Wow...wasn't that exciting? Here's hoping for a better challenge next week!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Website Re-Launch!

Ladies and Gents,
I've redesigned my website. The new look is a lot fresher and more polished, I think.
Please feel free to stop by and check it out:

Inspiration Board

The subject of Inspiration Walls/Boards was recently brought up by my fellow artist/blog-friend Martha Marshall.
Next to my "painting station" hangs a bulletin board. On that board I tack everything from my own sketches and print outs of pieces I've painted and sold to magazine clippings cut out of fashion or interior decor publications...catalogs too. Textiles and patterns are a great inspiration.
I also keep images of works by masters and famous artists who inspire me around as points of reference. They help to kick start me when I hit a creative wall.

To my Right:

On Sketches:
I am not a meticulous sketcher. I often look at sketches more as "notes" on ideas I've had rather than actual drawings (though I know that technically they are drawings). My sketches are usually quick and happen on the spot (notice there's a napkin with a sketch on it on my inspiration board).

Art books never remain clean and pristine once they enter my studio. They are a constant source of inspiration as well and almost always end up with paint splatter on them. I wouldn't have it any other way.
To my left:

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Ooo La La La!

We just got home from An Intimate Evening With Teena Marie at the Birchmere Music Hall in Alexandra, VA. This show was nothing short of an amazing acoustic experience! It's not your typical "unplugged" performance, but rather up close and personal (literally) and filled with anecdotes that are both hilarious and touching.
The format is somewhat unusual (but completely effective!) as the set doesn't even kick off with music as one would expect, but instead begins with the suave and funny Lee Cadena serving as MC. Throughout the evening he and Teena banter with great ease and charm. Ms. Marie then takes the stage and chats candidly with the crowd for a good while. During this time she invites members of the audience to come up on stage and ask her questions which she answers as only she could (The Tee is one funny Lady!). Then the music begins and she takes us down memory lane with a beautiful rendition of Smokey Robinson's "Ooh Baby, Baby".
Teena's voice is every bit as rich and alive today and her amazing range remains intact. She swooned us with hits like "If I Were A Bell", "Out On A Limb", "Dear Lover", "Portugese Love" and, of course "Fire and Desire". She also touched on perhaps-lesser-known (but personal favorites of mine) songs like "Wild Horses" (from "Passion Play", one of her least known, but best albums) on the piano and "How Can You Resist It" on acoustic guitar. And don't think for one second that the fact that this was an acoustic set (guitars, piano, keyboard (Johnny Angel) and bass (Douglas Grigsby) only) kept Ms. Marie from bringing the FUNK. She had us up on our feet dancing to classics like "Square Biz", "I'm Just A Sucker For Your Love" and "Lovergirl" too!
Teena Marie is an energetic and gracious performer who gives her all, running through the crowd at times and even serenading a few folk who were celebrating anniversaries.
This was a night I won't soon forget.

Be sure to pick up Teena Marie's latest cd "Congo Square"!
In stores now.