Sunday, June 30, 2019


A friend that I made thru blogging,
a local So.Cal. expert in the art of Shibori,
takes an eager group of students to Japan every year and always returns with treasures.
This year in her shop,
 I was able to purchase many of the pieces listed below in her letter. 
She bundled the letter around the precious remnants,
and they did not disappoint.
Below are shoots and close-ups of all that I bought.
I've been thinking about what to use them for.
 So far I have a favorite pair of jeans that the holes have become too large in,
 I think I might cut off a piece of each fabric to mend them with.
After that I'm not sure.

the family crest button a top an indigo dyed loosely woven fabric

a vintage piece of boro cloth

two different pieces of Ikat dyed and woven fabric
close up below

two more pieces of Ikat
Just a note.
I did learn the art of Ikat dyeing and weaving in college (1979),
and I remember how extremely time consuming and difficult it was 
so it is fabulous to see the real thing in person.

honestly, I'm not sure what this cloth is called.
got to do some research.
but isn't it lovely?
you can see how old it is where the two worn areas are.

This last one is my favorite because it's my go-to technique to do with my students
in the Beginning 3-D class.
The favorite of all the Shibori techniques that Glennis taught us.
This cloth was all all hand stitched, pulled tightly then dipped into the Indigo vat.
When dry the stitching was removed to reveal the design.
This piece was so expertly done,
so clear in it's design, and the dye so perfectly applied,
rich and dark.
When I saw it in the packet my eyes just popped with happiness!

And I already know the first thing I will do with snall pieces of each remnant,
I'm going to mend/patch a loved pair of holey jeans.
Anding it to my list right now!

Saturday, June 29, 2019


the colors of nature grab me everytime.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019


pencil on paper 
(this is a xerox copy of the original drawing)

Look what I just found when I was cleaning out my files from years past,
one of your mommy's drawings from back in the day!
There is no date and I've forgotten what year I had her.
I'm guessing late 1980's or early 1990's.
I want to say that I think that's my T.A. Lester Virtudazo who modeled for us.
Let me know if your mom remembers.
I hope you see this or one of your friends does and let's you know I've posted it
so you can share it with your mom.
Notice your mother's score?
A 5/5,
She was a terrific student just like you.
The apple doesn't fall far from the tree as they say.
Sorry I didn't make graduation,
I was on the floor, 
turned upside down, 
cleaning out a drawer 
and when I got up my stupid Vertigo had me spinning in my classroom
right before the ceremony.
I didn't trust myself to walk down the aisle in front of you guys at the beginning of the ceremony
without veering to the right.
As it was I barely made it home that afternoon.
I had to drive like a little old lady going 50 mph on the freeway.
please thank your parents for the huge gift basket they put in the teacher's lounge.
I took the chocolate biscottis.

Sunday, June 23, 2019


scratchboard, nubs/pen holder & watercolors

Every year the kids are intimidated but excited to try this completely new medium.
They've seen the results from years before and they want to give it a go as well.
I buy the nicest scratchboard I can find because if you don't it won't hold up to the watercolor.
I get mine at Art Supply Warehouse in Westminster, Ca. 
I'm sure they take online orders. 
You will also need two different types of nibs that fit into a pen holder.
One is pointy and the other is a scoop shape.

tiny amplers done by seniors Christian Balbido and William Tan
1 1/2 " by 3"
2" by 2 1/2"

I start the kids by demoing the two different nibs on a tiny piece of scratchboard.
Then I give them all a small sample piece and have them choose a subject 
and practice working on this little piece.
Then they practice their watercoloring over top.
In the meantime at home they are searching for a great subject for their larger piece.

Here is another sampler.
It looks enormous but is really very petite.
Probably about 2 1/2"  by 3" at the most.
I believe this kitty was done by Sarah Oh as her practice.

These are the larger pieces from last school year.
Some of these photos didn't turn out as colorful as I was hoping for
so I apologize ahead of time.
The best resources to work from are photos are animals because of their fur.
Most of the nib strokes are done with crosshatched or hatchure lines.
Some of the kids like to incorporate pointillism as well.
In this gorgeous owl by junior Angelica Luza, 
you can see her watercolor much better along with its range of value.
They had to bring in range in both the drawing and the painting.

These dogs above were beautifully done by senior Sarah Oh.
You can see the pointillism in the backdrop.
The kids were also required to make their own matt.
I really like the thin strip of gold that Sarah put on before the black matt.

And senior Christian Balbido choose to do his own adorable pup.
Loving the scale he worked to as well as how he cropped the piece within the matt.

 This regal and incredibly gorgeous piece is the work of senior Tiffany Chen.
I feel this work really shows off her amazing drawing skills and attention to detail.
I so wish there would have been an art competition at the end of the year.
I would have entered this piece.
Exceptional work Tiff!!

WAnd w end with this brilliant work by senior Mary Kim.
She spent so many hours on this work and it was worth the wait.
She wasn't able to complete it when it was due 
so this is the first time the kids from her class are seeing the finished product.
Exactly a year later because I'm so tardy getting these pieces posted.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019


I'm so thrilled to share that my hardworking daughter and her equally hared working boyfriend 
were able to save up enough money to buy their first home together,
with a little bit of help from all the parentals.
And she's only 8 mins. away by car!
Woo Hoo!!!!
(I'm trying so hard not to go over everyday to see if she needs any help)
Danielle has been working since she was 16 and saving her money
for a down-payment and she finally made it.
I couldn't be more proud of her!
She was also promoted to manager and gaining a lot of service industry experience
and thinking of opening her own business.
She is on the way to making her dreams come true.
Their home is a two bedroom ,
two bath that has been redone,
and the kids are making it their own.
It's got a nice sized backyard, 
big enough for a pool if they ever choose to put one in.
But right now their two puppies love playing in the lush grass back there.
It's in a cute and safe neighborhood on a cul-d-sac 
which is also great if any grand-babies come along.
Hint, hint!
And one of the best things are the garden and home improvements that need doing together.
She's wanting to learn how to do things, 
and we've made many runs to Home Depot for plants and mulch for the backyard,
and nuts and bolts for hanging things.
We've dug weeds and dead headed roses together,
arranged furniture and hung decorative pieces on the walls.
She has even put a few of my clay pieces around her home.
I'm a happy woman!
She has a perfect side yard in full sun where her brother 
is going to build her several raised vegetable gardens
because she is also learning to cook as well.
Life is good!
The kids and my grandson & granddaughter pups
in their backyard.

Sunday, June 16, 2019


Meet the newest member of our family,
She is a rescue and we think she is part German Shepard and part Labrador Retriever.
My daughter and her boyfriend adopted her yesterday to keep their other pup Granger company.
And so far so good, 
they are getting along.
She is already pretty big and has huge webbed feet,
so we think she might enjoy the water.
Jim and I met her today and she is a doll,
very low key and loves to snuggle.
Her name is not set in stone,
so we will see if Penny sticks.
More pix to come I'm sure.

Monday, June 10, 2019


oil & water pastels, poster board, & various papers

My posting has been pretty eradicate lately.
I apologize,
I've been very distracted
(more on that at a later date).
But I'm going to try harder to get at least 3-4 posts up a week.
That's my goal anyways,

I'm very excited to share with all of you these gorgeous & creative portraits
done last school year by my 2nd year art students.
The kids were asked to find an interesting frontal portrait from a magazine or the internet,
in color and blown up fairly large so their teacher could see it.
The kids these days want to work off their phones
 and that's just too small for me to see their subjects to be able to help them.
I asked them to fracture these portraits into at least 5 different pieces.
They also had to enlarge the artpiece to at least 16 by 20 inches.
And they could choose to do the work in either oil or water pastel or both.
The students solutions are so well thought out and executed as you will see.

In fact,
the critical thinking in this first one by senior Sarah Oh is beyond creative.
We all loved the way she chose to fracture her work with floating bubbles.
And she asked if she could bring in additional media and I told her to go for it.
I see pen & ink, watercolor, prismacolors, & charcoal.
I know you check the blog,
did I forget anything?
And then her background complimented the portrait so well.
Do you see the netting she glued down in the backdrop?
And did you notice that her bubbles are going off the edge of the format?
All are wonderful attention to details and just plain great designing.
Bravo young woman!!

Next we have senior Tiffany Chen.
Such a soft, lovely work.
I especially enjoyed the thin rice paper  she cut and glued onto the blue background paper,
makes it even more optical and dimensional.
But my favorite part are the petals of the daisies floating thru the work,
as well as how she built up the dimensional flowers.
I believe she used prismacolors for the value ranges on the petals.

But it was this one that all gravitated to.
It was so different then the others and was the work of senior Mary Kim,
an incredibly gifted artist.
The portrait she drew of her boyfriend was so realistic that we thought it was a photograph.
Here it is below.
She used oil pastel.
Instead of fracturing the face,
Mary chose to fracture the backdrop only,
something that no one had thought to do before.
I so love when the kids give me additional ideas for the future!
I have a give away area of old pieces of art that I don't teach with anymore.
And last year I put out several pieces of demo art that local Fullerton Ca. artist Mary Zarbano
had demonstrated Monoprinting on in the 1980's.
She had done them on thin parchment paper that was yellowing and falling apart.
So Mary plucked them from the pile and fractured and collaged them into her backdrop.
Brilliant idea I thought.
It's so great when the kids can repurpose.

Thursday, June 6, 2019


Red Amaryllis

Yellow & White Bearded Iris

Fuschia Geranimum

Ketchup & Mustard Rose

Tuesday, June 4, 2019


Wall of Wisteria where I buy my latte

Tulips growing out of a log

Vinca groundcover going up our side lot in bloom

and more  scrumptious Tulips
(check out those ruffled edges)