Monday, October 21, 2013


"If God would choose a plant to represent him, I think he would choose of all plants the cactus. The cactus has all the blessings he tried, but mostly failed, to give to man. Let me tell you how. It has humility, but it is not submissive. It grows where no other plant will grow. It does not complain when the sun bakes it back or the wing tears it from the cliff or drowns it in the dry sand of the desert or when it is thirsty. When the rain comes it stores water for the hard times to come. In good times and in bad it will still flower. It protects itself against danger, but it harms no other plant. It adapts perfectly to almost any environment. It has patience and enjoys solitude. In Mexico there is a cactus that flowers only once every hundred years and at night. This is saintliness of an extraordinary kind, would you not agree? The cactus has properties that heal the wounds of men and from it come potions that can make man touch the face of God or stare into the mouth of hell. It is the plant of patience and solitude, love and madness, ugliness and beauty, toughness and gentleness. Of all plants, surely God made the cactus in his own image?"- Anonymous 
SIZE: 12" x 24"
SIZE: 12" x 24"
I painted these two cactus oil painting while I continue to cope with my challenging hearing loss. The beauty and strength of the cactus inspired me to go on w/ my difficult life. As always art becomes my therapy. I did enjoy painting these beauties.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013


"Bloom where you're planted.'" - Mary Engelbreit

BLOOM WHERE YOU'RE PLANTED- One of my favorite woman author -Sarah Ban Breathnach said....."I have discovered that if we are to flourish as creative beings, we must bloom wherever we are planted. Right now, you might not have the perfect career, home, or relationship. Few of us do. But if you have the gift of today, you've got another chance to re-create your circumstances." How true! Like her I'd like to bloom where I am. Thank God, I am not a plant but a painter. My art career is promising. I am grateful that each day is a chance to improve my creativity and painting fresher, newer and better.
PURPLE PALETTE This is a very pretty color. Like deep blues, purple is also a dark color and considered moody or sometimes even threatening. Purple comes in many different names like violet, lilac, lavender and amethyst. On the other hand purple is the complementary color of yellow. These two colors are directly across from each other on the color wheel. My favorite artist Vincent Van Gogh did most of his famous impressionistic paintings with complimentary or contrasting colors such as purple and yellow, red, and green, orange and blue. Complimentary colors are vibrating and very effective in lively painting.

SIZE: 18" x 24"
In this cactus flower painting, I used complimentary colors like deep purple and deep yellow -orange. It looks stunning to the eyes. I parted w/ this beautiful painting last year. I gave it as a appreciation and thank you gift to a dear friend who is a very nice and helpful dentist. We met
Dr. Mendoza through the Fil-American Association of Sta. Clarita Valley. We remained good friends over the years, together w/ his husband Edgar.
When my husband and I moved to San Diego, he didn't change dentist. It was a long drive to get to Sta. Clarita for dental treatment, but because Dr. Mendoza was so accommodating, it was not a problem. Dr. Mendoza treated my hubby liked a member of her own family. When he had many dental problems, she's a dentist who's always there for him. We truly appreciated her labor of love. What do you give to someone who has everything? I know our painting will make her happy, so I gave her this purple cactus flower painting.

 "Carry out a random act of kindness, with no exception of reward, safe in the knowlwdge that one day someone might do the same for you." -Princess Diana

Sunday, September 1, 2013


"Nature furnishes a rich assortment of shapes, textures, colors, values and movements to choose from....I paint to interpret nature, not to copy it." - Edward E. Herrmann

A VISIT TO THE WESTERN ART MUSEUM Many years ago, while visiting the Gene Autry Western Art Museum in Los Angeles, California, I bought a greeting card with a view of an impressionistic landscape with cactus. I was inspired by its vibrant colors and one day I painted this Southwest colorscape. Down below was the outcome was my version of the original. I was fascinated by the tender hues of turquoise cactus , the brightest pink burst of tiny flower, the slender thorns that remind one to keep a distance. The emerging background of deep purple plateau and vast sky golden with heat had captured me too.

SIZE: 16" x 20"
MEDIUM: Oil on Canvas
Personal collection of the artist

ABOUT THE ORIGINAL ARTIST The original vivid impressionistic landscape was painted by Edward Herrmann. He was inspired by the magic of the changing seasons, the variegated influences of light and Nature's mutable moods.The painter has bold brush strokes and careful eye for detail. He strives for a deep sense of vitality. His paintings invite one to move through the rich texture, to experience the emotional resonances of a particular landscape. He said "A painting changes as one's thought change. It moves as the viewers mind moves, becoming alive only through the person looking at it." Someday, I hope I'll have the chance to meet this artist and tell him how much I was inspired by his painting. Copying someones art work is a great compliment.

Thursday, August 8, 2013


"Beauty is altogether in the eyes of the beholder" - Margaret Wolfe Hungerford

A GREEN PALETTE Of all the the desert plants, I find cactus very interesting subject to paint. The bigger they are, the wider my imagination goes. It's true that beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. I might see beauty is huge saguaros but to you it might look dull. That's okay, because we all have different perceptions and perspectives on things we view. And many artists like to paint different things. Some artists like to paint candies, floral, or landscape. Others paint only what collectors would like to buy. They cater to what others like, not what they like. I like to paint subjects that's are dear to my heart. My choice has to do with many personal experiences. During many trips to the Southwest specially Arizona, I was inspired and fascinated by the beauty of cactus. I have done lots of studies on cactus and painted many of them.

SIZE: 18" x 24"
MEDIUM: Oil on Canvas
I have many cactus oil paintings at home and this is one of my favorites. This is one of my best cactus paintings. It is realistically done and copied from an Arizona travel magazine. I am an artist who couldn't paint and rely on my memory. I need a live model or a good photo, or a page from a magazine or calendar to work from. This method works for me. Some artist have different ways. Whatever we choose to work with we are free to do whatever we feel works. There is no absolute rules for artists. Sometimes experimenting and doing things differently work like magic. I meticulously painted the thistles on this cactus painting. My right hand got numbed from hundreds of tiny brush strokes. Some thinks that painting is like playing but it's hard work too. It like being pricked with some actual thistles. Some of you might think this is just an ordinary painting or not original. But I am okay with that. I painted this cactus for myself and my family. This painting brings lots of pleasures and good memories of the happy trips we had in the Southwest (New Mexico, Arizona and Texas). This painting matches my Southwest theme and color at home.
LIVING ROOM This is our living room where my favorite cactus oil paintings are on display. The "Cactus With Flowers" is on the right side. Our home's theme color is sage, peach and purple. For me these colors are beautiful and alive. Others may not be fond of it but liked classical colors like blue and green. I like green too. Sage is the green shade for Southwest theme. Whatever color you choose to live with or paint, what matters is that you're happy with your colors. Green is beautiful but if you don't like it, that's still OKAY!


CLOSE TO OUR HEARTS: Every time my husband and I took a trip up to San Francisco, we always stopped by the Harris Ranch Restaurant for lunch. It's located on Fwy#5 going up north. This ranch got a restaurant and hotel. The restaurant was famous for it's excellent steak and other delicious beef menu. It had a cattle ranch nearby.
The HRR had a Southwest architecture and decorations. I loved looking at the many cactus's oil paintings on display in the lobby, hallways and private rooms. The particular painting above was one of my favorites. The artwork was painted by a woman artist but I couldn't remember her name. I took a photo of this painting and did my own version below.
SIZE: 20" x 24"
MEDIUM: Oil On Canvas

My oil painting was inspired by the painting shown above. This was my version of the original painting. Copying some body's painting was frown by others but I did not  see anything wrong with it. In old times, many artists copied art works by the masters. It was often encouraged. I thought that if one could copy well, that's a great talent. To be a good artist one needed to practice, study and copy over and over again. It's not a crime learning from others artists who came before us. Studying their style and technique was very helpful.

This trio of cactus was a beautiful painting that I was happy and proud to display in our living room. Painting the same subject over and over again, never bored me. Whenever I look... ..meaning.... really looking..... with admiration and appreciation with my whole heart..... the paintings and the world becomes a more fascinating, inspiring and COLORFUL place to live in. Try it!

Monday, August 5, 2013


"Seeing is an art that can be learned by all of us." - Alexandra Stoddard
ART OF SEEING: According to Alexandra few really know how to see and as a result are unaware of the majesty and beauty around them. But seeing can be learned, and those who learn to see well, the world becomes an entirely different place. Life is suddenly rich with promise, full of light, color, texture and harmony. I agreed with her 100 %.

SIZE: 16" x 20"
MEDIUM: Oil On Canvas

 One of my Southwest oil paintings hanging in our home. Seeing a field of cactus was an ordinary setting but if viewed from a painted window and arranged in attractive composition, it's more inviting. A window, an ordinary subject. But when you add an area rug, pot of cactus, skulls and red chili's hanging from the ceiling it became more attractive. This window invited us to look beyond the ordinary. On the horizon was a field of cactus with yellow flower plus blue sky. There were many numerous things painted here but  surely unnoticed by most viewer. Why? Seeing as they said was an art. We have to learn how to be more receptive and appreciative of the beauty around us.


Sunday, August 4, 2013


"When you have a great and difficult task, something perhaps almost impossible, if you only work a little at a time, every day a little, suddenly the work will finish itself." – Isak Dinesen

SIZE: 16" x 20"
MEDIUM: Oil On Canvas

The above painting was the first cactus oil painting I did during my Art Class at the Sr. Center. Surprisingly, it came out good and realistically look like a cactus. With constant practice, my oil painting started looking more beautiful and professionally done.

I love cactus. Our house and backyard were filled w/ them. So easy to take care. As I struggled w/ my challenging hearing loss, I compared my life to a cactus. Like the cactus, I thrived despite of my difficult and dry life on a dessert highways called "Hearing Loss (oops...I meant Lane.") 
My blue days were many. To fill up my those long and lonely days while my husband was at work and my children were at school, I practiced and painted more and more each day. Painting became my outlet. Painting made me alive and happy. Luckily, I thrived on solitude like a beautiful “Solitaire.”
Progressively, I became a serious artist, sharpening my artistic skill once again. I eagerly looked forward to my once a week class at the Sr. Center. At the same time, I enrolled at the International Correspondence School to update my rusting knowledge about fine arts. Most art homework where done at home.
Although I worked for TV Fanfare for a decade, my paste-up job didn't give me lots of room for creativity and artistic skill. It's a very mechanical job.