Friday, January 16, 2009


"What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything? It will be a hard pull for me; the tide rises high, almost to the lips and perhaps higher still, how can I know? But I shall fight my battle, and sell my life dearly, and try to win and get the best of it." - by Vincent Van Gogh (1881)

HAPPY NEW YEAR! I hope you survived the first few weeks of January. Well, I did! Despite of the the endless gloomy economic news, I am still painting. Daily, I watch the economic news because I think it's very important to creative people. When times are good, artists, writers,photographers and musicians get the support they need, enriching city life in unquantifiable ways. But when the economic woes are getting global or the rich lose interest, artists are among the first to suffer. Today we we're hearing predictions of fewer arts, movies, books, plays, and exhibitions to support new works just when we need creative thinking. Of course, artists have had it rough for centuries, their livelihoods vulnerable to the whims of the powerful and wealthy patrons. Am I discourage to paint more and continue my art goal "Studio 65" this year? Nope! My goal is to keep on painting. Like Van Gogh, despite of hard times he never stopped painting and did the best of it. I believe good times will roll again.
1. I planned and conceived my first solo art show when the financial outlook was rosier. About four years before the actual date September 27, 2008 came around. Little did I know that the stock market would be shattered the week during my art show but I decided to forge ahead. It was a successful event despite of the shaky economy. If you want to see my art show please go back to my older post and view my October 2008 entries.
2. Most of my oil paintings during my art show are NOT FOR SALE. However, I "SOLD" one oil painting that is not part of my theme. In this kind of rumbling economy, people buys painting? Yes! The price was so good and the money helped cover the huge expenses I incurred during my own solo art show. It was worth all the expenses and hard work.
3. This is the painting that I sold for a thousand dollar. I painted this for one of my sisters. Julie wanted me to paint this St. Petersburg cathedral in Russia, which she visited in her many previous trips. It took me almost 2 years to create this detailed painting. I knew every nooks and crannies of this saintly cathedral. I thought I will not be able to finish it because, I got so....bored painting the details. I put it aside for months and when the mood came back I worked on it again. I got a better view of things when I didn't work on it for sometime. When I see the painting again, it looks and seems fresh and new. During this time, I fall in love with SAINT PETE and decided to keep it. I didn't like to sell it anymore. But Julie was persistent. I gave in and she finally wrote the $$$thousand dollar check during my art show.

4. This is my sister Julie and I during my art show. This painting is now beautifully hanging inside her lovely home. "Thanks Julie for patronizing and loving my art. You're a wonderful and generous sister."
5. On October 25, 2008 my design for the cover of the Filipino-American Association 25th anniversary souvenir program was a winner. I was very happy even for a small reward like $50.00. It's not big but the publicity and recognition was more than rewarding.
6.Last November 4, 2008, during the 6th anniversary of KCS (Kalusugan Community Services) of San Diego, California, I donated my huge oil painting "Thanksgiving - Fil-American Style." In appreciation for my donation, this health group gave me a robust tax write off. Even in this jittery art market, surprisingly there is some monetary reward. I posted this "Thanksgiving" painting last November.
7. On November 9-15, 2008, I joined my husband during his annual conference to Longboat Key/Florida. After the conference was over, we were invited to dine with his relatives in a Thai restaurant at Sarasota. One of my husband's cousin has an American girlfriends who works at an art gallery in Sarasota, an affluent community. I asked her...Are people still buying paintings in this kind of bad economy?" Her answered was very encouraging..."Yes, they do. I am surprised that people here continue to patronize art and not holding on to their money."
7. I am confident that ART is a good investment for our money. How the sagging economy will affect the art world is a big question out there? When stocks, housing, savings bond, mutual funds, etc. fall apart..... ART..... is a sure thing....ART..... is forever.