Tuesday, June 30, 2009


My future starts when I wake up every morning...
Every day I find something creative to do with my life.
~Miles Davis

Monday, June 29, 2009

LACMA and Tar Pits

Went to see Pompeii and the Roman Villa at LACMA over the weekend.  I am so glad I went! What an amazing culture, and the pieces brought in from Italy with the help of the National gallery were beautiful.  My favorite was a large 1st century marble of Venus/Aphrodite. She is fantastic.

You can't take pictures in the exhibit so a couple of quick sketches and the program was the best I could do.  I don't usually do the head phones because it can kind of kill it for me, but with the historical nature of the exhibit, I thought the info would be pretty interesting and give it more meaning.  It was four bucks with membership and I thought it was worth it.  The exhibit runs through October 4th.

Making my way back to my car ... tar bubbling up in the park, right next to people lounging and reading their books.  The Page Museum of the La Brea Tar Pits is supposed to be great.  One of these days I will finally check it out (and get a pedicure!).

The day after I went to LACMA, Your Bright Future: 12 Contemporary Artist from Korea opened so I will be heading back over there very soon!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Colorful Cacti

Who says cactus are boring?  These are from my parents' cactus garden in Ojai.  Love the first one ... very Dr. Seuss.

Drought tolerant doesn't mean cactus either ... if you are interested in saving water or just want to bring more birds and butterflies in your yard check out California Native Plant Society.  There are photos and lists of nurseries and all sorts of other information about native vs. invasive species.  Now if I only had my own yard!!! 

Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet 
and the winds long to play with your hair.
~Kahlil Gibran

Saturday, June 27, 2009

A New Green Guide

This might just be my favorite new thing online!  Actually it's more than a "Green" guide... it rates products for health, impact on the environment and philanthropy in the community.  Good Guide gives ingredients (where they have been released by the company) and whether they have been tested on animals.  If it gets a red 0 there is a good chance it has something that causes cancer.

It is SHOCKING to find out my supposedly "green" shampoo, by a company I thought was so great, got a terrible rating!  Conversely, who knew Suave would rate so high?

They are getting more info all the time and you can just type in your product name or type of product you are looking for and it's as easy as that.  It makes it easier to make healthy decisions.
Check out Good Guide!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Strange Day

Such a strange day, I thought I would post something colorful (and yet, still a bit strange!).  This painting took me what seemed like forever ... many, many hours.  It's from 2007 and it really brought me back to oil painting.  I can't believe that it was two years ago, but alas, I seem to say that about everything these days!


When you experience ... divine love, 
you will see no difference between flower and beast, 
between one human being and another.  
You will commune with all nature.


If you are an art lover, you will love Matisse/Picasso: Twin Giants of Modern Art. (2002)  They had such a fascinating relationship which began as rivals and ended up friends. What was most interesting was their influence on each others work.  I watched it twice!  This was in part because I'd been a little distracted with my bok choy, but I also just wanted to soak it in.  There were great interviews with family members, beautiful photos of the work and very interesting commentary by historians.  Can you tell I loved it??  And yes, it's on Netflix.

"The artist is a receptacle for emotions that come from all over the place:  from the sky, from the earth, from a scrap of paper, from a passing shape..." ~Pablo Picasso

"We should always see life as we did in childhood." ~ Matisse

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Flu bug and Movie reviews

I don't know what the flu bug looks like but I thought this felt appropriate!  


I have been a bit out of commission with some sort of flu bug, so I have been recovering with Netflix.  SO... I have a few fantastic recommendations.  If you have not seen Death at a Funeral and need a good laugh (and who doesn't really) then you MUST rent it! I hesitate to say much because I don't want to ruin it!  I finally saw Lars and the Real Girl last night and loved that, as well.  It's odd and touching and is a wonderful fable about compassion and community.  At the movies, go ahead and miss  My Life in Ruins  Sadly the first half actually had me cringing ... but go see The Hangover.  I was actually surprised ... very funny, even some moments of subtile humor but obviously not for the whole family.  

There are two more rentals I can suggest, if you haven't already seen them.  (I got very behind on movies for a while.)  They are both quiet and unique romances.  They are not typical Hollywood faire, (fare? fair?)  so if that's what you are looking for, rent something else.  I happened to love Girl in the Cafe, which is an HBO film and I was in the perfect mellow mood to see Once.  (If you aren't into singer/songwriter music it might not be your cup of tea.)

Stay well and take your vitamin C!!!!

To keep a lamp burning
we have to keep putting oil in it.
~Mother Teresa

Thursday, June 18, 2009


When the mind becomes quiet,
You feel nourished.
~Swami Chidvilasananda


New York

It was a long day, lots of phone calls, faxes ... time to rest and find peace, listen to music and look at something of beauty.

Beauty is one of the rare things
that do not lead to doubt of God.
~Jean Anouilh

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


The sun is finally out!  I don't want to jinx it or anything but when the sun comes out, it's time to break out the henna. (It's easier to show off when you aren't all bundled up!)  The first time I had mehndi done was in Pakistan in 1997!  I loved it and eventually started doing it myself for friends and parties. Henna is used for all sorts of medicinal purposes and is said to have spiritual properties as well.  Someone spiritual guru once told me that babies can even see the designs from inside the belly!  

Anyway, there is something that feels very ritualistically romantic about doing mehndi  ... very "Red Tent" and I just think it's beautiful. (Mehndi feet are ultra sexy)  These are a few I did a couple of years ago...

I am not currently doing events but if you are looking and are out west, check out this fabulous chick I know!  Her name is Merritt and she cant be found at Party Henna.  I just love her.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Italy and Valentino

Yesterday could be called "I miss Italy day." My good friend Rachel came over to join me in going to the Sunday farmers' market and the conversation eventually went to conspiring to find ways to live in Rome for an extended period of time ... which led to the browsing the internet of Villas outside of Rome...

Then I went to see "Valentino: The Last Emperor" which was mostly shot in, you guessed it... Rome. It was fantastic, by the way, and I highly recommend it! Check out the trailer.
Milan Last September...

Lake Como ~ The Villa Carlotta

Varenna ~ Lake Como

When I was in Rome I was so busy having a fabulous time I don't have the number of photos I would have expected. At some point I will post more of my Italy pictures including those from Rome and Assisi. I did buy a fabulous souvenir when I was in Rome. I went into a little bookstore near the Spanish Steps and purchased an English/Italian translation of Walt Whitman's "Leaves of Grass." ~Translated by Harold Bloom
Doesn't everything sound great in Italian?

Un canto di gioie
Oh cantare il canto piu` esultante!
Pieno di musica - pieno dell'essenza dell'uomo, della
donna, dell'infanzia!
Pieno di comuni mestieri - pieno di frumento e alberi.
Oh, per le voci degli animali - per la velocita` e il senso
dell'equilibrio dei pesci!
Per il cadere di gocce di pioggia in un canto!
Per la luce del sole e il movimento delle onde in un canto!
Oh, la giolia del mio spirito -e` uscito di gabbia sfreccia
come un fulmine!
Non basta avere questo pianeta e un tempo determinato,
avro` migliaia di pianeti e tutto il tempo.
A Song of Joys
O to make the most jubilant song!
Full of music - full of manhood, womanhood, infancy!
Full of common employments - full of grain and trees.
O for the voices animals - O for the swiftness and balance of fishes!
O for the dropping of raindrops in a song!
O for the sunshine and motion of waves in a song!
O the joy of my spirit - it is uncaged - it darts like lightening!
It is not enough to have this globe or a certain time,
I will have thousands of globes and all time.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Drawing Nudes

I love drawing the figure in ink and conte ... 
These drawings both make me want to get back to figure drawing and get back to being nude.
Warmer weather would help with the latter.

Trust this process of change.  Honor it, respect it, revere it.  You no longer have to wait for something to happen. Something is happening right now, within you.  Welcome the changes that can be yours. Let life help you as you take an active part in creating these changes.  Let the process become living, interactive and magical.
    ~Melody Beattie from Journey to the Heart

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Endangered Species

These works are the beginning of what will become part of a larger collection of endangered species. Unfortunately there are a lot to choose from in the animal kingdom as well as the plant world. The idea behind them has to do with seeing them as something holy and worth seeing or elevating to the level of icons. The "patterns" or "designs" are all related to the country or area of origin of the animal. They represent the human element and how we are connected to these creatures and ultimately responsible for the final outcome of their existence. These are all oil on wood panels.

Siberian Tiger

Echo Parakeet~ Mauritius

Endangered Orchids

Endangered Slipper Orchid

When they are in nature, people sense intuitively that the other kingdoms are living in harmony with universal law. In such an environment, it's easier for the heart to open, to become softer and live in tune with the earth.
~Wabun, Sun Bear's medicine helper

Sunday, June 7, 2009

June Gloom?

Once again June gloom is here and everything is a bit grey.  I am off to Ojai for some possible blue skies but until then, here is a bit of color! 

The sun shines not on us, but in us.  The rivers flow not past, but through us, thrilling, tingling, vibrating every fiber and cell of the substance of our bodies, making them glide and sing.
~John Muir

Saturday, June 6, 2009


This was a photo request from my sister Penny of Hercules and I at The Metropolitan Museum of Art when they opened the new antiquities wing. It is from April of two years ago. I miss New York! I am ready for trip East ...

from The Subject Tonight is Love
60 Wild and Sweet Poems

We are the guardians of His Beauty.
We are the protectors
Of the Sun.
There is only one reason
We have followed God into this world:
To encourage laughter, freedom, dance
And love....
...Every man, plant and creature in Existence,
Every woman, child, vein and note
Is a servant of our Beloved~
A harbinger of joy,
The harbinger of

I have been working so much in sepia tones I thought it was time to break out. I am loving purple and what it represents spiritually and historically. I also did a series of blue pieces which aren't "pretty" but they feel very emotional to me. Those will be up soon!

Friday, June 5, 2009


I am having a romance with peonies right now.  I love the pink (gorgeous right?) but it's nice to focus on the shapes and shadows.  They are quite sensual, aren't they?  This is my very first posting, by the way!