Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy Blue Moon and New Year!

Passion Flower Birds
Originally uploaded by Agave Latte
Just a hint of my newest Pastel called "Passion Flower Birds". This painting will be on display at Mission Trails Regional Park for the Month of January. Details below in the last post. I bought the clay bird in Santa Fe, New Mexico years ago at the Indian Market. The passion fruit was grown in my garden. The vine has a mind of it's own....and sprouts up everywhere! It's a weird and wonderful plant.

Monday, December 28, 2009

"Sunday Morning Walk I"

Sunday Morning Walk I
Originally uploaded by Agave Latte
This transparent watercolor will be part of my exhibit at Mission Trails Regional Park in January. Here are the details:

Mission Trails Center Gallery Invitational Exhibit

“The Creative Seven”
January 2-29
Reception: January 10th, 1 to 4pm
Mission Trails Regional Park Visitor and Interpretive Center Gallery
One Father Junipero Serra Trail San Diego, CA 92119
619.668.3280 Open Daily: 9:00 - 5:00 p.m.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

J&J Ranch

Many Thanks to Jill and Jerry for a CA Winter Wonderland adventure! We had a blast at their Rancho, singing Mexican songs, dancing, eating yummy food, shooting pool and best of all relaxing with good friends....

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Hummer Tree of Life

Hummer Tree of Life
Originally uploaded by Agave Latte

I'm pleased to announce that I'll be teaching at Art Unraveled , a mixed media conference held in Arizona August 2010! I will be teaching a workshop called "Batik Flora and Fauna, a mixed media approach"
Hope you can join me! This will be a relaxing, fun workshop where you can play with watercolors, colored pencils, and acrylic.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Funky horse

Funky horse
Originally uploaded by Agave Latte
Along the route of the Dixon Studio Tour I spotted this tall funny horse just as happy as could be. What a great attitude!

Apple Farm in Dixon, New Mexico

Apple Farm
Originally uploaded by Agave Latte
My friend invited me to this wonderful place in New Mexico for my birthday weekend. Her cousin and his wife live there off of a secluded dirt road enriched with pinon, sage, apple New Mexico air. The farm is a wonderous place with happy cats, a dog and hundreds of wild birds feeding in the garden. My birthday cake was a yummy baked apple with ice cream and berries!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

and another great workshop!

This is one of my favs to teach......paper mache is so down to earth and fun. Hope you join me!

Casa de Milagros
Fee $74.00 members $86.00 non-members
Materials fee $15.00 Supply list available upon registration
2 Wednesdays, Wednesdays, Nov 4 & 11 6 – 9pm

Milagros can happen to everyone! Build your House of Miracles from the ground up with light paper mache techniques, paint and collage embellishments. Your structure will house a unique small pamphlet stitch book with collaged pages. We’ll start with house construction and paper mache, building your own unique style of home. Bring in several simple ideas drawn in your journal ahead of time. Don’t forget to add a window or two. While the paper mache dries we’ll create a small pamphlet stitch book that reflects the milagro theme. This can be a memory or a hopeful event for the future! We’ll paint and embellish the house with contrasting acrylic paint layers and collage. The Milagros will be added on to complete the casa. Viva la Vida!

House of Cards Book

New Workshop coming soon to Bravo School of Art!
House of Cards Hidden Piano Hinge Book
Fee $74.00 members $86.00 non-members
Materials fee $10.00 Supply list available upon registration
Sunday, November 1 10am – 4pmSunday, December 13 10am – 4pm

Explore Book Arts with Helen Shafer Garcia in a contemporary mixed media approach with a deck of playing cards as the foundation for your book. A concertina fold hidden collage/painting will be revealed when the book is open on the spine.
We’ll paint, collage and alter the playing cards to build a colorful, embellished book structure. Learn how to layer collage pieces and paint over allowing some of the original imagery to remain. Treat yourself to a day of wet paint, glue, paper and fun!

Friday, October 16, 2009

In Kyoto we visited a very old well known traditional Japanese style paint supplies shop. Generations of Saiundo Fujimoto's family have owned this shop dedicated to hand made powered mineral pigments and plant based watercolors for "Iwa-enogu" style painting. He and his family also make beautiful bamboo brushes. I bought a watercolor set and 1 brush. The shop was packed with ancient drawers filled with incredible colorful, textured artist things.......
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Japan in October

Just returned home from my trip to Japan. Great memories, trips to shrines and temples, took tons of photos for future paintings.... it was a great adventure that I'll never forget. Thankyou Jordan and Mandy!

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Monday, October 5, 2009


Off to Japan tomorrow with my sister and brother in law!! I'll return Thursday October 15th. Lot to share when I return... and you know I'll take tons of photos and hopefully I'll have time to paint.... Sayonara!!
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Saturday, September 12, 2009

Huell Howser at Quail Gardens with my painting

My husband and I posed with Huell Howser tonight at the Quail Gardens Gala in Encinitas, CA. Huell gave a heartwarming speech about the fact that it's the ordinary people of CA that make the most interesting stories. So true.... and thanks to Huell for sharing these stories with us. I painted this watercolor for him as part of the Award of Excellence gift. How cool is that?

Friday, September 4, 2009

Me ha dicho un pajarito

Me ha dicho un pajarito
Originally uploaded by Agave Latte
another painting from my postcard series. "Me ha dicho un pajarito" translates to "a little bird told me" husband's aunt from Mexico City loves to use this dicho or saying. I love it too.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

My student's watercolors at Camp Montecito

Here are some examples of my student's paintings from family camp where I taught every morning. I met some amazing and talented people... a famous astronaut, a former journalist, and a horticulturalist to name a few....

We all shared a peaceful, creative time, painting and relaxing in the high mountain air.

I feel small........

I feel small........
Originally uploaded by Agave Latte
I would love to have a couple of these in my garden......

Montecito portfolios

Montecito portfolios
Originally uploaded by Agave Latte
my students made these wonderful portfolios to hold their watercolor postcards.

painting plein air at Montecito

My students and I painted wild flowers in front of the lodge.

My sister and I at camp

My sister and I at camp
Originally uploaded by Agave Latte
my sister and I at Camp Montecito. is a wonderful family camp where I taught watercolor in the mornings.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

live radio... this Saturday!

I'll be on at 12 noon this Saturday August 1 for gary walker's show Gary's green tree world

with my friend Lori Mitchell. We're going to talk about art and nature. Tune in via the website or while you're driving around town.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

New stuff

Well, it's about time I posted new stuff.

I took a workshop up at Idyllwild with my friend Margaret. The workshop was with Daniel Essig He's an amazing book artist whose work is on the cover of "The Penland book of Handmade Books"
The yellow and red book is my Wooden 4 needle Ethiopian stitch book that took 3 days to make. It's about 5 inches high. We constructed the book out of Mahogany wood, paper, and mica. The mica pages are so cool - we collaged images on the back of pieces of mica in a signature form. As you can see I was still working on the stitching when I took the photo of my book. Being the only left hander in the workshop was not fair..... but I'm used to it! I started my stitching on the top front cover instead of what Dan told us to do..... oh well. He suggested that we start stitching on the tail end of the book in case we screwed it up. My stitches started going a bit "off" before I caught on to the method. But I made it work!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Mission San Luis Rey May 09

A painting from last week's plein air outing at Mission San Luis Rey Mission in Oceanside, CA. My students painted some great views and the weather was lovely.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Book Arts in Fallbrook starting May 14th

I'm very excited that I'm going to start teaching up in Fallbrook, CA starting on May 14th! This class will be on Thursday afternoons for 6 weeks.
Here is the description:

Discover the art of book making using mixed media techniques.
Altered books, side bound encaustic journals, and paper mache container books will be explored in contemporary directions. Have your art passion awakened as you learn mixed media techniques with beeswax, acrylics and other mediums to create various embellished papers to bind into books. Alter an
existing book with paint, found objects and ephemera. We'll also work with paper mache to create a "house"structure for a small pamphlet stitch book.

Supply list will be discussed at the first class meeting.

Fallbrook School of the Arts
310 East Alvarado
Fallbrook, CA 92028 760 728-6383 Look under "workshops" for my class.
Book Arts: Book Arts: Embellished and Stitched with Helen Shafer Garcia Meets Thursdays 1pm to 4pm May 14 & 21, June 4, 11 & 18 Cost: $95.00.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Laura's garden - pastel pencil on Fabriano paper

Today was Sketchcrawler day at a Pt. Loma Garden. Laura's garden was spectacular... we spent the morning drawing and painting and sharing. Lovely......

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Spring quarter at the Athenaeum!

Join me for a fun, relaxed watercolor class at the University Heights location.

HOW TO REGISTER: Registration for classes may be made by telephone , in person or by mailing in the registration form (see link above) to the Athenaeum. Telephone registrations may be charged to American Express, Discover Card, Visa or MasterCard. Mailed registrations may be charged to a credit card or paid by check payable to the Athenaeum and sent to:
ATHENAEUM MUSIC & ARTS LIBRARY 1008 Wall StreetLa Jolla, CA 92037Tuesdays, 9 AM–12 PMMar. 24–May 12San Diego/Park Blvd. Studio$190/215 HOW TO or MasterCard. Mailed registrations may be charged to a credit card or paid by check payable to the Athenaeum and sent to: ATHENAEUM MUSIC & ARTS LIBRARY 1008 Wall StreetLa Jolla, CA 92037

This class will be held at the

School of the Art Studio in University Heights 4441 Park Blvd. San Diego, CA 92116

The class will focus on botanical elements using the “dropped in color” technique, which incorporates luminosity and brilliance in watercolor. It’s a messy, exploratory, out-of-control way of painting that allows the colors to blend and fuse without making “mud.” We’ll work with contemporary experimental painting techniques, including batik methods with Masa paper. Colored pencils and collage elements will be added to embellish shapes. We’ll also use pours, translucent collage, mark making, and surface textures to create magnified, close-up botanical and still-life compositions. Alternative supports will be explored such as paper mounted onto canvas and sealed with an acrylic varnish. Pigment characteristics, color theory, composition, and design will also be covered with demos, critiques, and individual instruction.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Paint at Quail

Yet another chance to take a great workshop at Quail Gardens in Encinitas, CA! Please join me in a delightful day painting in the Herb Garden in the morning and studio time in the afternoon.

You'll learn color mixing on the paper and dropped in color techniques focusing on garden botanical elements.

Sunday, February 8

9:30 am – 4:30 pm

A materials list will be supplied upon registration.
To register call the Gardens or go online.

Call 760/ 436–3036 x206

Quail Botanical Gardens ~ 230 Quail Gardens Drive ~ Encinitas, CA 92024

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

"In today's sharp sparkle, this winter air,
any thing can be made, any sentence begun.
on the brink, on the brim, on the cusp,
praise song for walking forward in that light."

Elizabeth Alexander
Inauguration Day January 20, 2009