Category Archives: open studio

Lots to share!

 

I have and continue to have a busy week! So much to share with you all, I’m not sure what to share first. I FINALLY figured out my camera set up for making painting videos! I must admit I’ve been in avoidance mode for years with this one, having no idea how to do this. Funny thing is, I stumbled upon a solution! We recently purchased an iPad holder that attaches to my mic stand so I can have my song list and song lyrics easily accessible when Sunlight is out playing a show. The first time I attached it I thought, hey, I could totally use this for making my painting videos! If you know me at all, you know I LOVE efficiency! I now have an iPad holder that serves not one, but TWO purposes. lol. I know, I’m a dork, but I was just so excited to stumble on this solution!

Painting Video

A couple of days ago I started a new canvas and I’m currently testing my set up. It’s working perfectly! If you don’t already follow me on Instagram, you can see some teaser videos there. I will share just one of them here on the blog, for now! Once the painting is finished I will share the entire painting video here on the blog and on my youtube channel. Stay tuned for LOTS more!

Another thing keeping me busy this week is a Sunlight gig on Friday evening at the Moonlight Market here in Albuquerque. The week of a gig always means lots of practice time too! We play from 6-8pm and would love to see a friendly face or 10 in the audience! You can also browse the artist market or get some food from the food truck while you listen. 🙂

The final, last but not least, thing to share this week is my Open Studio Event at Chroma Studios on Saturday! Three other artists and I will have our studios open to the public. I’m currently working on pieces for my updated portfolio. This means I have many paintings that aren’t going to make the cut. Not because they are awful, but because they don’t fit my criteria for my portfolio. What this means is they are either older pieces, too small for a gallery, part of a series I’m no longer promoting, etc. They are all perfectly good paintings, but I am currently in need of a bit of cash flow! Mama needs some more art supplies! I will have selected pieces on sale for up to 60% off! Now is a perfect time to add a Paula Manning-Lewis original to your art collection, or start your art collection!

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Chroma Studios Open House: Saturday, Sept. 17, 12-5pm

Reception area at Chroma Studios

Reception area at Chroma Studios

This Saturday from noon to 5pm I will be opening my studio to the public. Not just my studio, but 3-4 other artists in my building will also be here to show their work! It’s been years since we opened Chroma Studios to the public and I am so excited to share all the color and energy with you all! We have 11 studios in all, though not everyone is able to be open this time around.

We have 2 studios that are currently being moved out of, so we also have 2 studios opening up for new artists at the beginning of October. If you are looking for an art studio, stop by and see what we have available! We are always happy to welcome new artists into the Chroma Studios fold. 🙂

Mixed Media by Dee Alexandria

Mixed Media by Dee Alexandria

I recently moved into a new studio that I’m sharing with another artist. Dee Alexandria has been a friend since we first met selling our art at the New Mexico State Fair almost 10 years ago! We decided to share a studio because neither of us needed a big studio to ourselves. Plus, it’s nice to have company in the studio. So often, artists are isolated from their peers. That is one of the things about Chroma Studios that makes it so nice! We have a community of artists here that help each other out. Mine and Dee’s work compliments each other perfectly as we both love color, flowers and spirals!

Landscape painting by Cynthia Zeedyk

Landscape painting by Cynthia Zeedyk

Cynthia Zeedyck is another artist who will have her studio open this Saturday. She is a lifelong artist with 45 years of training and experience in the arts, including: Fine Arts, Appalachian Arts, Poetry, many styles of Dance, Wildcrafting Herbs, and Poetry. Cynthia was awarded with an Apprenticeship Grant from Ohio Arts for Traditional Heritage Basket Making. Her works sold both nationally and internationally. She was the largest female producer of Heritage Berry Baskets in the world.  Her designs and creations include landscape paintings, floral and contemporary. Newest works in Scrimshaw. Cynthia has been a Chroma Artist since 2014.

Mixed Media by Robert Medina Cook

Mixed Media by Robert Medina Cook

Robert Medina Cook has been a Chroma Studios artist off and on for at least 5 years. He began his journey in the creative arts over forty years ago in Santa Fe, New Mexico. A native New Mexican whose local family roots go back centuries in Northern New Mexico, in 2012 Robert was one of 7 artists honored for their excellence in the arts by being proclaimed a “Local Treasure” by the Albuquerque Art Business Association. Featured in several publications, his artworks have won numerous awards and can be found in corporate, museum, public art and private collections throughout the US and abroad.

Mixed Media by Phillip Vigil

Mixed Media by Phillip Vigil

Phillip Vigil (Jemez Pueblo/Chiricahua Apache) is a fourth-generation artist residing in Jemez Pueblo. He is new to Chroma Studios. He is a self-taught artist and has been working seriously on his art now for several years. He always had a love of art since he realized at a young age that the paintings on the walls were done by members of his family. He is highly influenced by the abstract modernists of the early and late 20th century. He works a lot on paper with oil pastels, oil sticks, oil paint sticks, spray paint, oil and acrylic paint as well.

 

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Work in Progress…

It’s been really nice having time in the studio the past couple of weeks. Makes me feel a bit guilty since my hubby is stuck at home digging up the sewer pipes in the back yard! We had our house all ready to sell, it’s actually on the market now, and now we have a MAJOR plumbing disaster happening in our back yard! Turns out the sewer lines that we thought were “slow”(just old and clogged) are actually filled with holes and collapsed in some places. My husband and son have been digging for days and today was the day they hoped to uncover the connection to the main sewer line.

Trench in my back yard

Trench in my back yard! It now keeps going around the corner of the house at the end.

Unfortunately, that was not to be. It turns out, our sewer line from our kitchen and back bathroom/laundry room actually lead into a 5o gallon barrel, old rusty barrel. You see, our house was built way back when in 1950, and I guess the original house was on a septic tank (if that’s what they called a septic tank back then!) UPDATE: My hubby just called to let me know that the barrel was NOT a septic tank after all, it was actually buried ABOVE the pipes! UGH! Good news is the pipe keeps going, so no septic to remove, but there is still that barrel…

Work in progress, 12 x 12" oil on canvas

Work in progress, 12 x 12″ oil on canvas

While my poor sweetie has been digging in the back yard, I’ve been busy creating new paintings and getting ready for my Open Studio event coming up at Chroma Studios! I am having an art sale on that day to help contribute to our plumbing fund! If you aren’t local, stay tuned as I will post paintings here for sale as well! 🙂

Work in progress, 12 x 12" oil on canvas, this one has a black gesso background!

Work in progress, 12 x 12″ oil on canvas, this one has a black gesso background!

 

 

Living in the Land of Enchantment: 10 Things to do in Albuquerque

There are so many places to see and things to do around here, it’s really hard to pick just one to write about! This week, I decided to write about 10 (make that 11)  things to do in the area. Technically, it’s more than ten, as I fit more than one into each number. Next time someone tells you there is nothing to do in Albuquerque, direct them to this post! 🙂

  1. Ride the Rail Runner from Albuquerque to Santa Fe.

    The ride alone is worth the trip as it takes you through the lovely New Mexico landscape. The tickets will only cost you $16 round trip! There are many stops along the route to start and if you take the train to the end of the line, you end up in the Santa Fe Railyard which is only a few short blocks away from the Plaza. The Railyard also has galleries and the famous Tomasita’s restaurant.

  2. Ride the Sandia Peak Tramway.

    This May will be the Tram’s 50th anniversary, and though I have lived in NM most of my life, I STILL have not ridden the Tram up the mountain. It’s just one of those tourist things locals rarely do. One day very soon, I plan on it! I have heard from MANY sources that it’s something one MUST do. I guess I prefer hiking up the mountain to riding up! UPDATE, Oct. 2016: I finally rode the Tram! It was awesome!

  3. Hiking the Sandia Mountains.

    Speaking of hiking, the Sandia mountains just East of Albuquerque have many, many miles of hiking trails! It can take a full day to hike to the peak, where the tram takes only 15 minutes. I have hiked to the South Crest several times and LOVE it! Please, make sure you go prepared. Water, jacket, hat. Many people have had to be rescued from these mountains because they don’t realize how quickly weather can change in NM. The weather can be warm and sunny in town and cold and rainy at the top of the peak.

  4. Petroglyphs National Monument.

    This is one of the largest petroglyph sites in Northern America. Volcanic rocks were carved by Native Americans and Spanish settlers up to 700 years ago, leaving behind interesting designs and symbols for us to ponder over. Another cool place to visit, related to the petroglyphs, are the volcanoes on the west mesa overlooking Albuquerque.

  5. Bio Park, Botanical Gardens/Aquarium/Zoo.

    Albuquerque has an awesome botanical garden with an indoor aquarium. The gardens are attached to the city zoo by a cool little open air train line that you ride between the two with out having to get in your car and drive. Also, while riding the train between the zoo and gardens, you will pass by Tingley Beach which is a series of three ponds, man made for fishing and remote control boats. In the summer months they have paddle boats you can rent for $10 an hour to paddle around the big pond in. The kids will also enjoy feeding the ducks and geese that call the ponds and river area home. The gardens are my favorite part, they have several different gardens, including a rose garden, Japanese garden and a farm with barn animals and New Mexico homestead. Great place to take the kiddos!

  6. Bike Ride on the Bosque Trail.

    While you are down near the Bio Park, right next door in fact, is the Central Ave. entrance to the Bosque bike and walking trail. The Bosque is the area of trees and open space that surrounds the Rio Grande River.

  7. See a Play.

    Albuquerque has MANY theatres, over 35 to be more specific! We can boast that we have the most live performance theatres per capita than any other city in the country. Just about ANY weekend in Albuquerque, you can find a show you might be interested in. The Albuquerque Theatre Guild website is a great place to start your search for that perfect play!

  8. Museums.

    Albuquerque has a great variety of museums for everyone in the family! There is the Albuquerque Museum of Art & History, the Anderson-Abruzzo International Balloon Museum, the New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science, the National Museum of Nuclear Science & History, Explora, National Hispanic Cultural Center, Indian Pueblo Cultural Center, the Maxwell Museum of Anthopology, the Unser Racing Museum and several more can be found HERE. I’ve linked to all their websites so you can learn more about each one you may have an interest in.

  9. Antique/Thrift Store shopping.

    Albuquerque has large variety of Antique shops and Thrift stores. Most are concentrated on Central Ave between Carlisle and San Mateo or on Menaul Ave. between Carlisle and San Mateo, but there are others all over town. You can find some really great deals on a variety of stuff. I could write a post about all the awesome thrift stores in this city. I have spent many hours sifting through the many shops.

  10. Ghost Tours of Old Town.

    This is another attraction I’ve never experienced, but I personally know one of the tour guides and KNOW it’s worth it! Yet another thing I plan to do someday. The Old Town of Albuquerque is VERY old! Over 300 years! There are rumored to be many ghosts living in the back alleys and old adobe buildings.

  11. Visit MY Studio!

    I hope you will get in touch and come visit me in my studio when you are in the area. I don’t hold retail hours, but I am always happy to open up the studio for out of town guests! You don’t have to buy anything, but I’m always pleased to send an Albuquerque memento home with a fan. 🙂

Open Studio

Paula Manning's studio space

My studio, all clean, pretty and ready for visitors this past Saturday

This past Saturday I opened my studio to the public. Unfortunately, this is the only photo I took! I used to be so good about getting photos during events like this. Not sure when I stopped. I was having so much fun socializing and greeting visitors that I totally forgot to grab my camera!

I guess this means I will have to a paint a picture with words for you. My husband, Aaron Lewis, aka Guitar Aaron, played his classical guitar for us in the front lobby of Chroma Studios. Three other artists opened their studios too. Victoria Bryers in studio #3, Tricia Thorp in studio #5 and Jasmine Carpenter in studio #6. My studio is #7. We had a table set up with refreshments in the back hallway/kitchen area.

The evening began with an ITEX member meeting. ITEX is a barter network that I am a member of. If you have ever thought about barter as a way of being, you absolutely, must check out ITEX. We had a toast with some yummy sparkling wine and I mingled with new people I hadn’t met before.

I was happy to see several artist friends that I haven’t seen in literally YEARS. After all, it has been just over two years since I last opened my studio to the public.

Towards the end of the evening a group of young artists came into the studio. They were dressed to impress and impress they did. One of them began by asking questions about how he should go about approaching local galleries about showing his art work. I offered my advice, basically, scout out all the galleries you can find and when you find one that you think your art would fit into, ask about their submission policy.

I asked them all some questions and found out they had JUST moved to Albuquerque from Virginia. Like four days ago. I so enjoyed talking with these young people. I was reminded of myself at that age. They were almost surprised that I was offering so much information to them. Of course, I said, I remember being where they are now. I remember not having anyone to ask these questions. I have always promised myself that I would help out young artists as much as was possible with my knowledge, gained over the past 23 years of being an artist.

I have been considering teaching a workshop on this topic and I think this encounter has pushed me over the edge of decision. I have decided that it’s important for me to share what I have learned. If I can help just one artist avoid the mistakes, trial and error I endured, it would be worth it. I guess I had better get myself in gear and write some workshop plans!

I hope that you all are having a great start to the New Year! 2014 is going to be a GREAT year, I can just FEEL it!

Where I’m coming from….and where I’m going

Today’s blog post is jumbled up in my head with a multitude of different ideas and themes. It started out as an update on our experiment to live without a car. During meditation this morning, the “Love, Pass it on” project came back to the front of mind. A reminder that I had let the ball drop on that important project. Then there is a looming deadline, my art show in November that I need to get ready for. On Monday, Aaron and I were asked to appear on a local public access show to talk about the Occupy Wall Street movement here in Albuquerque. That show is tonight and I still need to do some preparation for that as well. When it rains it pours, right?

Today, I multitask as my mind swims with ideas. In between painting, building frames, writing and now blogging, my mind is awash in thoughts, goals, plans and what to do next. There never seems to be enough time to do it all. If only I could get by on 3 hours of sleep per night! Please bear with me as this blog post takes on the maze that is my mind and tries (possibly in vain) to tie it all together in one blog post.

We have now gone four months without a car. That statement is a bit misleading, we have borrowed our parent’s cars a few times over the past four months. Usually for a day or two when we have errands to run that require a car. Picking up a bale of straw and a 50 lb. bag of feed for the chickens for example. Or more accurately, whenever we go over to the parental home and they insist on us taking their extra car because they aren’t using it. I am starting to think they don’t believe that we CHOSE to give up our van. REALLY, it WAS a choice! It’s almost as if they feel bad for us and can’t understand “how can you possibly live without a car”. I PREFER living without a car! Seriously! The only issue we have run into is visiting Aaron’s parents, who live in one of the only areas of Albuquerque that is totally void of a bus route. The closest bus stop is 2 miles away from their house. Though it is quite a lovely walk when the weather is nice.

My life is almost stress free without a car! Riding the bus has given me more time for reading or just plain relaxing and reflecting. We have met some interesting people, but perhaps the best thing for me? I no longer feel any guilt about giving my money to the oil companies, polluting the earth or not getting enough exercise. Which reminds me, I have now lost 22 pounds! I credit this weight loss partially to having to walk to and from the bus stop or just walking to that next bus stop when the bus is going to be a while. I also credit it to switching to a mostly organic diet. No more processed foods, eating meat only once or twice a week, LOTS of local and organic fruits and veggies (thanks to Los Poblanos Organics, our local CSA). In short, I LOVE USING PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION!

Living without a car leads me into my next topic. Occupy Wall Street. Yes, I have been out there. No, I haven’t camped out. OWS excites the HELL out of me! I am so happy to see this movement FINALLY happening! It has been a long time coming. I have been waiting for this since the election of 2000. I had a conversation with an older woman at the first local rally about the fact that she has been waiting since the Reagan years for something like this. This is a topic for it’s very own blog post. IT’S ABOUT FREAKING TIME WE (THE 99%) ARE TAKING OUR COUNTRY BACK!! I will spend more time writing a more thoughtful and intelligent post about this topic very soon.

Now, for my “Love, Pass it on” project. I blogged about this project when I first started it. The idea is to take the “Free hugs” idea a step further. I created a few paintings for this series and plan to have stickers made with the images that will say “Love, Pass it on”. The vision that came to me in meditation this morning was of me, wearing a sandwich board that says “Love, Pass it on! FREE HUGS”. I will walk down Central Ave. (Albuquerque’s main street) handing out free stickers and giving free hugs. All the while telling people that I LOVE them, unconditionally! This is what the world NEEDS! People going out in public and telling strangers that you love them! I’m sure there will be people who think I am just a nut case, but they can have a free hug too! I am GOING to do my part in my small way and my hope is that it will catch on and others will do the same thing. I am hoping to find someone that would be willing to video my first time out so I can share it on you tube and facebook. So many people out there have NO love, no one to go home to, no one telling them “I love you”. Imagine what the world would be like if EVERYONE felt loved!

Last but not least, I am getting prepared for my first art show in over a year! My son, Bryan, is now getting started as an artist and asked me about doing a show at the studios. We decided that it would be really awesome to have a “mom/son” art show, so that is what we are doing! In addition to our art show, it will also be an open studio night for the artists at Chroma Studios. I will post more info as the dates get closer. November 11th and 12th, 5-8pm, at the Central Ave. location of Chroma Studios. Hope to see my local peeps there! 🙂

Factory on 5th and other thoughts

Tonight is the First Friday show at the Factory on 5th. I am almost ready in the studio, busy printing business cards and rehanging art on the walls.

My latest news regarding the Factory is starting in January I will no longer have my studio here. My two older sons have moved out of the house and it makes no sense to keep paying rent for an outside studio when we have two empty rooms at home.

In some ways I’m happy about the move, I will be able to work anytime of the day, I won’t have to commute anymore which will save us money on gas, and we will save the money paid on rent.

In other ways I’m not happy about the move, I will miss the artist friends I’ve made at the Factory, I will no longer have a “place of business”.

At the same time, there will no longer be the distraction of the dramas that occur when more than 5 artists are working in the same building. One of the problems I’ve always had with the Factory is that the ceilings are open so there is no real sense of privacy. Everyone knows each other’s business. Music has to be low so it doesn’t bother the other artists.

Some people don’t have my sense of courtesy, so there is always someone else’s music blasting over mine. I like to blast my music while I paint too, but I feel bad about annoying other people. I won’t have to worry about that anymore.