Tag Archives: Guitar Aaron

Whirlwind Trip to Austin

Selfie taken on stage with the signature pink elephant at Carousel Lounge

Selfie taken on stage with the signature pink elephant at Carousel Lounge

We returned yesterday from our quick trip to Austin. Sunlight had a show at the Carousel Lounge on Saturday evening. We drove for 4 of the 5 days! Such a looooong drive, but well worth it. We just love Austin! We reconnected with a couple of friends, played some music to a very receptive and attentive crowd, and honestly, we enjoyed the drive!

We don’t have anymore Sunlight shows until December, so it’s back to work on the art side of things. I’m almost done pulling together my new portfolio of 20 of my best paintings. Once that is done, it’s time to get back out there and find places to show/sell my work. I also plan to start my next painting video this week.

We have a ton of work to do here at Chroma Studios! Tomorrow we are announcing some big news on the Chroma blog, it’s so hard not to share this news right now! For those who don’t know, Chroma Studios is a business owned by myself and my husband, here in Albuquerque. We rent studio space to artists and musicians.

This Saturday is my monthly Open Studios event. My studio at 1606 Central Ave SE suite 201, Albuquerque, NM will be open from noon-5pm. Stop by and check out my Studio Clearance sale in person, OR you can go to my Etsy shop to see what I have for sale. Most of the paintings on sale are 50% off OR MORE! This sale is on for a limited time only! Get a great deal on an original painting while you still can!

I guess that’s all I have to share today, I’ll be back with another blog post on Thursday! Have a great week!

Sunlight

photo collage of Sunlight

Photo collage from our first CD cover

Sunlight is the name of the band I play in with my husband, Aaron Lewis. Aaron has started a blog on our Sunlight website, so I figured I would share his first post here. I have some painting to do and I promise to share more progress photos at the beginning of next week. My new planned blogging schedule is 2x per week, every Tuesday and Thursday. Please subscribe to my blog so you won’t miss any new posts!

Here is the link to the Sunlight blog, which is also part of our website.

 

People Who Inspire Me: The REAL Aaron Lewis!

Aaron Lewis with his Taylor Guitar

The Man and his Guitar

Now that I’m blogging 5 days a week, I’ve had to work on planning my posts. It’s not easy to come up with a post everyday of the week! I’ve decided to write a series of posts for different days of the week. Mondays are “Living in the Land of Enchantment”, Tuesdays and Thursdays are “Creativity”, Wednesdays are “People Who Inspire Me” and Fridays are “Friday Funday”.

Today is the first of the “People Who Inspire Me” series, so I decided to start with the person in my life who inspires me most. My husband and soulmate, Aaron Lewis. Aaron inspires me to be the best person I can be. He leads by example. Sometimes it gets on my nerves because I can’t imagine how someone can be so authentically nice to everyone he meets. He rarely has anything bad to say about anyone. He is a determined musician who has followed his heart and makes his own style of music with no excuses.

Me and Aaron at the Phoenix Botanical Gardens

Me and Aaron at the Phoenix Botanical Gardens

Aaron was the one who convinced me that I could be a singer and perform in front of audiences. He encouraged me and pushed me and I’m so grateful for that. He has helped me achieve so many of my dreams and stood by my side through it all. I won’t get into all the ways that he has inspired and stood by me in my personal life too. That’s a whole other blog post of it’s own! 🙂

Aaron began as a heavy metal guitarist at the age of 14. That’s how we met! Aaron and my brother were in their first band together. He switched to the Blues for a couple years in his early twenties and then went to college and earned his BA of Music with a concentration on composing and classical guitar. He has released 3 CDs of solo guitar music, 1 CD of electronic “alien” music. In 2012 we started playing folk music together as “Sunlight” and Aaron’s songwriting talent came full circle from the first song he wrote as a teenager. He also composes for guitar and multiple other instruments/groups of instruments.

I titled this post “The REAL Aaron Lewis” because he has been told he’s not the REAL Aaron Lewis. This guy is more real than anyone I know. He keeps it real for me everyday! He is true to himself and his music. I love him for that. Who cares about that “other” guy.

Sunlight Superman photo by Karl Horodowich

“Sunlight Superman”, this is a great photo to show his sense of humor, he’s always making me laugh! Photo by Karl Horodowich

I asked Aaron several questions for this post so you can learn more about him straight from the horses mouth, so to speak. 😉

Paula: If you had the power to change ONE thing in this world what would it be and how would you change it?

Aaron: I would alter the way we look at our prison system. We have always viewed our prison system as a way to protect society. I would change our prison system to be a positive environment or as I like to say they should be “love factories”. What do I mean by that? All crimes are committed because of a lack of love. People steal because they see no other way to get the finer things or make it in this life because their dreams were crushed at one point in time. People murder because of fight or flight instinct, jealousy, it gives them a rush. I think all of them can be reformed except for those who do it for a rush(serial killers). All people who are in prison because of addictions need to be in rehab centers not prisons. Those who were caught selling to minors need more time and help but really all a drug dealer is is a misguided entrepreneur. I would change the programs at the prison to fast track people back into society because we are a stronger society if we can help one another as opposed to lock ’em up and throw away the key. I would also lose the drab grey paint and fluorescent lights that are used and replace with skylights, colored paint, and positive affirmations on the wall and mandatory guided meditation for 30 minutes a day.

IMG_3346

Aaron Lewis

Paula: What or who inspires you?

Aaron: What inspires me is music itself. It is a fascinating language made up of 12 characters and has been interpreted in so many ways both for the good and the bad of mankind and both approaches are fascinating and inspiring.

Paula: Who has had the biggest influence on your music?

Aaron: The biggest influence on my music would have to be God or Universe or whatever you may want to call it. Sometimes I write music for classical guitar. Sometimes I write songs. Sometimes I write electronic noise soundscapes. When I start to write I have an out of body experience and when I come back one of the above styles is written and I have to admit wholeheartedly that I don’t have any idea how that music came about but here it is.

Paula: What do you want your musical legacy to be?

Aaron: I would like to be someone who is remembered for changing people’s minds about music. That music is not something a few privileged people are able to do but it is a gift for our souls so lets all belly up to the table together with our voices, our instruments and feed each other’s souls with the universal language that has been such a gift for centuries and will continue to be such a gift.

Thank you Aaron for submitting to my questions, I must admit it was cool to read your answers! 🙂 Check back next Wednesday for my next post of “People Who Inspire Me”.

Sunlight on KUPR

Cd cover for Life is Good by Sunlight

“Life is Good” cd cover by Sunlight

A couple of weeks ago Aaron and I recorded an interview for a new local radio station out of Placitas, New Mexico. It aired last Thursday and I now have the link to share it with you all here! It’s about a 30 minute show with an interview and 5 of our songs played in between. Please give it a listen and let us know what you think. Thank you!

http://nmsunlight.com/track/990787/kupr-radio-interview?autostart=true

FYI, I’m a singer in a alternative folk group with my husband, Aaron Lewis. We play original songs, written mainly by Aaron. If you would like to hear more of our music and know more about Sunlight, check out our website at www.nmsunlight.com

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!

Sunshine on the Ridge

Here it is! Aaron and I recorded a video of one of our original songs last night. We are currently working on five original songs and having SUCH a good time! I hope you enjoy the song as much as we do!

Docuarting

Docuarting | Paula Manning-Lewis – Painter from Justin Simenson on Vimeo.

Justin Thor Simenson, a New Mexican photographer and local artist friend of mine, is doing a series of Documentary style photographic slide shows with audio interviews. He is calling this series “Docuarting”. My husband, guitarist/composer Aaron Lewis, was his first subject and I was the second. This was a fun project! Justin came over to my studio for a few hours and we talked while I painted and he took photographs of me painting. Justin also recorded our conversation and used clips of it over the slide show he created. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!