Tide Pools

Here are two paintings I’ve done for my sister’s upcoming birthday.  She and her family live in Seattle and she wanted a couple of prints for her bathroom.  She was looking through all my fish prints and trying to decide what to use.  The thought came to me to do a new painting for her with sea life from the Pacific Northwest.  Her shower curtain had oranges and blues and tans so I worked with those colors.

Years ago we lived in Oakland California where I worked as an outdoor program specialist for the San Francisco Bay Girl Scouts.  I drove a van throughout the bay area leading special programs for girl scout troops.  Every so often I would meet a troop out on the coast where we would explore the tide pools.  The Northwest coast can be pretty gray, chilly and overcast; but the tide pools are just bursting with color of the various sea creatures.  The stark contrast made it exciting, like finding a treasure.   I loved teaching about how the sea creatures had adapted to their stark environment, opening and closing with the tide changes.

It was a fun and challenging painting the tide pools, and it helped that I did them both at the same time.   The paintings brought back happy memories that I had not thought about in years.  I feel they turned out pretty well and hope my sister will like them and that they will work in her space.

 

Mer-Cat

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Mer-cat – acrylic painting by Heni Sandoval

Here’s a new painting for my Heni’s Happy Painting Etsy shop.    Earlier in the summer I painted The Brothers of our cats Tuxie and Truffle.  I then thought I’d like to paint our other cat, Tiggy who passed away a few years ago. With the warm summer weather I was also thinking about painting a mermaid in an underwater scene.  I put these two ideas together and created Mer-Cat.

Back in May when I had my show at the Phoenix and Dragon bookstore, Candice, the owner mentioned that they have  an art show in October where they have paintings of cats from various local artists which is another reason why I’ve done these cat paintings.  The bookstore has three cats that live there full time.  When I set up my show, they all came into the gallery to hang out with me.  It was very sweet. There are many pet oriented gifts in the shop and I’ve bought some cat gifts for my daughter there.

My daughter has been in Prague now for just over a week, it’s pretty quiet around here, I think our kitties are missing her and all her loving attention.  Enjoy the rest of the weekend!

The Star

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The Star – acrylic painting by Heni Sandoval

Years ago I painted the interior one of my large papier mache bowls with a scene of a woman pouring water out of her vessel, the water turned into waves that curve around the  the bowl. I loved the way the image worked so well with the bowl shape.   I still have the bowl which sits in our living room.   I felt like trying to do a painting with a similar idea.  The Star is the result.

A young woman is pouring water into a pond in the evening with the stars shining above. To me the painting symbolizes that each human being is unique like stars in the sky and that through our own uniqueness that we pour out into the world we help to create a better world. It’s good to see people coming together and focusing on how they can contribute in their own way during this turbulent time period.

 

Pink Lotus Flower

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Pink Lotus Flower -acrylic painting by Heni Sandoval

I felt drawn to paint a lotus this week because of it’s meaning.  The lotus flower symbolizes rising from a dark space into a place of beauty and rebirth.  Lotus flowers grow out of muddy and murky water and produce beautiful blossoms. They are a symbol of strength among adversity.   It’s been a couple of tough weeks for me emotionally but I’m starting to feel better.  The lotus reminds me that sometimes when we go through a dark period something beautiful can come about in time.

Pink Lotus Flower is my fourth  lotus painting and with this one I wanted to emphasis the flower coming up from the dark with  the the light shining  from above.      I am pleased with it, I like the contrast of the lights and darks.  I tried to capture the way the lotus seems to glow in the sunlight.  My hope is that all will feel more uplifted as we enter the December holiday season.

 

 

Mom and Baby Beluga Whale

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Mom and Baby Beluga Whales – acrylic painting by Heni Sandoval

Mom and Baby Beluga Whale is a new painting for my Heni’s Happy Paintings Etsy Shop.   I wanted to do a new sea life painting with a mom and baby.   It’s been fun to paint the two whales and figure out how to bring in the light through the water.

I was the girl scout leader for my girl’s troop through her fifth grade, our big end of the year event was a sleep over at the Atlanta Aquarium  which had recently opened. The girls were thrilled.  We got the “behind the scenes” tour and to do lots of fun activities through the night.  My favorite spot was by the window with a view into the large Beluga Whale tank.  There were two whales that would swim by and look at us.  They are graceful and seemed very gentle and curious about our kids.    Later in the night we set up our sleeping bags in the river otter section which was something, they came alive at night calling each other and diving in and out of the water.  It was great fun to watch, though we didn’t get any sleep.

In this painting the Beluga Whales are free and not in captivity.  Recently the  Georgia Aquarium has decided to no longer will take whales or dolphins caught in the wild, they need to be with larger family groups and able to swim free.  Times are changing as we become more aware.

Floating Mermaid

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Floating Mermaid- acrylic painting by Heni Sandoval

Here is my new painting, Floating Mermaid.  It’s feels good to be back to painting as I have had a long break.   In early May, I took a road trip with my twin sister up to New York City.  We met up with my two other sisters in New Jersey at my aunt’s home and had such a great reunion, also enjoying visiting with cousins and my aunt.   It had been over ten years since we had all been together.   We then took the train into Manhattan and  got to spend time with my daughter who was finishing up her freshman year at NYU.  She loves being in the city and it was reassuring to see how she was thriving.

Once she came home for summer break,  an opportunity opened up for her to spend five weeks in China teaching English and visiting with Chinese friends she had made at school.  It was all very sudden and with me helping her get ready for her adventure and having her home I found it challenging to focus on my art.

She’s been in China a week now and is enjoying herself and I am back to painting.  This floating mermaid is the result.  In life there are times we have to let go, relax and trust.  As a mom, I was nervous about my 18 year old girl  traveling on her own half way around the world.   At this point, part of my journey as a mom is to let go and trust my   child’s own path in life.    In this painting I wanted to show a mermaid relaxing in the water as the sun shines on her with the white dove of peace soaring above her, knowing all is well.

I hope all are enjoying summer,  whether you are home relaxing or off on exciting adventures!

 

Mermaid Basking in the Sun

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Mermaid Basking in the Sun – acrylic painting by Heni Sandoval

Mermaid Basking in the Sun is a new painting for my Heni’s Happy Paintings Etsy Shop.  This a my second attempt at painting a mermaid, the first was set in a moonlit scene.  This time I felt like painting a mermaid enjoying the warmth of the sun

When I was younger I loved the idea and stories of mermaids, perhaps because my twin sister and I swam all summer long and  felt at home under water. Once I started snorkeling and saw the beauty of the tropical fish and coral, I could easily imagine mermaids swimming about.

With the earth  having three quarters of it’s surface covered in water, it makes sense that cultures around the world have myths of mermaids. In general, mermaids are  portrayed as beautiful, mysterious and powerful creatures.  I’m pleased with my painting, she turned out nicely.

Spring is in full force here in Atlanta, it’s beautiful.  Wishing everyone a happy Easter weekend!