Last summer we went on a camping trip to San Simeon. I was surprised at how cold it was, it was July and back at home in Los Angeles, it was HOT! I pretty much lived in my Uggs and all those shorts I packed stayed in the bag. The bright side is that it was a beautiful place. Our camp site was surrounded by mountains and nature. We had two snakes visit us and thought we might be getting some coyote’s visiting since we had 3 small tasty dogs with us but thankfully they stayed away.
Our trip was only 3 days but we managed to squeeze in sight seeing at Hurst Castle, we only made it to the visitor center since we had dogs waiting for us in the car but it was still impressive, we toured 3 wineries, had lunch in Cambria and my husband got so close to a seal that he could have been eaten! I was also determined to doing a little painting. We had rented the cutest vintage camper (www.happiercamper.com) that was just screaming to be painted. Unfortunately, I didn’t have time to paint the camper but I took lots of photos and I will be painting it someday soon. Instead I took my friend Tom for a little plein air painting lesson and we had fun at sunset painting the mountains of San Simeon until it was just too windy and cold to stand it anymore. Did I mention, this is why I’m really not a fan of plein air painting? 😉 I didn’t get any photos of us doing our paintings but I have posted my painting on FineArtAmerica and prints can be purchased there. Check out my mountain paintings.
Mike and the seal.
Cutest camper ever!
Mike the snake rangler!
Trying to spot a wild boar in the mountains
Just one of the beautiful wineries
Our campsite and the incredible view
I recently completed a project to furnish a local office with artwork. The company makes LED Lighting and recently changed management and along with the old CEO went the art that he owned.
One great thing about this office is the colorful walls which create a beautiful backdrop for my art. I was very happy to be selected to provide art for their buildings. All in all they acquired over 40 pieces for their two buildings including some custom pieces including this one titled, “Light Up The Night”. This colorful view of the Downtown Los Angeles skyline at dusk was created for their main lobby. It was printed on metal and is 5 feet wide! The painting looks stunning printed on metal and creates a more modern look while not requiring framing.
Light Up The Night – Acrylic on Paper
You can find more of my city paintings that are available on canvas, metal, acrylic or on archival paper at FineArtAmerica.com
Just to give you a taste of how it turned out here is a collage with photos from the office along with the happy customer!
If you’d like art for your home or office, feel free to contact me! www.athenamantle.com
I admit that I have an obsession with succulents. Thankfully, its not a fatal attraction. Its hard to kill one…even the leaves will start growing roots! My attraction has produced several paintings. If I get a good photo sometimes I paint it more than once.
I like to experiment and use different mediums, change the composition, and see what I can do with it. Sometimes, the combination is so successful that I produce a series using the same concept but with different photos, like my Shadow Dance series. I have this amazing agave that is producing pups like crazy. I took some photos of it and the shadows on all the pups just really stood out and when I painted them, they turned into the focus. These little gems are painted on an upcycled panel from an art crating warehouse that ships art for museums. I love these little panels. They are covered in a brown paper that I primed so I could paint over it. The brown paper is what you see in the background.
Another painting I’ve done 3 different ways is the Prickly series. I just liked the photo so much that I kept painting it. The first one I painted is the pastel on black paper in the middle. I love the texture in that paining. The second one was a commission that I did and its a very large oil paining (3’x5′), the details and soft color changes in the agave’s petals are beautiful, you can really get lost in it. The last one, on the right is my most recent rendition. I have been working on a series of small paintings on paper with acrylic. With all the different mediums and surfaces, the effect produced is entirely different.
I was asked to paint a series of my agave and succulents on paper for a show at the Rebecca Molayem Gallery this past July. I had seen some new paper from Arches at Blick that you could paint with oils on without any additional prep work. So I bought several sheets of it and created these paintings.
The original paintings are available on my website athenamantle.com. You can find these and my other southwest prints on FineArtAmerica.com
It’s hard to believe that it is already that time of year again! ‘Tis the season of gift giving and this year you can give those special people in your life something that they will treasure….art!
Why art? A beautiful painting hanging on the wall will be a constant reminder of how much you care, long after other gifts have been used up or forgotten. This art is beautiful, unique and can not be found at Target!
My paintings are now available as high quality fine art prints through Fine Art America. Sold in a variety of sizes as stretched canvas prints or custom framed with thousands of mat and frame combinations. Click on the link and order yours today!
As a thank you for your support I’m offering a 25% discount on my prints. Use discount code: FKTDRX at checkout. Offer is valid through December 31st.
Original paintings are available at www.athenamantle.com or at Modest Fly Art Gallery 7576 Foothill Blvd. Tujunga, CA www.modestflyartgallery.com. Desert Jewels will be on display through December 20th.
Great Stocking Stuffer!
I am offering a desk calendar with the Desert Jewels painting series for $10. If you are interested in purchasing one of these send me a message through my website. Or you might also like succulent canvas prints available through Fine Art America!
In my last post I discussed using Facebook as a tool to promote my art. I made the decision to accept anyone that sent me a friend request because if I was going to promote myself and my art then I had to meet new people and stop being so exclusive with my Facebook page. Facebook is a bit like high school. It’s all about who likes you and being popular. As an artist you have to put yourself out there and promote yourself. That is definitely something that does not come naturally to me. I prefer to be modest and generally unnoticed. It’s sad to think that I’ve reduced myself to asking to be liked but when in Rome…
I’ve now taken the next step and added a “Fan Page” for Athena Mantle, Fine Artist. I invited all my friends to “Like” me and so far I have 71 people who approve of me. It’s sort of funny to ask someone to “Like” you. I admit I do check it regularly to see if anyone new has given me their approval, silly I know. I get excited when I see people who I don’t know that have given me the “Like” nod of approval.
Facebook is amazing…connecting with old friends and making new ones. So many people who know me were unaware that I was a painter until they saw my work on Facebook. That probably goes back to the modest and unnoticed thing, not exactly good for promotion! FineArtAmerica is also amazing…I sold my first print after 6 weeks of being listed on their site. It was purchased by someone from Cave Creek, Arizona. That was exciting to say the least!
Since this post is all about being liked, if you too feel the urge to send me some love….hit that “Like” button and tell all your friends !
Athena Mantle, Fine Artist
Promote Your Page Too
This blog is about my journey as an artist so aside from my art, I’m going to share with you the things I’ve learned that have helped me or inspired me to keep at it and become a success.
One of the biggest reasons I put aside art for as long as I did was that I had a hard time dealing with the fact that I was producing all these paintings and then they proceeded to sit in my basement, it just seemed pointless. I didn’t need more stuff to store in my basement – I already had plenty of that! I didn’t have the time or energy to really make it as an artist, I had to make a living after all. So I put it in the closet for the next 5 years.
This year things changed…I changed. I realized that it was possible to be successful as an artist. If others could do it, I could too. I took my art out of the closet and I started producing so many paintings that I risked flooding the basement. But this time I was determined, I was not going to let it pile up in the basement. I just had to figure out what successful artists were doing because it was obviously something that I was missing.
The first thing I did was I stopped being a Facebook snob that only accepted people as friends that I actually knew. Sounds silly but soon after I put up a photo album with my art I started getting requests from other artists. From these friendly artists I’ve learned valuable information that has helped me in my journey to find out the secrets I was seeking. Two weeks ago it lead me to the most amazing discovery yet. Through an art blog that was recommended by one of my new friends I found a book written by a gallery owner called “Starving to Successful” . I read the book in an afternoon. I believe that it is THE book for an artist that wants to be successful. I found that I was doing a lot of things right (which was nice to know) but it completely filled in all those questions marks that I had. I’m grateful to the author J. Jason Horejs for writing the book and helping me in my journey to become a professional artist and keeping me from stumbling around in the dark.
In my latest painting titled “Coming Through” I was challenged by the subtlety of the tonal changes. I have enjoyed doing this series as it allowed me to play with the extreme slightness of tonal change and color. I’ve found that using dry brush techniques has achieved interesting effects in my agave series.
Check out more of my desert paintings on FineArtAmerica.com.