Wednesday, October 24, 2012

2012 Fall Open Studio Tour: Artist Melinda Esparza

Yes. Getting ready for the 2012 fall open studio tour here in Tucson, AZ.

Painting First Wall Oct. 2012

Can you tell that this is the scale on which I'd prefer to paint? We're starting to paint the house and this image was the first thing that caught my eye as I began. Wish I had canvas and space for it.

A week ago, I started the following painting and turned it around for a day to let it 'breathe.' When I turned it back to work on it (and each time I did after that), my dog, Diego (yeah, after THAT Diego), studied it carefully and then hurriedly left the room. Whaa?! Each time I turned it so he could see it, he would get up and walk away. Now howz that for silent criticism? Diego, the art critic. He also doesn't approve if I turn up my music...but I do it anyway.

So, today I went back into the painting and he didn't seem upset at all. Maybe it's done.

Light Descendant--Maricopa Point (30" x 30" Oil on canvas © Melinda Esparza)
If you'd like to purchase this painting, please click here.

Circular thinking ahead:

Our library offers ebooks now. I've gone nuts for checking out books to read on my tablet and reserving them online. One that I've started reading recently is The Seven Daughters of Eve, by Bryan Sykes (Genes are not watered down, but expressed for millenia.)

This, of course, got me to thinking about genealogy. Taking a break from painting, I watched a PBS special on the Modoc War. A brave Modoc woman, an interpreter/mediator, saved the life of Alfred Meacham (Superintendent of Indian Affairs for Oregon, 1869) and tried to keep peace during negotiations with the Government in the 1870s to no avail. She was later sent to Oklahoma, and while there, Meacham gave her the name, Winemah, The Woman Chief.

This reminded me of my grandmother (born in Sasakwa, OK in 1904) who also shared the name, but spelled, Wynema. I've always wondered the meaning of my grandmother's name. In my research, she was named after a young cousin who had died as an infant in the late 1800s. I believe it is a Creek name. My family on her side descended from the Eastern Cherokee and possibly the Catawba, so the name may have been one that became popular as a result of all of the settling in Oklahoma.

Remembering my brave Wynema (c. 1912)
In the land, our ancestors dwell with us always, and we hold them in our hands as we honor their walk. I like the circle.

P. S. I probably should not ever consider becoming a house painter. Just saying. But, it would be nice to see you at the 2012 Fall Open Studio Tour here in Tucson, AZ.


Barbara Muir said...

I really get the urge to paint large, see my blog for an image of what I'm planning. Love the painting that Diego didn't understand until it was finished. That is funny. Gorgeous blue. Your brave Wynema's features and bravery have come through in your own beautiful face.

House painting no. Painter yes indeed. Sure wish I could fly down for that opening.

XO Barbaa

Jeane Myers said...

a wordless critic is a very powerful thing, no! well so happy he gave the nod on this painting - it is striking! wonderful - painting the house? oh, my, I do not envy you guys - such a job but oh so rewarding - so enjoyed the bit about your Wynema - what a rich heritage xox

Bridget Hunter said...

How wonderful are those blues.

Melinda said...

Indeed, Jeane! Really. I can mostly handle the one in my head, not the silent one, though! Yes, now he snoozes comfortably as it's drying. Oh, the house will take months since we're buying a gallon at a time and painting by hand until after the open studio thingy. But, I kind of like that. Glad you like this painting even more! Warm hugs

Melinda said...

Thank you, Bridget. They are fairly luscious in the real. I have an underlayment of Cadmium Red and a very dark Dioxazine violet mixed with Pthalo blue. After that dried, and my dog snubbed it, I troweled a mixture of Cobalt Blue and some odd paint on my palette.

Oh, well, so much for the magic!

Thank you for visiting.

Barbara Muir said...

Hi Melinda,

You know you're rushing when you don't spell your own name correctly.

That should have been Barbara.

XO Barbara

Melinda said...


I've done that. Not to worry.


cohen labelle said...

You have a wonderful intensity of feeling and colour in everything you ‘attack’, Melinda, whether it’s painting a wall in preparation for a studio tour or in connecting with the history of your grandmother – all that and more as well as being a sublime painter! Ok I’m an ardent fan although not always an ardent blogger – you and the beautiful work you do are often in my thoughts!

xo, Marcia

Melinda said...

Oh, dear Marcia, it is so generous of you to write such good things about my work. I truly appreciate it. Sometimes my intensity borders on obsession. I just love to learn--and work.

I've missed you online. I know you must be busy with real life, but I hope you are also making time for your wonderful artwork.

Warm hugs from the desert.

Jeffrey J. Boron said...

There is always so much to know of the long ago times, sadly so much has been lost.

A very powerful painting Melinda and one that certainly, given closer proximity, could only be more so.


Melinda said...

Thank you, Jeffrey. I love history and history as it relates to our families. If only we could chat with those who lived it.

Yes, I wish you could be here at the open studio tour to see it.

Warm hugs from the desert!