Alex Diffin is a Long Beach artist. She focuses on pop contemporary abstract portraiture; running with the themes of bright chaotic color accented with a detailed emotive portrait.
Alex draws her inspiration from the wild abstractness of life, and how stunning it can be despite its unpredictability.
Life is messy, life is beautiful.
B. 1966, LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA. LIVES AND WORKS IN SANTA MONICA
After receiving a degree from F.I.D.M in 1988, Anahid successfully worked in the fashion and interior design industry until 1994. She then decided to turn her attention to her first passion of painting. In 1999, she began showing in various group exhibits and was given her first Solo Exhibit in 2004. Anahid has received an award and honorable mention by the Los Angeles Municipal Gallery. She has regularly exhibited in galleries nationally and internationally for over 15 years, and continues to do so. Currently, she is a member of the “TEN WOMEN GALLERY” in Santa Monica, California and is in the beginning stages of her first installation project.
Blake Carmichael is a figurative oil-painter based in Los Angeles, California. Originally from Detroit, she is a third generation artist with creativity deeply ingrained in her upbringing. Her work focuses on the female figure in various states of focus. It is through her subjects that she explores concepts of mystery, paradox, and intrigue. Realistic in nature, her figures take on abstractions with muted, blurred backgrounds. Her work features white eyes in many of her subjects - resulting in something almost mystical, and open to many interpretations. In 2013, Blake obtained her B.F.A for creative studies- painting and drawing.
Photographer Carl Shubs began working with film during his college years. After a Safari trip in Africa in 2001, he then switched to digital. This allowed him to be more adventurous in following his inspirations, without having to worry about the cost of film and processing.
In 2011, he exhibited in his first group show at the Museum of Neon and Kinetic Art in Los Angeles. The experience encouraged him to deepen his commitment to photography as well as showcasing his work. In 2014, he was accepted and joined the Los Angeles Art Association (LAAA). He is also a member of the Los Angeles Center for Photography (LACP).
He has since been in many juried exhibitions, with 20 shows this year alone. He has also curated a combination solo exhibit and group show. His work has been published in Lenscratch and F-Stop Magazine.
Christo’s work is derived from direct observation. He takes care to observe and include detail, such as subtle changes in light and dark as well as color. Christo is inspired by early Renaissance and Byzantine paintings.
Davia King is an abstract expressionist artist who enjoys using bright colors. By stacking thin layers of ink and aerosol, along with the use water, air and gravity, she is able to manipulate paint. The end result- visual interpretation of creative energy. By allowing the composition to take on a life of its own rather than using force, each piece is unique and cannot be replicated.
When drawing faces, King focuses solely on the subject, never breaking gaze. Her eyes follow the lines and shapes, which transfers to her brush. This creates an authentic portrait without revision, edits or filters. The final piece captures the essence of the subject in the moment of connection. By merging the portraits together, overlapping at times atop a colorful background, the final composition is created. Regardless of color, shape, or size, we are all a part of the same whole. Unique and individual, we create the microcosm that makes up the macrocosm, showing us as the human family.
Above all, Floyd love’s art. He immerses himself in its energy, meaning and importance. Floyd is influenced by modern culture, historical and contemporary painters, and pop culture; particularly graphic novels. Floyd’s current work, blends segments of historical high cultural paintings, with contemporary pop cultural figures. Interested in creating imagery that allows viewers unconsciously consume historical artwork, Floyd's works attempts to provide the bridge between artistic periods.
Geoffrey Nelson grew up overseas, primarily in North Africa, as a member of a diplomat family. He attended high school in Spain and Morocco and then went on to complete his university studies at the University of California at Berkeley. His peripatetic childhood paved the road to become a travel photographer. Over the years, his work morphed focusing on fine art and commercial photography. His subject has always been the nude since his early days in Berkeley. Within the last few years, his work has taken a three-dimensional turn spurred on by many years of attending the Burning Man festival.
His use of heat molded plastic strips to create these figures is unique and opens up unlimited possibilities.
Jamia Weir grew up watching Pee Wee’s Playhouse and choreographing rollerskate routines in her driveway. As an artist-teacher from Connecticut, currently based in Los Angeles, she often playfully explores the chaos of waste and recyclable materials in her art and with her K-4 students. Jamia received a Masters of Art Education from the Maryland Institute College of Art in 2014. Her thesis work about Arts Integration and Eco-Art Education was published in the national journal, Art Education. In 2016, she obtained a Fund For Teachers fellowship to attend The International Center For the Arts in Montecastello di Vibio in Umbria, Italy. With an affinity for performance, fashion, comedy, the 50s, 60s, and Pop art, her work often represents female identity, as well as the yearning for connection with nature for city-dwellers drowning in the consumer culture.
Julia Alexander’s work aims to bridge the gap between the personal and formal elements specific to ideas of: flatness, color saturation, and repetitive patterning. She is drawn to interior design, and the placement and combination of patterns, colors, and textures to create a visual story. Her paintings are formed in a similar way. She includes figures who are intended to blend or “pop” from their surroundings. The figures are integral to the work, but not more or less significant than the objects, color, and shapes surrounding them. She considers herself a figurative painter, as the human form is always present. In addition, she is interested in depicting interior spaces that are equal to the significance of the figure. Her intention is to create a hyper-saturated visual environment that a figure inhabits, or vice-versa. The spaces are domestic, but intended to be pushed to a heightened or alternative version of the domestic.
Kim Kimbro is an American painter born in Connecticut. She attended the Norwich Free Academy and received a classical education in painting and drawing, graduating with national awards and honors. She received a BFA from the Parsons School of Design/New School for Social Research in New York. She currently lives and works in Los Angeles.
Being a self-taught visual artist from Long Beach, California, Kristina's paintings have appeared in various galleries and private collections; one piece in particular for Matt Altman from the hit show Million Dollar Listing. She spends her days rendering many subjects including landscapes and cityscapes, but has a special affinity for portraiture. Her current work focuses on feminine portraiture, consisting of casual acquaintances naturally posed to suit their individual auras. Her process begins by wielding oil and acrylic paints, which evolves into: taking a step back, staring, shaping, re-evaluating, starting over, procrastinating, resuming, and eventually finishing. By balancing the dichotomy between abstract and realism, each model ultimately achieves an authentic yet caricatured portrayal.
MELINDA R. SMITH
Melinda R. Smith is a contemporary artist living in Los Angeles, California. As a lifelong storyteller and poet, Melinda’s primary interest as a painter lies in portraiture, for it is the art of portraiture that gets to the essence of what it is to be human. It is Melinda’s aim as a portraitist to reach not only beneath the surface, but beyond surface likeness to reveal the inner person being portrayed. “Sometimes, an exact physical likeness is less important to me than capturing that quality, that je ne sais quoi, that makes a person truly unique. I’m after soul and spirit, that timeless, deathless self that character at once embodies and contradicts. For me, the complexity of character is everything, it is the axis around which storytelling revolves.” Melinda’s emphasis on storytelling is based on her belief that in the end, story is what remains, that it’s through story that we have our dialogue with the future. It is therefore her hope that the subject in the completed painting is able to tell the viewer, both present and future, a multifaceted story about him- or herself and, ultimately, our shared human condition.
MICHELLE RIVERA SPROMBERG
Portraiture goes beyond recording a face. It's an exchange between the artist and the subject. It's a conversation of energy and comfort. After photographing her subject, Michelle feels an overwhelming sense of gratitude towards the person who shared with her both their confidence and reticence. Every portrait has a story and emotion behind it; a memory about that person and who they were with her at the moment the image was captured.
Mitchelito Orquiola was born on the island of Cebu in the Philippines. He immigrated with his family to the United States in 1972.
Orquiola considers himself a student of life and the dynamics of human nature. His education in art and culture began early in childhood with the martial arts and its philosophies. In fact, he still continues to train and teach to this present day.
Learning how to find internal peace within life’s turbulence led him to the exposure and studies of music, literature, languages, and theatre. In practicing these other art forms Mitchelito was introduced to painting. Today, he is a completely self-taught painter with an open creative style and mind.
He is the artist that started the Mar Vista Art walk and acts as the Executive Curator to the quarterly event. He is also, a live painter that performs at art events, galleries, concert stages, and even weddings.
You can find his work on social media using his full name, Mitchelito Orquiola. Check out his Facebook for tidbits about the artist's life and Instagram for his finished works.
Outi Harma is originally from Lapland, Finland. Over twenty years ago her move to the warm, multicultural city of Los Angeles was the catalyst that catapulted her creative expression. Her images create exciting worlds that merge the visible and invisible. Her years of exploration in movement, dance and performance art brings a wide variety of characters, fluidity and emotion to her paintings. Her color palette is bold and vibrant. Her main character appears to be archetypal, mythological female who often illuminates soulful, spiritual power along with earthly whimsicality. Her paintings can take you from the beautiful, playful childlike realm to the spiritual and physiological depths where your soul expands.
This is how she describes her painting process:
“There are two main ways that I start my paintings. The most common method is improvisational. I start with mixing and playing with colors. Images begin to appear spontaneously as I paint. I love being surprised by what will manifest on the canvas and letting it tell me a story, instead of having a preconceived idea of how the painting will look like. Then there are times when I'm in a meditative state, in movement or just sitting in stillness when an image will come to me and keep reappearing over time until I paint it.”
Outi’s twenty-year love with ecstatic dance along with acting and theatre is a rich source of inspiration. They feed her painting and vise versa. She feels very fortunate to be able to dive into a creative mystical world through dance, painting and theatre where she can discover, embody and express different feelings and characters. She finds it extremely healing and vital for her well-being.
Preston, who is a published artist, writer, educator and voice over actor, earned an M.F.A. (with honors) in Illustration from the Academy of Art in San Francisco and a B.A. in Applied Arts from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.
Involved with social issues and an avid artist rights advocate, he has been recognized by the Los Angeles City Council for his volunteer work and contribution to the growth of the arts in L.A. In 2013 and 2014, respectively, some of his work was selected and published in North Light Books’ - Acrylic Works: Best of Acrylic Competition and Acrylic Artist magazine and one of his portraits was selected for inclusion in the International Society of Acrylic Painters Best of Acrylic International Competition. His illustration work got an award from the Adobe Design Achievement Awards in 2011 and he received an award of recognition from the Phi Kappa Phi Honors Society and the National Scholars Honors Society in 2007. In addition, he was honored twice with the Artistic Director Award for Set Design/Scenic Art from the Valley Theatre League for productions of the Road Theater Co. and he was an Artist-in-Residence for the A.I.E.A.C.
He has found success as an artist in the Los Angeles area and is experienced in creating book and magazine illustrations (digitally and traditionally), digital graphics (DTP), fine art (portraits, landscapes, fantasy) and scenic art/murals. His award-winning work continues to be exhibited locally, nationally and internationally; an exhibition of his “Twisted Teddys” series took place at the Hive Gallery in Los Angeles. He has traveled extensively; living & working at times in Norway, England, Italy and Japan.
RICHARD S. CHOW
Richard is a fine art award-wining photographer in Los Angles California. His work is showcased in solo and juried exhibits across the U.S., internationally published and featured in several private collections.
His interest in photography began at a young age, and his focus in documentary and fine art practice started about a decade ago. Richard continues to experience and examine all aspects of the medium – from homemade shooting devices to phone & high tech digital cameras. His objective is still of achieving imagery that pushes the boundaries of the medium of photography, both in aesthetics and concept.
He's won awards four years in a row starting in 2013. These accolades have come from Lucie Foundation’s IPA International Photography Awards; exhibited in photo l.a. Fair every January since 2013. His solo shows were held at the Cause Gallery at the renowned Chung-King Road Art District in Los Angeles and Gallery Presents (Phantom Gallery LA) in Hawthorne CA. Richard is also a producer for OPEN SHOW (LA Chapter), a global non-profit organization that provides a forum for powerful dialogue between the public, collectors, partners, and artists.
Richard is currently represented by Gallery 825 (LAAA) and Gloria Delson Contemporary Arts (GDCA). He is a curator at the Los Angeles Photo Curator and a member of Los Angeles Center of Photography (LACP). He served as Vice-Chair and Chairman of the Board for the nonprofit Create Now, whose mission is to transform lives for at-risk youth through arts mentoring. He is a graduate of California State University. His body of work can be viewed on his website, www.richardschow.com
Roy considers himself to be a student of the human condition. He is a barometer that measures the relative pressure of society. As a result, he is an artist.
His work is most influenced by the struggle of Van Gogh, the business acumen of Picasso and the subject matter of the German expressionists.
He is a self-taught drawer and painter and an educated sculptor with a BFA from SUNY Oneonta. For him, art is not an end product pursuit but rather a spiritual process that allows him to meditate through daily practice.
His purpose is to be an observer of life and to better understand himself and his place in the world. He aims to touch others and allow himself to be touched through deep spiritual connections.
He explores these themes through mask-like portraiture, stylized landscapes, woodblock, and monoprints.
The face is a mask; a covering to protect the soul. The mask is a disguise to hide what one is by appearing to be something else. Inherently, we are all the same inside and out whether human or animal, we are all spiritual beings. His work explores a desire to communicate effectively, to facilitate a conversation between the viewer and himself through the art and create a soul-to-soul connection.
Rude Calderón was born in San Jose, Costa Rica, where he spent the first seven years of his life. His family immigrated with him to Los Angeles, California in 1964 where he has remained all his life. Rude’s father apprenticed and worked with his uncle Manuel Zuñiga, in his sculpture studio, creating religious sculpture in the Spanish baroque tradition. His deep respect for materials and craftsmanship is rooted in this family history.
Stone sculpture is at the center of his work. The past fifteen years have been largely devoted to this medium. His artwork shows a reverence towards the handling and natural appearance of materials that infer the omnipresent mystery of nature. The latest public art commission awarded by the City of Laguna Beach to him and his team collaborator, Roberto Delgado, installed in June of 2016. The City of Burbank also awarded them, a public art sculpture proposal, installed in Songdo Central Park, Incheon, South Korea, in November of 2015. This project was part of a sister city art exchange program. His first public art commission from 2004, is titled: 'Leaping Fish, Nature’s Cycles', a two piece, site-specific sculpture executed out of New Mexico travertine. It was awarded to him by Los Angeles County Arts Commission, at Belvedere Park Lake as part of the East Los Angeles Civic Center Renovation Project. This work beckons the viewer to circle the lake and the sculptures, thus embracing one in its narrative cycle of renewal. His private commission sculptures are approached with the same vision of dynamic integration that allows the natural force imprinted into the stone through millenniums, to inform the form and spirit of the idea. Ever-unfolding consciousness and the energies that drive our physical and inner world are a source of great interest and inspiration in his work.
His paintings, sculptures, and prints have been widely exhibited at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Laguna Art Museum, Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery, UCLA/Armand Hammer Museum of Art, as well as FM Fine Art Gallery, Los Angeles; Frank Pictures Gallery, Santa Monica; The Art Art Project, Woodland Hills; Ave 50 Gallery, Highland Park; Ventura Artists’ Union Gallery; Tropico de Nopal Gallery, Los Angeles. Nationally in: Anchorage, Alaska; Texas Art Museum, Jose Galvez Gallery in Tucson, Arizona; The Mexican Fine Arts Museum in Chicago, Illinois; The Brandywine Institute in Philadelphia, PA. Internationally his work has shown in: St. Petersburg, Russia, Free Gallery; Amerika Haus Berlin, U.S. Cultural Center, Berlin, Germany; Mexico City, Tijuana and Juarez, Mexico; Santiago, Chile; Galicia, Spain; and El Museo del Niño, San Jose, Costa Rica.
Calderon has been an insightful instructor of Stone Sculpture and Introduction to Sculpture at Otis College of Art & Design since 2002, Teale Street Sculpture Studio, and Barnsdall Art Center. His approach to sculptural creation has moved many students to recognize their own inspiration while applying the power of artistic craftsmanship.
SALLY ANN FIELD
Sally Ann Field was born in Sandusky, New York. She grew up in a creative household where the Polaroid was omnipresent. She moved to Florida to study design and became an award-winning art director and designer. She then relocated to Los Angeles and spent a decade as an art director and stylist, eventually moving behind the camera into commercial and fine art photography.
Sally's work has been showcased in exhibitions at the Los Angeles Center of Photography, the Light Box Gallery, in Astoria, OR, the DNJ Gallery, Los Angeles, SE Center for Photography in Greenville, SC, amongst others. Her work has been published in Don’t Take Pictures, Huffington Post, the Los Angeles Times, Feature Shoot, and Click Magazine. Sally’s photographs have garnered awards from Leica and she gives back to various organizations through her photographic efforts. Sally lives and works in Hollywood, California with her American Pit Bull Terrier (and muse) Delilah Bean Field.
Silvia is a young Italian artist and filmmaker working in Los Angeles, California. Her artwork can be found in many private homes throughout the United States, England, Germany, Switzerland and Italy. She is a member of the Los Angeles Art Association (LAAA), the Pacific Palisades Art Association, Women in Film, and shows her work in Los Angeles and internationally. Her work has also been broadcasted by FOX television.
Without a formal education in art, Silvia began her adventure in art and painting while studying film directing at UCLA Extension. She continued her education at the American Film Institute in Los Angeles, where she met her art mentor, Joe Blaustein. Thanks to his guidance and encouragement, Silvia was able to embark on the adventure of realizing her dormant passions of painting and drawing.
Silvia’s visual research is based on bright colors and their endlessly surprising combinations, applied to revealing the individual identity of people, animals and places. She applies her fascination with the chromatic world to figurative and expressionistic subjects, with a whimsical result anchored in a recognizable reality while at the same time hinting at unimaginable elsewheres. The classic belief that “the eyes are the mirrors of the soul” is at the core of her portraiture.
Her first full-length documentary “The Dog and the Duck”, featuring the life and students of her extraordinary elder Angelino art mentor, is premiering in the US in late 2016. Also on the horizon is the short documentary she produced, “Joe Blaustein and the Flood of Florence”.
Susan Lizotte is an artist living and working in Los Angeles California. Her paintings blend figurative and abstract elements and have been exhibited in the United States and internationally. She is currently working on her series entitled Mercury, which investigates the misuse and abuse of the element mercury for the last five centuries. Susan has been a contributing writer for Figure/Ground Communication for their Artist Series interviews. Susan made her curatorial debut in January 2015 with “Traces of the Gesture” for the Torrance Art Museum. Her most recent curatorial show, “Within the Cave”, was for Durden and Ray in September 2015.
"Art is my life and my life is art." Took Ono
Art has led Taly's heart on a journey from a young age. When she was four years old, her father became mentally ill and she turned to art, music, drawing, dancing and theater as an outlet to express herself. Her creativity brought a sense of security and love into her life.
Even though her journey began at a young age, it was in 2005 where Taly began experimenting with painting as a part of the road to spiritual growth. Art has continued to form who she is, allowing her to evolve and navigate through life. From oil on canvas to acrylic to mixed media, her art has been transformed in so many ways.
Taly has been able to channel her energy through colors and paint, finding a deeper meaning beneath the surface. The paint colors possess a special significance for Taly. From her spirit to her hands through a brush and onto canvas her creativity and self expression come alive. She sees art as a way of connecting. In her paintings there lives a desire to spark the creative being and expression within the viewer.
She cherishes the moments when someone sees her paintings and brings them to life in their own imagination. She wants her paintings to take you on your own journey and inspire you to embrace creative energy. That way, we all stay connected through art.
Terry Tripp is a visual artist who works in painting, illustration, photography, and animation. His most current artwork is in expressionist paintings where he works with oil and mixed media on canvas. Tripp creates vibrantly colorful images of cartoony and disproportionate characters and scenes pulling from a 1980’s pop-culture palette from his childhood. He works the canvas with rough brush strokes as he freely transfers thoughts and images onto the canvas like a pencil in a personal sketchbook. Words, phrases, and sometimes even short poems are written, crossed out, and replaced in the paintings to create fractured narratives. Although Tripp’s images may appear fun and playful, upon closer examination, they can reflect an uncanny underlining nature.
Tripp currently resides in Southern California where he creates and teaches high school art. Tripp is also a creative writer. He graduated from California State University, Bakersfield with a BA in English and a BA in Psychology. He also earned an MA in Education from Point Loma Nazarene University and an MFA in Visual Art from Azusa Pacific University.
With almost 50 years of experience in commercial and fine art, Todd Cooper has won numerous awards, but considers himself a blue-collar, working artist.
He paints the things he loves like old trucks, young women, and the historical American West. Several times a year he draws caricatures at festivals, events and historical reenactments. Cooper regularly accepts portrait commissions in oils or charcoal.
Cooper also illustrates books, instructions and medical journals. He is the founder and former president of the Lakes & Valleys Art Guild. He currently lives in a small mountain community in the high desert, north of Los Angeles. It isn't near anything and not on the way to anywhere, and that's just the way he likes it.
VINCENT A. BENITEZ
Vincent M. Benitez is a Los Angeles-based artist. Benitez was traditionally trained in figure painting and illustration at Associates in Art, a small atelier in Sherman Oaks, California. Beginning in 2005, he decided to pursue his own studies and technique. He has since been shaping and establishing his own style of painting in many Southern California galleries and underground art shows.