Tuesday, December 27, 2011


There are many kinds of agaves, but for the production of Tequila only the Agave Azul qualifies. And, it has to be grown in Jalisco or a few other surrounding areas to be allowed to be made into the drink that bears the name Tequila.
The Agave Azul grows for approximately 8 years in order to produce a mature core, which is called "piña", or pineapple. The plant is extremely resistant, it can go months without water and then take extreme moisture, which is ideal in a region where it rains almost half a year and the other half is dry.
Agave off shoots are planted one foot apart, in straight rows. The space between rows must be kept weeded so that all the nutrients in the soil will benefit the agave, not other plants.

Volcan de Tequila and the Blue Agave

The Volcan de Tequila commands the view, all the way from Guadalajara to Tequila and beyond. This volcano is no longer active, its height has already eroded a bit, but the core of its chimney, which is made of the hardest rock, will last for a very long time to come. It can be easily seen in the center of the crater and the locals gave it the nickname "La Tetilla" or "The Nipple".
The last eruption of the Volcan de Tequila was some 200,000 years ago. In an area of about 40 kilometers around the volcano, the rock and ashes expelled during that explosion created the rich soil on which the blue agave grows today, and the blue agave, of course, is the raw ingredient for the famous alcoholic beverage, Tequila.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Water and Boats

In Mexico you can still find those charming, old fishing boats, paint long rubbed off, barely seaworthy, sometimes made of real wood, mixed in together with more modern boats.
I saw this unassuming scene in the harbor of the port town of San Blas, in the State of Nayarit, during a plein air painting trip with a friend and fellow artist.
Glad I finally got around to painting it!

Panamerican Games 2011

In just a few days the Panamerican Games 2011 will be inaugurated and athletes from 42 nations will gather in Guadalajara, Mexico, to compete.

People and water are some of my favorite topics, so it seemed obvious that I should paint a swimmer.

Good luck to all competitors and good luck to the people of Guadalajara, who during almost three weeks will have to endure traffic jams on many city streets, because one lane will be set aside for the exclusive use of participants and vehicles that are officially connected with the games.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Puerto Vallarta

Not long ago I participated in a group art show in the Peter Gray Museum in Puerto Vallarta. During our stay at the Friendly Hola Hotel, we saw this gorgeous sunset, typical and very normal for Puerto Vallarta. The scene was so picture book perfect that I hesitated whether I should paint it or not. I guess, I could not resist after all.
This painting is part of my skies series.

Cumulus Clouds

Again, rain, or almost rain, is the topic of this painting, which is part of my skies series.

During the Rainy Season in the Caribbean, beautiful clouds gather every afternoon, the sky gets dark, almost purple and the contrast between the water, the clouds and the sky is gorgeous. Could not resist, even though nature is the better painter.


Blitz is German for lightning. I think it is a good word, very fast, very descriptive the way it sounds, the "i" conveying light.

While painting this scene, I tried to see it all happening in slow motion, with sparks illuminating way more than the exact path of the flash, but still with the surprise element of a bolt out of the blue. Or, the purple, in this case.

Blitz is part of my skies series.


It feels so good being in a dry place and watching the rain coming down in sheets!
Even though I painted this piece in my studio and from a photograph, it was more like doing a plein air painting, because I have seen and painted such scenes on location so many times. Just this time I didn´t have to pack up in a hurry and run!
"Rain" is part of my skies series.


Rain is a fascinating topic.
"Night Rain" belongs to my skies series, even though more than half of it´s space is filled with solid matter. The rain cannot be seen, but felt. It is pitch black night and the moisture in the air refracts every droplet where it meets a street light, the asphalt is glistening in front of car´s headlights and contours get blurred by the blinding play of dark and light.
Just as we move fast in the rain, trying to get home dry and safe, merely paying attention to what´s most important, I painted this picture very quickly, with as little detail as possible.