Ready, Set, Getty…

At the Getty for panel discussion on “what does Blue mean” with Mas Subramanian, Garrett Morris, Catherine McKinley and Carol Mavor


“What does Blue mean?” Panel Discussion at the Getty 

If you’re in LA this week be sure to check out the Panel Discussion on “What Does Blue Mean?” At the GETTY CENTER, Thursday, June 8, 2017, at 7 pm, Harold M. Williams Auditorium. 

Free | Advance ticket required. 

Panelists include Prof Mas Subramanian, inventor of YInMnBlue, authors Catherine McKinley and Carol Mavor, and actor/comedian/singer Garrett Morris. ‘Blue describes emotional states, musical and literary genres, and moral codes. And yet, historically, humans have found the color itself notably difficult to pin down. How did blue come to occupy its singular scientific and cultural significance? What relationships exist between the history of blue pigments and the wealth of meanings the term conveys today?’ Come explore the science and sentiment of the color Blue.

 (Image courtesy Getty Museum – Uvena Novae Villiae, about 1854, Anna Atkins and Anne Dixon. Cyanotype. The J. Paul Getty Museum)

Fractal Blues

Turning YInMn blue pigment powder into watercolor paint was such fun, but the added bonus was the fabulous fractal I got in the process!  Now is that not a color to die for. 

All the shades of YInMn Blue

When #YInMn blue was first discovered, Mas Subramanian’s team didn’t stop with just one compound. True to nature Mas and his team, went on to tweek the composition to see if that would affect the color, and sure enough it did and how beautifully so. Here is a spectrum of blues shades by just tweeting the manganese content in the compound. They are all shades of YInMn Blue, and they are such a joy to make into watercolor paints! 

Celebrating the Blue that never fades! YInMnBlue, that is…

On May 5, The College of Science, Oregon Sate Univesity, hosted “The Colorful World of Pigments,” a public event as part of SPARK, Oregon State’s yearlong celebration of the intersection of the arts and science. This series of events celebrated the meeting point of science, art, color and cultural trends in Mas Subramanian’s groundbreaking pigment discovery of #YInMn blue.

This blue pigment discovered by Mas Subramanian and his research team at Oregon state university’s chemistry lab has captured widespread attention in various fields including fashion and industry not to mention the obvious fields of science and art. A panel discussion featured experts from Crayola, Nike, Shepherd Color Co., Harvard Pigments Museum and others. The highlight of the event was when Crayola’s CEO,  Smith Holland announced that crayola would be introducing a new blue crayon color inspired by #YInMn blue! Here are some pictures from the event!!!

Mas Presenting YInMnBlue…


Crayola’s Big Announcement


Kids at the event trying out the new sample crayon…


Kids of all ages at the Crayola Wall Mural

It was an event to remember!

View from my Window 

After the snow…


Snow on the Meadows

I love to go for long walks whenever I can and I always bring my sketchbook along for that quick capture of a scene or a mood that strikes without warning. Walking in the meadows at Longwood Gardens after a snowfall takes on a whole new meaning. The blue and purple hues of the distant wintry horizon, the soft fluffs of snow clinging to the seed heads, the dry grass that once stood upright now bent over weighed down by the icy snow clumps, the melting snow frozen in dripping icicles on the twigs and shrubs that catch the sunlight and scatter it into flashes of rainbow colors, the crunch of the frozen snow beneath you feet, and that smell of the frigid air that surrounds you, all make for an atmospheric experience that words fail to describe in full. Here’s my pictorial description in purples…

and here’s another one in moody blues…

Playing with Purples 

Everywhere you look out side, everything is covered in white. Three days of snow and ice storms, three days of painting snowy wintery scenes, and I needed color in my life! My  blue orchids are blooming indoors, and on this cold winter day they bring such brightness and color to the indoors. At present these orchid and the winter jasmine outside my window are all that’s blooming around here. So I’ve been playing around with purples and blues. Here are some different version of blue orchids and my play with purples…

And then without the oranges…

And now that I’ve got my color fix and used up a lot of my purples, I can go back to painting snow again! I’ll post my winter scenes in my next post.

Happy Year of the Fire Rooster!

Happy New Year to you all. Based on the Chinese calendar, 2017 is the year of the Fire Rooster. “The Chinese people say that this year people will be more polite and less stubborn, but they will have the tendency to complicate things.” Hmmmm, I wonder if this was written with anyone particular in mind!

“As they see it, the year 2017 is a year dominated by the orientation towards progress, honor and maximum integrity, people learning to temper their ardor.” Again, I’m wondering if would apply to the leaders of certain countries I have in mind…just saying!

Nevertheless, not to get too political here, I thought I’d honor the rooster today, the first day of 2017. Now, I love painting birds, but for reasons unclear to me, I’ve never really had an interest in roosters. I’ve seen them on farms and often enough while at a pumpkin or fall festival I’ve had a chance to see some quite gorgeous plumage on these birds, and yet I’ve never really sketched one. So today I got started on one, and it turned out alright…for a first try!

I did give it a second try, aiming for more texture…

Having stuck with the same color scheme the second time, although not intentional, I thought I’d go a bit quieter for the third try.

Inktober Sketches

It’s almost time to say goodbye to October with just one day to go. So, whatever happened to #Inktober? Well, let’s just say I have been inking, I just haven’t managed to post any yet. I knew #inktober would be a challenge for me, but it wasn’t the sketching part, as I sketch everyday. In fact I’m an obsessive Sketcher, but to me sketching usually involves diving right in with brush and paint. Be it watercolor or acrylic, I never sketch any pen or pencil under lines. So picking up a pen to sketch felt somewhat strange at first. Of course I’m all about color, so I had to add color to my sketches to complete them. But coloring within the lines was even tougher. So I did the only thing I knew to do, I simply let loose…Here are some sketches from week one of October-

Two are quick warmup sketches of my daughter, one while she was cat napping after a long day and the other her most coveted seat on the floor leaning on the couch watching CNN whilst texting on her iPhone, ofcourse! i also managed a quick attempt to capture Fareed Zakaria on GPS on a Sunday morning.

Of course I couldn’t let go of color, so the next few are watercolor on ink.

A pot of ornamental chillies, a fallen tree in the woods, the meadows and farmhouse at Longwood Gardens and of course how could I not sketch the lotus ponds at Longwood.

These sketches are done in 3-5 minutes and are meant to capture the essence of the moment and subject, so not perfect. I like doing these loose sketches, they are spontaneous and more lively.