Sunday, February 21, 2016

Red Exotic Flower

To win this painting click here.

I must admit, I have been having lots of fun painting flowers.  My favorite color is red and I really wanted to paint a red elegant flower.

I first started, as always with a light pencil sketch.

I then continued with the background on the left and eventually started painting the petals.  I felt like blocking in the bigger parts of the paintings would give "life" to the painting.

I then continued working from the outside in on the right side of the canvas.

Finally I began painting the inside of the flower.  Here it wasn't so important to me to follow the sketch.  I just painted where I thought would look better with each color.

Here is the completed painting.

To win this painting click here.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Purple Flowers

You can go bid on this painting here.

Before I started this painting, I had been thinking about doing a small painting.  I'm used to painting on big canvases and thought this would be a new challenge.  This purple flower seemed to be the perfect subject for a small 5 in. x 7 in. canvas.  I must say I liked the challenge.  There is something intimate about painting so small.

I first began as I usually do, with a light pencil sketch.  Right away I started painting the main flower; the purple flower.

I then continued painting in the background.  Other than some smaller flowers, I just wanted splashes of color than went well with the purple, blue, and yellow from the main flower.

I liked the red/orange color against the purple of the flower and then green of the background.  I must admit I really got into the painting and did not take another photo until the painting was finished. 

Go bid on it on ebay here.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Bath Flowers Series

I have started a new series entitled Bath Flowers.  This series was inspired by the Metamorphosis painting (photo below).


Being a photographer allows me to set up exactly what I envision for a painting, photograph it, and use the photographs I like from the photo shoot as reference material for my paintings.  I can add, change, or delete things (such as color, add objects, etc...) digitally or I can do it on the canvas as I am painting.

With the first photo shoot, I had an idea of a female subject inside a bathtub surrounding by flowers.  From there came the inspiration for this first painting entitled The Beauty and her Flowers.

As always I started with a pencil sketch on canvas.  I began the painting by starting with the face and the portion of the hair next to the face.  By painting this portion of the hair while the paint is still wet, the edges are smooth and blend well with the paint on the face.

Taken in Kat's studio
I then continued to finish up the hair.

Finishing up the hair

Next I wanted to work on the background.  I felt that in order to get the "feel" for the painting and make sure they colors of the subject were correct, the background needed to be worked on.  I wanted to add some yellows to the shadow to make the painting a little warmer.

Working on the background

Next, I went back down to the neck area as the face now felt like it was floating.  I then moved up to the arm.

Working on the arm

Lastly.  I started working on the flowers.  I wanted colors that where going to pop.  In the original image, the flowers were white and red.  However, I felt like an orange-red color would really pop.

Bathflowers by Kat Vazquez
Stay tuned for more in this series.

To purchase this artwork visit:

Monday, November 9, 2015


Metamorphosis was inspired by the same photoshoot that inspired The Goddess from my previous post (see image below).  The series is about a woman out in nature who ends up becoming one with nature; where nature takes over her.  To me its more than human meets nature.  Its more like a change that happens within us when we encounter something in our lives that we obsess over and ends up consuming us.  In some situations it is a good thing and therefore it turns into a beautiful thing, in others, however, the reverse is true.

The Goddess (Available for sale at

I first started picking out the canvas.  I stretch my own canvas so this meant really thinking about the stretcher bars.  I chose this long canvas  because I feel like it makes it look more icononic.  After stretching the canvas and priming it, I lightly sketched out the image on to the canvas with a pencil.  I then started working in sections like I usually do.  I felt like defining the shoulder area and face would dictate the feel for the whole painting.  This area, I feel, is the most important as it sets the mood of the entire painting.

Metamorphosis in progress

I then continued to define the face.  The face is what most people look at first and so it was imperative the mood I desired the viewers to see was "written" all over it.

Metamorphosis in progress

I knew the flowers, butterflies, and birds were going to be what communicates part of the message here, so I left that for the end and focused instead on the garment wrapped around the model.  I used highlights and shadows to give it shape and volume.

Metamorphosis in progress

Finally my focus was on the flowers, butterflies, bird, and background.  When working from photographs, artists must be mindful that a camera does not see the same way the eye sees in the moment the photograph was captured.  The flowers in the photograph were not very defined and therefore I took a look at it for overall color and then put it down.  I worked on the flowers without looking at a photograph.  I solely focused on the colors, shape, and making the petals stand out.  I painted thickly on the canvas and mixed the colors right on the canvas.

Metamorphosis in the studio (Available for sale at

This painting along with others will be exhibited at my first solo show titled Life.  It will be held at Tulsa Girls Art School in Tulsa, OK from 12/3/15 until 1/2/16.  There will be an opening reception on 12/3/15 from 6pm until 8pm.  Hope to see you there.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

The Goddess!

I am a photographer as well as a painter.  I came up with an idea for a photography series about a woman out in nature who ends up becoming one with nature; where nature takes over her.  My partner, Candi, is very supportive of me and is often my model for many of my projects without complaining about my usually crazy ideas.

This canvas is quite large in size at 5 ft by 6 ft so the logistics of painting it were somewhat challenging.  I often had to stand on a stool to reach the top of the canvas.  Here was my process.

I first started with a light pencil sketch.  I like to paint wet-on-wet which means painting on top of layers that are still wet.  I love mixing colors on the canvas itself rather than mixing on my palette.  To avoid the paint drying I started painting by sections.  Many times artist start painting in the eyes.  I purposely avoided starting with the eyes.  I like to paint thickly (although it can't be appreciated on the picture) and so instead of starting out with a thin wash of paint, I dove right in.  I started with the forehead and hair line and began to give it volume through the use of highlights and shadows.

The Goddess in progress at the studio

I then decided to continue painting the face and adjusting the pencil sketch as needed. The eyes look really creepy without being painted in. 

The Goddess in progress

My partner Candi surprised me in the studio.  She was very excited with my progress and wanted to pose next to the painting.  It is easier to really see the size of the canvas with her posing next to it.

The Goddess in progress with model Candi Estrada posing next to it

Finally, the eyes are painted in and they don't look so creepy anymore.  I found that painting in the face and then focusing on the eyes helped me getting the colors in the eyes right.  Many times we think of the white of the eyes as being pure white, when in reality they rarely look pure white depending on the lighting and the fact that our upper eyelids cast a shadow.

The Goddess in progress

I then begin to paint her hair.  Painting dark hair is quite challenging as sometimes it is hard to see the highlights and shadows that make it look like it has volume rather than being flat.

The Goddess in progress

While I am working in sections, I often step back to analyze what the painting needs next and whether an already painted section needs to be changed or retouched.  I continue to paint in sections.but I try to move around the painting a bit.  I decided to start with her shoulder instead of right under the neck.  This allowed the paint to dry a bit to avoid smudging the edges to show a clear distinction between the model's skin and that of the snake.

The Goddess in progress

While stepping away and looking at the painting, I decided I needed to work on the background.  Often, we as artist paint in the background as an after-thought not realizing that the background can also be used to "tell" the story.

The Goddess in progress

I had actually not really penciled in what I wanted in the background from the beginning so that was tweaked as I focused on the background itself and the story I wanted to tell.

The Goddess in progress

As humans we are constantly trying to find symmetry in everything.  When studying composition you learn that asymmetry is more interesting than symmetry.  I therefore avoided placing another tree on the opposite side.  I felt it would take away from her intense stare.

The Goddess in progress

Here is a close up of the tree.  I first applied paint with a brush and then used a palette knife to smudge the paint around to give it texture.  I also smudged the edges to make it seem like the tree was behind her and keep the focus on the subject itself.

Detail of The Goddess in progress

And here is the finished painting.  It took about a month to finish this painting.  I had never actually made a painting this big.  I find that like most artist, I go through stages while painting.  At first is excitement over starting a new painting.  Then I go through a roller coaster of frustration and delight.  At one moment I'm not so sure its looking good, then I love it, then I don't.  At the end I was satisfied with the outcome.

The Goddess (Available for sale at



My name is Kat Vazquez and I am an artist. I  have created this blog in order to share my works in progress whether they are personal projects or commissioned original artwork.  For me it is all about creating!  Creating artwork is my passion and I want to be able to share with you that passion.  Stay tuned!