Blog

Announcing A New Workshop in California


La Jolla Blvd.

 

"California has been my home for nearly half of my life, and I have spent the majority of the time in San Diego.  California's southernmost city holds a special place in my heart, for it was here that I made a life-giving career change and became a full-time painter.  The abundant beauty of my 'adopted' home has been the inspiration for many watercolor scenes since I started painting in 2005.  Thanks to San Diego's mild climate, I have become an avid plein-air painter and quite often I can be found traipsing its nooks and crannies on a quest for a new setting to paint."

 

I said this in my latest book "PAINTING SAN DIEGO: 100 Plein-Air Watercolors of San Diego Landscapes" (published June 2014).  Even after the book project was completed, I still live up to my words and go out to paint whenever I have a chance at home.

 

"La Jolla Blvd.," another one of those quick outdoor sketches I so enjoy doing, is from a couple of weeks ago to depict warm summer light of Southern California.  For something like this, I usually spend less than an hour from the beginning to the finish.  I often get asked what would be a good way to learn how to paint quickly or loosely.  Speaking from my experience, I can say it is very helpful if you try often working outside and painting from nature.  I believe, through an intimate conversation with nature, you will develop an ability to capture the very essence of what you see and what inspires you.

 

I am happy to announce my new 3-day weekend workshop in Southern California (Westminster, CA, February 20-22, 2015).  This class will be conducted indoors but, in my demonstrations, I will show my thought process as if I am painting outdoors.  If you're interested in attending or have any questions on my workshop, please contact Catalyst

 

 

Painting on location, La Jolla Blvd., San Diego, California

 

 

La Jolla Blvd.

 

A larger digital file available on request.

Media: Original watercolor on paper

Image Size: 13 x 19 inches (33 x 48 cm)

Frame/Mat: No

Purchase: Please send me an email for details.

 

 

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NEW BOOK: Painting San Diego, 100 Plein-Air Watercolors of San Diego Landscapes


New book now available

 

I am very pleased to announce that my new art book is now available online.

 

PAINTING SAN DIEGO: 100 Plein-Air Watercolors of San Diego Landscapes is a result of my recent 6-month-long outdoor painting journey through San Diego County, California, my adopted home of 20 years.  The book contains 100 images of never-before-seen watercolors of mine, all painted en plein air between November 2013 and May 2014, photos and descriptions of most locations, plenty of practical tips and several step-by-step demonstrations.  120 pages.

 

Foreword was written by Michael Campos of Campos Photography, a fine art photographer and a dear friend whom I have been working with since 2006.

 

To learn more or order, please visit this link.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Recent Magazine Features


Bucharest, Romania I

 

I am deeply honored to have my work featured in the 2014 March issue of Artists & Illustrators (published by Chelsea Magazine Co., Ltd., United Kingdom).  Ms. Jenny White gave me an interview for my article.  She asked me a lot of great questions about my thoughts on painting watercolor as well as teaching it.  I hope you will enjoy reading it if you have a chance.

 

Thanks to the article, one of my street scene paintings included in it "Bucharest, Romania I (2012)" saw the light of day.  This work reminds me of my visit to this delightful city where I just walked around, sketched, took some photos without any itinerary to speak of.  When I was in the historic center and saw this view of a street with a domed building in the back, I knew I'd paint it.  Here are some sketches and a photo of the street.

 

 

 

From my travel sketchbook

 

 

(photo) Historic center of Bucharest

 

 

In December 2013, I was one of the watercolor painters featured in Pratique des Arts, Hors série aquarelle (published by CapElitis Groupe, France).  An 8-page article written by Ms. Stéphanie Portal who interviewed me includes a step-by-step demo of a painting of Ine, a small fishing village of Kyoto, Japan.  For this article, too, I was asked some thought-provoking questions.  I also gave some practical tips on plein-air painting.  I am hugely honored for the recognition.

 

 

 

Covers of two magazines where my work was featured recently

 

 

 

Bucharest, Romania I

 

Click for an enlarged view.

Media: Original watercolor on paper

Image Size: 21.5 x 14.25 inches (54.5 x 36 cm)

Frame/Mat: No

Purchase: Please send me an email for details.

 

 

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My New Book "Bretagne - Breizh"


Café, Pont-Aven, France I

 

One way to really understand French culture is to get to know the regions that make up the country.  Each region is so unique with different character, history, climate, cuisine, etc., and visitors need to spend some time within a particular region for an in-depth look.  After numerous visits to France, I'm just beginning to understand myself how deep their rich diversity is.

 

This past summer, my travel destination was the region of Brittany (Bretagne in French, Breizh in Breton) in the peninsula between the English Channel and the Bay of Biscay.  Tucked away in the northwest corner of France, people there even have a different language called Breton.  It was a pure joy to drive around the region to paint here and there.  After the trip, I decided to put together several on-site sketches and paintings inspired by the travel to create a book.  I am pleased to announce the release of "Bretagne - Breizh" which contains 31 pieces of my watercolor works of various places I visited in Brittany.

 

I will teach a 5-day watercolor course in Brittany in 2014.  Click this link for more details.

 

 

Click here to order this book

 

 

Café, Pont-Aven, France I

 

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 11.5 x 8.25 inches (29 x 21 cm)

Purchase: Not for sale

 

 

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Fish Market, Venice, Italy I, Interior Painting


Fish Market, Venice I

 

Being an artist, by and large, is a solitary profession but it is good to get together with other like-minded artist friends from time to time.  When I do, I may paint with them, visit an exhibition, attend an opening, exchange information and ideas or share a meal.  Whatever that may be, the experience can be really inspiring and uplifting.

 

Last year, I spent some time in Venice, Italy, painting together with my artist friend, Eugen Chisnicean.  We did a lot of painting en plein-air in many spots in the city, and made a book VENICE AND VERONA with those paintings, including "Fish Market I."  I will also have the pleasure of exhibiting with him as invited guests of honor at the 12th Rencontres Artistiques du Val d'Anglin in Bélâbre, France later this year.  A 4-day workshop by each of us is also being planned during the exhibition.

 

 

"VENICE AND VERONA" available via my bookstore at Blurb

 

 

Fish Market, Venice, Italy I

 

Click for an enlarged view.

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 13 x 19 inches (33 x 48 cm)

Frame/Mat: No

Purchase: Sold

 

 

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Bretagne - Enchanted Land, French Landscape Painting


Concarneau, France (sketch)

 

I just completed a sketching tour of Brittany, France (Bretagne in French, Breizh in Breton).  Often dubbed as an enchanted land, I have found this corner of France indeed mystic in many ways.  Foggy coastlines, sprawling hills dotted with menhirs, rush forests, fast-moving clouds... all that makes up their landscape looked something uniquely different from the rest of France that I know.

 

With so many wonderful spots to paint everywhere in Brittany, I really felt like a kid in a candy store.  I am excited to be putting together paintings from this trip and plan to make a book later this year.  A publication date will be announced on my website when it's determined.

 

 

Concarneau, France (sketch)

 

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 14 x 10 inches (35 x 25 cm)

Frame/Mat: No

Purchase: Please send me an email for details.

 

 

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Published: My Interview in InSevilla


Sevilla, Spain IX

 

"En Andalucía me siento como en casa"- so I was quoted in the recent interview by a journalist from InSevilla, a digital newspaper of cultural events in Seville, Spain (April 29, 2013).  The article of my interview was just published in time for my watercolor workshop there.  Clearly the interviewer was someone knowledgeable of watercolor painting and there were very good questions.

 

The interview was made possible by my dear friend María José Barrera Garrido, an artist and a teacher who is well respected widely in Seville and its surrounding region.  She is having a watercolor painting exhibition in May at Plaza de Armas in the city of Seville.

 

Since the original article is in Spanish, here are their questions and my answers in English that appeared in Keiko Tanabe, acuarelas universales:

 

InSevilla: In this course (referring to my workshop) you deal with three principal objectives: atmosphere, light and shadow.  Are these keys to a good watercolor?

 

Keiko: When I'm inspired to paint something, what attracts me most is the quality of light and atmosphere in the subject.  I believe that fluidity of the medium of watercolor is perfect to capture that.  In my course, I teach some methods and techniques useful for this effect.  To me, a good watercolor painting is, first, one that shows the artist's full grasp of the medium, and second, one that resonates with the emotions the artist wanted to communicate.  A good painting doesn't have to be impressionistic.

InSevilla: Generally watercolor painting represents realistic landscapes.  Do you think it could be used as well to paint expressionist art, like dreams, nightmares, less figurative art?
 

Keiko: Of course.  In fact, I always think that a painting, in any medium, should speak something about the artist's emotional truth.  Whether it's a realistic landscape or a spiritual abstract painting, an artist should be aware of his inner voice and create a work that transcends a mere depiction of the subject.

InSevilla: Many people say light in Seville and Andalusia is different.  Do you agree with that?  What different features do you see?
 

Keiko: It's so strong and intense that the play of light and shadows often creates a scene that is full of passion and drama.  I only know Andalusia in the summertime so the light may be different in other seasons.  In San Diego, California where I live, I see some similarities in the weather, architecture and other cultural aspects, so I feel at home in Andalusia.

InSevilla: Do you think watercolor painting is valued as it deserves?  It seems it is like a second-level art compared to oil on canvas. 

 

Keiko: In general, that's how it's been perceived in many parts of the world, as I understand.  However, that traditional view may soon be regarded as outdated.  Today, largely thanks to the internet, the world is discovering more than ever many watercolor paintings of high quality.  I am hopeful that will change the general perception of the medium and raise the level of watercolor paintings as a whole.

InSevilla: Basically, what are the pro and cons of watercolor painting versus other techniques?


Keiko: Watercolor is relatively low maintenance because it is portable, odorless and dries fast.  For this reason, it may be best suited to do quick sketches with on location.  Technique-wise, its characteristic of being rather unforgiving may restrict the creativity of an artist.  It may result in having to do careful planning prior to painting.  I feel, however, watercolorists should try to enjoy the process without worrying too much about the result or even take advantage of its elusiveness.

InSevilla: Who are the best watercolor painters now and which artists do you like?  Any Spanish painters?


Keiko: There are many watercolor artists from the past and the present whose methods and styles have inspired and influenced me along the way.  I especially admire artists whose work evokes emotions as if they were soulful music or exciting drama: John Singer Sargent, Robert Wade, Mary Whyte and Alvaro Castagnet, to name a few.  As for Spanish artists, not really a watercolorist but Joaquín Sorolla's works attracted me very much for his figures draped in light.  In watercolor, Laurentino Martí and Manolo Jiménez are among my favorites.  I also want to add that I liked many works exhibited by Spanish artists in the Muestra internacional de acuarela Ciudad de Dos Hermanas (2012).

InSevilla: What is a big mistake that beginner watercolorists should avoid?


Keiko: It is often said that watercolor is the most difficult medium to handle, and that may be true to some degree.  First of all, I would like to tell beginners not to be discouraged by it because it is also very rewarding.  But before learning how to control the fluidity of the medium, I see some beginners needing to spend more time learning how to see things and how to draw.  In my course, I always stress the importance of developing a solid drawing skill and the ability to see perspective, contrast and spatial relationships.

InSevilla: Anything else you would like to say?


Keiko: I am looking forward to coming back to Sevilla soon and sharing the joy of watercolor painting with local artists.  Thank you for your time.

 

 

Sevilla, Spain IX

 

Click for an enlarged view.

Media: Original watercolor on paper

Image Size: 19 x 13 inches (48 x 33 cm)

Frame/Mat: No

Purchase: Sold

 

 

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Loving You the Way I Do by Ron Savage


My art on cover of Mr. Savage's new book

 

I am pleased that my watercolor "Torino, Italy II" was chosen as the cover art for Loving You the Way I Do, a new book by Ron Savage (ISBN: 978-0-9826364-3-5; Black Lawrence Press, New York).  The book is now available online.

 

"We don't love each other the way we'd like.  We love each other the way we do." - Ron Savage

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artmatch4U October Artist of the Month


Roma, Italia XLI

 

I am honored that Cindy Salaski, the founder of artmatch4U and a very versatile artist herself, has chosen my work to be featured on her comprehensive art website this month.  As October Artist of the Month, I have three of my paintings published.  Thank you, Cindy - it was such a pleasure working with you for this feature article.

 

 

Roma, Italia XLI

 

Media: Original watercolor on paper

Image Size: 55 x 74 cm

Frame/Mat: No

Purchase: Sold

 

 

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FASO Featured Artists


San Pedro, California IV

 

Artists about to launch an art career sometimes ask me what steps they should take to be a professional.  Almost always my answer is, create a professional art website first - before a blog, facebook page, twitter, etc.  That's what I did.  I chose FineArtStudioOnline (FASO) as my website host and I know I will never regret it.  If you are serious about art as a profession, the entire team of FASO is there for you in many facets on the business side of art.

 

FASO Featured Artists is their latest feature and I am truly honored to have my work featured there recently.  In it, Brian Sherwin, an art critic and a contributing writer for FASO, describes the quality of my watercolor paintings "pleasantly haunting" and says "Keiko's paintings can be interpreted as being caught somewhere between the 'physical' and the 'spiritual'...  The inspiration for these paintings may be a scene from present day but there is an underlining feeling that they are calling back to the past at the same time."

 

To see the entire description about my work in FASO Featured Artists, click here.

 

 

San Pedro, California IV

 

Click here for an enlarged view of this painting.

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 11.5 x 15.5 inches (29 x 39 cm)

Frame/Mat: No

Purchase: Sold

 

 

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SouthwestArt Magazine Watercolor Portfolio


Aix-en-Provence, France III

 

I am pleased to be included as one of the 10 watercolor artists to be featured in Southwest Art magazine (April, 2012).

 

In the latest issue, the magazine focuses on artists working in mediums other than oil, which is predominantly the choice of medium to be considered by shows and galleries across the U.S.  It is quite an honor for me to be among the 10 watercolor artists who "capture the world in a demanding medium where - unlike oil paint - second chances are rarely available," as noted by the magazine editor.

 

Nine other artists included in the watercolor portfolio are Stephen Quiller, Joseph Alleman, Don Weller, Dick Cole, Sueellen Ross, Tom Noble, Cathy Goodale, Carolyn Lord and Rance Jones.

 

The magazine is available in bookstores and online.

 

   

Southwest Art (April 2012) cover and inside (page 103)

 

 

Aix-en-Provence, France III

 

Click here for an enlarged view of this painting.

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 14.25 x 21.5 inches (36 x 54.5 cm)

 

 

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California Artist of the Year by Twin Cities TOSCA


Santa Barbara, California VII

 

Exploring TOSCA is a beautiful quarterly arts and culture magazine and the most comprehensive guide for art events in the Twin Cities region (Minneapolis-St Paul, Minnesota).

 

Last year they launched the American Artist Series where one artist was chosen by the editor-in-chief to represent each state.   In their current issue (winter), I am extremely honored that I am being featured with the title of "California Artist of the Year."

 

(click to open pdf file to see TOSCA winter issue)

 

Arts and culture thrive in this part of America's Heartland.  I didn't know this but many sources point out that the Twin Cities have more theatre companies per capita than any city outside of New York, for example.

 

Incidentally, I am going to St Paul later this year to teach a workshop at the Northstar Watercolor Society (October 15-19), so I am especially pleased with the feature in the magazine and looking forward to visiting there.   For more information on my workshops, please click here.

 

 

 

  

cover                                            ... and my feature in the 2012 winter issue

 

 

 

Santa Barbara, California VII

 

Click here for an enlarged view of this painting.

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 14.25 x 21.5 inches (36 x 54.5 cm)

Frame/Mat: No

Purchase: Please send me an email for details.

 

 

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Help Japan Challenge Gets 2011 Best Art Blog Project Award


Sakura III

 

I am delighted to be able to end the year with wonderful news.  It came from Katherine Tyrrell, an author of Making A Mark, one of the top art blogs in the UK.  She just announced that the Help Japan Challenge Auction that I hosted on Daily Paintworks back in March is the 2011 recipient of the Best Art Blog Project Virtual Challenge Cup Award.  The auction was created by David Marine of Daily Paintworks, and we had more than 400 paintings contributed by a large number of artists from around the world.

 

About this award, Katherine said, "To date, art to the value of $29, 218 has been raised as a result of the sales.  This is a model of contribution which we've seen many times before - however I don't think I've ever seen one before which was up and running and selling quite so fast and to such good effect.  In terms of level of involvement of art bloggers, capacity for adding value and overall impact to my mind there's no contest as to the worthy winner this year."

 

It is a great honor to be recognized by an artist blogger as highly respected and exceptionally knowledgeable as Katherine.  I would like to thank her for the award, and everyone who was involved in the project for their generous contribution and support for the cause.

 

 

Sakura III

 

Click here for an enlarged view of this painting.

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 8.25 x 11.5 inches (21 x 29 cm)

Frame/Mat: No

Purchase: Sold via auction

 

 

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Road to Santiago de Compostela


Le Puy-en-Velay, France I

 

Le Puy-en-Velay is situated in a setting that is uniquely beautiful and almost surreal.  The town is also known as one of the four official starting points in France of Christian pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela in northwestern Spain.  Although a journey on the Camino de Santiago Compostela can be made from anywhere in Europe, I have heard that the one starting here is more interesting for pilgrims as the path passes through villages with the best-preserved Romanesque churches.

 

I am pleased that this painting, depicting a panoramic view of Le Puy, is featured in the latest issue of DestinAsian (Dec/Jan 2012), the premier magazine of luxury travel and fine living in the Asia Pacific region.  My interview about a personal pilgrimage I made to Le Puy is also included.  Click here to read the article (in pdf file).

 

 

 "Life is one big road with lots of signs.  So when you riding through the ruts, don't complicate your mind.  Flee from hate, mischief and jealousy.  Don't bury your thoughts, put your vision to reality.  Wake Up and Live!" - Bob Marley, singer-songwriter

 

 

Le Puy-en-Velay, France I

 

Click here for an enlarged view of this painting.

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 15.5 x 11.5 inches (39 x 29 cm)

Frame/Mat: No

Purchase: Sold

 

 

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Granada Guitar, Spanish Landscape Painting


Granada Guitar, Spain II

 

Granada, city of enchantment and fantasy.  - Washington Irving

 

Many travelers come to Granada and leave with the same sentiment about this city in Southern Spain as described by Irving.  For a majority of them, the reason may be the majestic grandeur of the Alhambra.

 

For me, what particularly enthralled me there was an unforgettable afternoon of painting on a narrow alley.  Accompanied by the haunting sound of guitar melodies, I was totally in a Granada state of mind when I painted what looked like a guitar workshop in an old neighborhood (click here to see the painting "Granada Guitar")...

 

That was some years ago, but today I am very pleased to have the painting showcased on the cover of a short story "Reintroducing Arnold" by R.M. Usatinsky.  The setting of a story is Granada, and reading his story brought back memories of my visit to this magical place.

 

 

"Granada Guitar" is on the cover.  Read "Reintroducing Arnold" here.

 

 

Granada Guitar, Spain II

 

Click here for an enlarged view of this painting.

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 11.5 x 8.25 inches (29 x 21 cm)

Frame/Mat: No

Purchase: Sold

 

 

 

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International Watercolors.com


Another Day, Kyoto, Japan I

 

By kind invitation of Roy Fuller, the Founding Editor of International Watercolors.com, I am very happy that I am now included as one of the artists on his site (click here to see my entry).

 

International Watercolors.com is a website dedicated to watercolorists, both amateur and professional, and is designed to help them gain more exposure on the international art market.  I am honored that Roy and his panel of jurors took the time to review my work and kindly extended an invitation for me to participate in the site and join other respected watercolorists.

 

 

Another Day, Kyoto, Japan I

 

Click here for an enlarged view of this painting.

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 22 x 29 inches (55 x 74 cm)

Purchase: Temporarily unavailable

 

 

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Recent Media Coverage


Oceanside Harbor, San Diego I

 

I was mentioned or featured in several art publications recently.  Professional Artist magazine just published an article on how artists supported Japanese disaster relief efforts by raising money from their art ("Artists Raise $30,000 Online for Japanese Tsunami Survivors" by Byron Kerman, July/August 2011 issue).  I was interviewed for the article and my artwork is also featured in it.

 

I was delighted that San Diego Talent Magazine did a feature article on me last month.  I was also pleased to see my name come up in one of the recent posts, entitled "Your favourite watercolour painters," in Katherine Tyrrell's popular Making a Mark blog.

 

I'd like to take this opportunity to express my appreciation to those who chose to write about me or my work (My special thank-you to Byron and Katherine!).

 

 

Oceanside Harbor, San Diego, California I

 

Click here for an enlarged view of this painting.

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 14.25 x 21.5 inches (36 x 54.5 cm)
Frame/Mat: No

Purchase: Donated

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2011 Art Calendars from Daily Painters & Watercolor Artist


Pacific Coast Highway III

 

Family photos, artwork, a clock... We carefully choose what we hang on our walls because we want to make sure that's something we want to look at all the time.  What about wall calendars?

 

This holiday season, I'd like to suggest as a gift idea art calendars from Daily Painters and Watercolor Artist magazine.  Over a dozen different themed calendars are offered by Daily Painters and available via their Lulu.com store.  I have my painting included in Cityscape and Landscape themes.

 

For watercolor enthusiasts, editors of Watercolor Artist magazine have a beautiful watercolor art calendar made up of their 12 top choices available through Zazzle.com.  I am pleased that my Paris painting was chosen to be in it.

 

 

 

Pacific Coast Highway, California III

 

Click here for an enlarged view.

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 14.25 x 21.5 inches (36 x 54.5 cm)
Purchase: Sold

 

 

  Aux Tours de Notre Dame, Paris

 

Aux Tours de Notre Dame, Paris, France

 

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 14.25 x 21.5 inches (36 x 54.5 cm)
Purchase: Sold

 

Click here to see more paintings in my California Landscapes Collection.

Click here to see more paintings in my French Landscapes Collection.

 

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The Way of the World - My Feature Article in Watercolor Artist Magazine


Fushimi Shrine, Kyoto, Japan III

 

It all started with a surprise email from the editor of Watercolor Artist magazine back in March.  Soon she connected me with Ann Emmert Abbott, a Cincinnati-based freelance writer and former editor of the magazine.  After many emails, a telephone interview with me and an untold number of hours she must have spent going through my website and blog, Ann wrote "The Way of the World," a feature article about me and my work that has just been published in the December issue of Watercolor Artist.

Back in April and May, I also worked with my photographer, Michael Campos of Campos Photography (phone 760-504-0324) for photo shoots of a number of my new paintings in order to prepare images for the article.

I received my copy of the magazine a few days ago and am thrilled beyond words to see how everything came together.  Nine paintings of mine, including Fushimi Inari Shrine, Kyoto, Japan III and Pacific Coast Highway V are featured in the 8-page article.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Kelly Kane, editor of Watercolor Artist, Jessica Canterbury, managing editor of Watercolor Artist, Michael Campos, a fine art photographer and Ann E. Abbott, a wonderful writer with a big heart.

The magazine will hit newsstands in the U.S. on October 26.

   
Magazine cover (Dec. 2010)      Pacific Coast Highway V (featured inside)



Fushimi Inari Shrine, Kyoto, Japan III

 

Click here for an enlarged view.
Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 14.25 x 21.5 inches (36 x 54.5 cm)
Mat/Frame: No
Purchase: Please send me an email for more information.

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Finalist, Southwest Art 21 Over 31 Emerging Artists Competition


Toji Temple, Kyoto, Japan IV

 

Southwest Art magazine has just announced the winners and the Top 50 finalists of their second annual 21 Over 31 competition.

I am very pleased to have my work selected to be one of the 50 finalists out of nearly 3,000 entries (read more..).  It is a great honor to have my painting included in this group of outstanding works.

In addition to Toji Temple, Kyoto, Japan IV posted to the magazine's website, another one of my recent watercolors, Pacific Coast Highway III, is reproduced in the November issue of the magazine (page 107).

 

 


Toji Temple, Kyoto, Japan IV

 

Click here for an enlarged view.
Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 14.25 x 21.5 inches (36 x 54.5 cm)

Purchase: Private Collection

Click here to see more paintings of Japanese landscapes and cityscapes.

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Preview: Feature Article in Watercolor Artist, December 2010


Aux Tours de Notre Dame, Paris, France

 

I am very pleased to announce that there will be a feature article about me and my work in the December issue of the Watercolor Artist magazine.  The article is based on my interview and will include several new images of my paintings, including this one.

 

The magazine is scheduled to be on the newsstands in the U.S. on October 26.

Meanwhile, please enjoy my gallery, an online-exclusive album of my paintings on the Watercolor Artist magazine website.

 


Aux Tours de Notre Dame, Paris, France

 

Click here for an enlarged view.
Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 14.25 x 21.5 inches (36 x 54.5 cm)
Mat/Frame: No
Purchase: Sold

Click here to see more paintings of French landscapes and cityscapes.

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Splash 11: New Directions, The Best of Watercolor


Firenze, Italy VIII

 

I got my copy of Splash 11 today!  It is such an honor to have a painting included in this edition (Firenze, Italy VIII).

The Splash series has been very popular and I can see why.  It is a beautiful hard-cover book and each painting included is a reproduction from a very high-quality photo.

Each edition showcases best works of contemporary watermedia artists that were carefully selected for a specific theme.  Splash 11 focuses on "new directions."  As I go through page after page, I am awe-struck with spectacular creations of artists who work in the medium we all love.  It is also interesting to read how these artists interpret the theme and discuss their painting method.  If you love watercolor/watermedia, I recommend without hesitation you get your copy.


Firenze, Italy VIII

 

Click here for an enlarged view.
Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 21 x 14 inches
Mat/Frame: No
Purchase: Sold

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Artist Daily: Proven Steps of Watercolor Mastery


Procida, Italy IV

 

Courtney Jordan, editor of Artist Daily (on June 5 , 2010), offers a top-five list she compiled to help those striving to improve their skills for the mastery of the medium of watercolor.

1. Load your brush
2. Go abstract
3. Don't forget to sketch
4. Find the light
5. Consider a limited palette

These are really excellent pieces of advice, coming from someone who is familiar with ins and outs of many techniques and approaches employed by contemporary watermedia artists.

I am happy to see my painting featured in this article (Click to read more).

Read other blog posts about my work that appeared in American Artist/Artist Daily.



Procida, Italy IV

 

Click here for an enlarged view.
Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 14 x 21 inches
Purchase: Sold

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San Diego 100 (#86) - San Marcos, California Landscape Painting

 

San Marcos (SD100-86)

 

 

The weather in San Diego is pleasant almost all year round, so any day is a good biking day.  Although life in Southern California is still highly car-dependent, the extensive bike route system in San Diego helps many who want to go to work by bike or who want to ride for pure enjoyment and a little adventure.

I see biking gaining popularity year after year as there seem to be more and more bikers riding, especially on weekend mornings.  One Saturday, I spotted a group of bike enthusiasts in colorful jerseys in the San Elijo Hills neighborhood of San Marcos (North County San Diego).  With several bike trails criss-crossing in this area, weekend bikers are pretty much part of the local landscape.


I am happy to announce that yesterday my San Diego 100 Project was featured on Designer Janelle Steinberg's blog (Maison Classique).  Please click on the link to read more.


San Diego 100 (#86) - San Marcos

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 8.25 x 11.5 in. (on 9 x 12 in. paper)
Mat/Frame: No
Purchase: Sold

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Marisqueira, Portugal I, Portuguese Landscape Painting


Marisqueira, Portugal I

 

You might remember this painting from my previous post.  I was glad that this piece was also reviewed by John A. Parks in the summer issue (2009) of American Artist/Watercolor Magazine (you can read an online version of the article here).

John, an established artist himself (see his website), often writes for American Artist and its sister publications.  His writings are commended highly and I always enjoy his articles which are insightful, accurate and thought-provoking.  So you can imagine how truly honored I was that he would do an article about my work.

He wrote, "Her travels have (also) allowed her to make paintings that show great warmth and interest for other cultures.  In Marisqueira, Portugal, for instance, she presents an intimate glimpse of two ordinary women talking casually on the sidewalk in the early morning.  And in Market Day, Venice, Italy II, a man pushing a cart and various passersby are integrated seamlessly into the light and air of the scene, giving the viewer the sense that he or she is participating in the life and work of the place."


Marisqueira, Portugal I

Click here for an enlarged view of this painting.

 

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 11.5 x 8.25 in. (on 12 x 9 in. paper)
Mat/Frame: Yes/No
Mat Size: 18 x 14 in. (off-white)
Purchase: Private Collection

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Market Day, Venice, Italy II, Italian Landscape Painting


Market Day, Venice, Italy II

 

Following the theme of my daily painting from yesterday, I am showing another piece that depicts a market scene.  What I aimed at in this particular piece was to see if I could tell a story without saying too much.  I wanted to create a somewhat mysterious picture with suggestions of elements strewn around.

Some of the elements needed for this story were: cooler and moist air giving way to a hot summer day; a feel of a morning market in an outdoor setting with merchants busily moving about; local people starting their daily routine in a residential neighborhood in Venice.  I also challenged myself to see if a maximum effect could be achieved by using a limited palette and a wider range of tonal values.

This is one of my paintings that are featured in the current American Artist/Watercolor magazine (summer, 2009).  Click on this link to read an online version of the article.


Market Day, Venice, Italy II

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 8.25 x 11.5 in. (on 9 x 12 in. paper)
Purchase: Private Collection

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American Artist Blog Update

 

Watercolor (American Artist) cover (Summer 2009)

 

 

I am so thrilled that a10-page article about my work appeared in the summer issue of Watercolor Magazine.  Here's a link to read the online version of a featured article about Keiko Tanabe in American Artist Watercolor magazine, written by John A. Parks.

Please also visit American Artist Blog to view additional artwork of mine.

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Featured Article in Watercolor (American Artist) Summer 2009


Watercolor (summer 2009)

 

I am happy to announce that one of the featured articles in the upcoming issue (summer 2009) of Watercolor magazine is about me and my art.  The magazine will be available soon at US bookstores.

The whole thing started at the beginning of this year with the kind introduction of my works by Lori Woodward Simons to the editors of the magazine, a sister publication of American Artist.

I am extremely delighted that 16 of my watercolor paintings will appear in the 10-page article (printed version) including a step-by-step demo piece "Little Italy Sunset VI."

Read online version with selected paintings: Minimal Means, Maximum Impact  written by John A. Parks.



  Little Italy Sunset VI


Little Italy Sunset VI

Click here for a larger image of "Little Italy Sunset VI."

Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 14.5 x 22 in.
How to Purchase: Please send me an email.

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Painting Journey Home with Passionate Brushstrokes


Journey Home II
My Journey Home series is a collection of streetscapes of my hometown, Kyoto, Japan.  Kyoto is a popular international tourist destination, but this series is not about that aspect of this ancient city.  It is about people who live there and how their daily life goes.

When I painted Journey Home I in 2005, I did not intend to make it a series.  This painting is now included in the newly-published art book Splash 10: Passionate Brushstrokes (North Light Books).  I wrote in the caption in it, "Living thousands of miles away from home, I sometimes find myself consumed by an overwhelming yearning to go back.  I am fortunate to know painting is one way to cope with my strong emotions that arise at a time like this."

Three years later, I am currently working on Journey Home X (in progress).  I hope to continue this series until I feel I’ve done enough.  Will I ever feel that way?  I don’t know.

-- Journey Home paintings are included in my Japanese Landscapes Collection.
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Journey Home I


Journey Home I

 

Every winter I return to Kyoto, Japan, my hometown, to visit my family.  Journey Home I was created after such a trip a few years ago.  It captures a typical early evening scene on a backstreet in this ancient city where people are shopping for groceries at neighborhood stores.  Mundane, the sight evoked a sense of déjà vu in me.  It was the return of distant memory long forgotten of my childhood in Japan and I had to paint it.

 

This painting received several awards and is included in the recently-published Splash 10: Passionate Brushstrokes (North Light Books), a perennial art book filled with beautiful, inspirational watercolor paintings selected from hundreds of submissions from all over the world.

- View the above and more paintings in my Japanese Landscape Collection.

 


Journey Home I

 

Media: original watercolor on paper

Image Size: 14 x 21 inches

Purchase: Sold

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