Saturday, November 16, 2013

New Works From The Studio

  Johnny has been putting in some long hours at the studio these past couple of months. I'm always happy/excited to see a new series of large paintings coming into the gallery. 
 I've decided that it might be nice to have paintings here, on the gallery blog, as well as our regular website. I can have the images a bit larger here, so that's a plus. Also, it gives us an opportunity to say a few words about the paintings, if we want. 

Gallery Apodaca

  One of the "new" paintings in the gallery is actually an older painting. "Umbria" has come back to us, and we are thrilled to be showing it again. This painting was done in 2011, after our first trip to Panicale. It was one of several larger pieces that were all done in a similar palette:

48X48  O/C

  The paintings, below, are all new, still in the studio. We hope to have them in the gallery for Thanksgiving weekend. This will depend on weather and dry time. We love to see the new works on the walls, so fingers crossed, they will be here soon.

48X36  O/C   

  Johnny has been working on some larger canvases, which is challenging for him. This is a good thing.
  When he is challenged, well, that's when the magic can happen...

60X60  O/C

48X60  O/C

48X36  O/C

   These next two came along shortly after the paintings above. I am really liking what has been happening in Johnny's studio lately, I must say. 
  I think this first piece is my new favorite. I love the drama of it.
  "Piegaro" is a town near Panicale. It has a very mysterious feel...

60X72  O/C

  Johnny was imagining the amazing yellow fields near San Savino, in Umbria, when he finished the painting, below. We drive by this area all the time while we are in Panicale, our home away from home in Umbria...
  The intense color of the "rape" fields is beyond belief. Johnny often thinks of the Umbrian, as well as the local landscape when he is creating these larger abstracts, and I can understand why. It's like he is breaking it down to the essence of the place.

50X45  O/C

  For more information on these, and other work by Johnny Apodaca, please contact Gallery Apodaca.


Sunday, November 3, 2013

And Back In the Studio...

  Janelle writing here today...

  I just love poking around in Johnny's studio space....when he lets me in! 
  Seriously, he does have me come over most evenings to see what he has been working on. We'll pour a glass of wine, and just do a walk through. Sometimes there will only be the start of something new, other evenings he'll have something finished that he wants to talk about. I always enjoy any time I spend in the studio, honestly. I did a post here last fall, when Johnny had just done a major dressing up of the place.

  This morning, I asked if I could take more pictures, since the light was nice and I had some time before coming into the gallery to work. I was happy to see that there was some "action" going on today....

I love these paint sample thingys Johnny puts up.

One of the ever changing shelf collections....
the tri-fold is from a Helen Frankenthaler exhibit.

  Johnny loves his paint brushes, even the "chip" brushes he uses most of the time. I just love the look of them when they are all in a pile. Texture and color...I like!

Views of brushes piled up in old paint boxes...

After they have done the job, he still hangs on to them,
for use in various and sometimes odd installations...

  The jars of paint are always nice to see, especially when they so obviously being put to work.

Like gelato, but not.

Extreme colors at their best.

  I guess my favorite thing is the working palette. I just like all the messiness of it, of course. The mixing, the drips, all the oozy stuff going on. Then, in a few days, he'll clean the whole thing up and start all over. 
  It's magical.....for me, anyway.

Yeah, and you should see his work clothes.


  The work surface mesmerizes me, I swear. It's so hard to imagine what the final result will be, and it's always a surprise. I look forward to seeing what Johnny creates with the tools, brushes and paint I saw here in the studio this morning.....I'll let you know, ok?



Tuesday, September 24, 2013


  This trip to Venice is much more about seeing art than making art.
  Though both are equally important to the artist.
  The artist has to be a sponge, and absorb intuitively...everything around him.

  The Venice Biennale always has a treasure trove of inspiration. But so does hearing the bells in the Campo, or watching children play with their grandparents.
  All the unexpected moments that one sees, hears and feels. All these things are distilled in the studio back home. 
  Hopefully to add a layered interest...and some extra meaning.

  At the end of a long day of absorption, it is always a treat to sit and watch the late afternoon activity in the "campo", or main square. A good place to contemplate, and work on my journal.

  A glass of wine is always a good idea, too.

The red paper is classically Venetian

  The boat ride to the island of Torcello is beautiful and very relaxing. The day we visit is a perfect one.
  It's nice to find a quiet spot to think and paint.


I love the traveling studio in a cigar box. It's perfect.

Gouache work with a postcard.

A beautiful location to work from.

I needed some shade. This was a warm day....

Work in progress.

This moment is captured. 

  One thing that painting "plein air" in California has taught me, is that the act of painting the moment...whether it is 30 minutes, an hour or several's all about capturing that particular time of the day. That particular light. That particular place.
  And it's good . And it's worthy.
  It's the magic treasure that painting on the Pacific coast has taught me....

Basic tools.

My best tool.

The traveling studio.

Finished...for this moment.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Just Looking Back

  Janelle here writing today. And posting photos, which is always the fun part for me.

  We are both missing our other piece of heaven, Panicale. It's only been two months since we were last there, but still.....we think about it every day. I really enjoy looking through the thousands of pictures we take while there, and I've been doing just that for the last day or two. 

  We are getting ready to show this year's paintings in late August, and now seems like a great time to take a little look back. No videos this time, just some shots of Johnny hard at work, and maybe a couple of him not so hard at work.....

Working on a gouache while straddling the wall just
outside of Panicale. A view Johnny loves.

  One day we headed over to Valiano, which is about thirty minutes away. I was happy, because there is this great little restaurant there, and I was looking forward to trying it for lunch. Anyway, Johnny set up his stuff and started working, and I took a nice long hike into town to make a reservation for our lunch date. Before heading off, I took a shot of him as he started working.

Typical working mode for Johnny. Love his "office".
 I was heading up the road, to go to the little town up that hill in the distance.

  As I started walking, just enjoying all the sights and sounds of the country side, this huge tractor came slowly down the road. 
  Here's the thing, we always try to find a spot for Johnny to set up that is out of the way of traffic, etc. But it seems that every once in a while he just can't help but be in the fray....I was so glad this rig was going slow, so I could get a good photo of it as it slowly headed right for Johnny.

You can almost see Johnny on the left of the road, across from the red car.
He only needed to scoot out of the way a little, but the dust was everywhere.
Oh, the perils of the artist's job!

  The lunch was great, by the way, and I will do a post about it on my blog, Live Pronto, soon.


  I'm excited about the new work Johnny did from this trip. We are still in the process of having things framed, so we are slowly getting it all together.
  I always enjoy hanging out while  Johnny is working. I'll either bring something to read, or take a long walk. The area is so lovely, I am always happy to head out and explore. Then I get to return and see whats been happening while I was away....

A favorite spot to paint, on the way to San Feliciano, very near Lago Trasimeno.
You can see a glimpse of the lake in the distance.

Another gouache, this one featuring an old farmhouse in the yellow flowering fields.

Johnny carrying his folding chair and messenger bag with all the painting stuff.
Just looking for the right place to set up.

Oil on canvas...this became a perfect gift we left for some wonderful pals.
Near Varacca.

  Johnny is going to kill me for all these photos, I think. But the thing is, I enjoy watching him figuring out where and what to paint. 
  Geez, when I look around, every view seems great, but I have learned that it's not as easy as that, of course. It often takes several stops along a drive, or on a hike, to find a good spot to work from. He'll often want a place that he can do several paintings from.

Looking for somewhere to set up, just outside of Panicale, which is in the distance.
We were most likely walking on this day.

Guess he thought this was a good place to work. May have been
before we got the folding chair...

Just checking out the scene. We were in Binami, I think...a nearby town.

Plenty of inspiration to be found on our morning walks.

A rainy day, so we are hanging out at Bar Gallo.
Johnny is using a paper placemat to paint the view on. Whatever works.

  These trips are fun on top of more fun, for me. For Johnny, it's a different story. His is a working vacation, to be sure. There is always that little cloud of pressure hanging over his beret...Must Get Painting....

  Well, maybe not always...

What's that about "all work and no play"?
On the boat to Isola Maggiore.

Out of focus, and really happy.

And then there's that "glass of wine at sunset" thing.
Tough job, dude.

  Saying goodbye to Panicale is always hard, but we have a fantastic place to return home to here, also.
  Until next Spring, we can always look back at our photos, pinch ourselves over our good luck, and keep on working hard to make it all happen.

Johnny saying "arrivederci" to Panicale on our last evening there.
 Just one more glass of wine, Aldo, per favore......