Sunday, December 4, 2016

SYSG update

Sunday 12/4/16.

Good morning! If you have been watching the Shi Yazhi Sage Gallery website over the last few months you should have seen some changes.

When starting this gallery, I wanted it to help those budding artist who struggle with representation and exposure of their work. I didn't realize that it would take so long to actually acquire artist in the gallery. This morning we are pleased with our two added artists; Corey Yazzie and Margaret Gallegos. Moreover, I am pleased that they trust in SYSG to represent them.

Corey Yazzie

Corey's work caught my eye as I was trolling through FB. I appreciate the boldness in his work. New artists tend to shy away from showing their work because they lack the confidence or become afraid of the critique. While Corey is quite an accomplished artist (check out his pencil work and the technique he uses) he demonstrates practical application of media in the work SYSG is showing. His use of colors makes his work appealing to me because there is a curious balance to the entire work. I stress to new artist that use of space is essential, whether it is left blank or completely filled in; the entire canvas, paper, etc, should be used. There should be process of the space and presentation of piece.

One can find a 'glowing' effect in Corey's work that will present nicely in darkened room such as a dinning room, a bar, or private hallway. This work is to be shown in a public location where it will be greatly admired. Corey presents a work that I could not do and that is what is admirable for many artists.

Margaret Zamora Gallegos

I met Margaret also while trolling through FB and liked a piece shown by her daughter, whom I know from my day job at The Specialty Shop. Laura (the daughter) presented a unique idea to me about reviewing Margaret's work and perhaps helping her with presentation. I found Margaret's piece "The Shout" thorough and stunning. 

I decided to follow up and see if I can help her. More of her work proved to be what I expected of an artist in this caliber. Margaret is a new artist (she's only been at work for less than 5 years) and her story of how she became the artist is also stunning. Gert and I decided to represent her in the gallery. 

Margaret's work demonstrates a delicate balance of the entire work to me. "The Shout" in particular illustrates exactly what I mention about use of space (in Corey's comments above) and the use of color. As one considers "The Shout" and realizes that this work is not from a trained or schooled artist, the appeal greatly increases. Hang this piece in your dinning area where you can see it and remember its purpose because it is a family theme.

I am so glad to add these two artists to our gallery. 


So is one work better than the other? That can be a question regarding artwork, but it really is an inappropriate and unqualified question. The beauty is found in the beholder, the viewer of the work that is. It is a personal preference; some art appreciators are drawn by the story of the piece or the artist while others are attracted by the visual concept. 

SYSG mission statement is to introduce new artists. We have two great and awesome artists on our gallery that we are so pleased to introduce to you. Enjoy! Buy their work now because they are going to go beyond SYSG. 

In the meantime, Gert and I are still at work painting! We have a show in Phoenix next weekend at the Pueblo Grand Museum. We will have Margaret's work on hand in case you wish to make a purchase on it. 

Ms. Margaret Gallegos painting experience is greater than 5 years, but new to the market. Nevertheless, her work is very impressive. 

Monday, September 12, 2016

Update 09/12/16

Hey there!

Wow! It's been a crazy, whirlwind of events for Gert and I through the month of August.

We worked very hard at getting paintings ready for the SWAIA Indian Market in Santa Fe. We both work in retail in Albuquerque and have the three kiddos to take care of too. It was a 'go to work', 'take care of the kids', and 'paint til midnight' daily process that wears you down. I donated a painting to the SWAIA auction a few weeks before the show. That was a great painting! I designed it specifically for the auction and was very pleased with giving it for a good cause.

Two days before the market we submitted our entries for judging and then enjoyed ourselves with a late lunch at the famous Tomasita's Restaurant in Santa Fe. On Friday evening we came back to Santa Fe for preview night to learn that one of my paintings had taken 1st Place and Best in Division! It was exciting because we learned about it just before opening night started. Even more surprising we learned it was not the painting we assumed the prize winner. Nevertheless it was great.

The next day we arrived at 5:30 am for setting up. We spent the day meeting everyone and enjoying such great conversations. We did sell the prize winner that day. Thank you for your purchases. Sunday also proved to be just as fun in meeting everyone again. Of course our family stopped by to see and support us. Thank you for stopping by.

We closed down on Sunday and proceed back to Tohajiilee, after we treated ourselves to dinner at Buffalo Wild Wings. We picked up the kids to get ready for the regular week of school and work.

The very next day we traveled to Santo Domingo Pueblo, New Mexico to secure a booth at their Arts & Crafts Market over Labor Day weekend. Then we spent the next two weeks painting, school, and work getting ready for that show. We attended the three day show and again met new and old friends.

Immediately after the Santo Domingo show we traveled to Window Rock, Arizona to enter paintings in the Navajo Nation Fair, Nizhoni Arts Market. Coincidentally, it was my birthday as well. We met my parents who treated us out to some steamed corn mutton stew with fry bread and gave me a birthday cake. We had to return last Sunday to pick up our paintings.

It was quite exhausting! After Window Rock we decided that we should rest and we have. We pretty much took a week off to do just that. We thank you for your patience if you have been following the web page, our FB page, or waiting a reply to an email.

It has been a fun time, even though it tired us out.  I hope to be posting more soon. It turns out that I'm not very good at blogging - ha ha! But must keep at it.


Thursday, June 9, 2016

Graduation 2016


For all of those who don't yet know, I will be graduating this Saturday, June 11, 2016 from the University of Phoenix with a Bachelor's Degree in Business; specifically Small Business Administration and Entrepreneurship. I will be graduating with Honors and I also have been selected as the 2015-2016 Honored Student. I will be giving one of the commencement speeches at the commencement ceremony. It is a great milestone for my family and we are all happy. After graduation we plan on having a reception in Albuquerque and we could use any help in funding it. any dollar amount is greatly appreciated. You can make a contribution here. Every little bit helps!

Completing this degree is not only an individual accomplishment, but something I share with my wife, Gert. She has supported me entirely. We have great plans to use this degree for our future and not only for us but for our community.

Thank you for sharing and following.



It has been my goal to update this blog as I continue in business and painting. However, as life happens, there are many things happening through out the day. Then the days turn into weeks and the the weeks into months. It is quite impressive how fast times rolls along.

Gert and I have four children; Sage, Eric, Cody and Darren. As some of you know, Sage passed in 2007. It has been a major artifact in our lives. Eric lives near us with his daughter, Cody lives in Albuquerque, and Darren lives in Kansas with his small family. Today, Gert and I have foster children that take up the large part of our day. It is something to start over again with small children, but we believe these children were given to us for a reason - so we accepted them. They are Nina (11), Tomar (8) and David (6). They are beautiful kids but they are kids. They have been living with us for about 4 years.

Gert and I celebrated our 25th anniversary this past Valentines Day. It is quite and accomplishment and sometimes, I find it hard to believe we made it that far.

So as a family we are constantly busy supporting each other. Thus, my time is limited in reaching this blog. But that is life! The life of an artist!

Since our last show, the Red Rocks Arts and Crafts show in Jemez Pueblo, I developed intense sciatica. I have a history of it, but this last episode has been the worst pain I felt from it. It literally deliberated me from really doing anything and it was very frustrating. To make matter worse, I also kinked my neck when sleeping (because I couldn't lay normally) and pinched a nerve in my neck. I was in a crazy physical state these last two days. Today I am coming out of it with the help of some Valium and Tramadol - I feel that I can function again - hooray!

I am finally painting again today. Since I sold all my Winter's Healing paintings, I need to build and inventory for our next showing.

Well, today's blog post is about life, the life as an artist. It is just like every family, we make it work and we work at it. Thank you for reading.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Shi Yazi Sage Gallery

Greetings everyone! I have been spending much time on the backbone of the Shi Yazhi Sage Gallery project; business plan, inventory, accounting, etc. My painting has come to a halt. No fear though, I plan to start a painting today! I was thinking about going back to recreate an old favorite entitled "Morning Blessings'.  Of  course the colors and arrangement will be completely different but the concept the same.

For those new followers, my painting career began with the drawing of this face. Although it has evolved over 30 years, the face is still recognizable. If you are able to find the 2000 Gallup Inter-tribal Ceremonial Poster, you will find my painting with this face. There have been many questions about the face; is it a mask? is it part of the Japanese? etc. The face I created way back in 1990 is one of two characteristics, spiritual and physical. The spiritual is that the image represents the human being and the physical represents the Native American. These paintings help us teach many things about our culture.

I have not completed one of these paintings in such a long time, I am excited to work on it. I will keep you informed of its progress.

Shi Yazhi Sage Gallery has new merchandise. Our jewelry line is growing and seems to be getting the most views. Our hand bags are selling well too. Click on our link at the beginning of this paragraph to see the full website. Here is a glimpse of the hand bags.

I hope to hear from you soon. 


Monday, March 14, 2016

What's going on?

What is going on?

The 2016 art market seems to be lagging. Sales tend to be down, it is not something that only I noticed but it is the main conversation among the vendors. This downward sales trend seems to affect all segments of the Native American Arts market; jewelry, paintings, sculptures, etc. So what is going on?

I theorize that this sales trend is common during the election years. in 2012, and 2008 there was the trend. During this unsettling and disturbing time, we get to observe presidential candidates hack at each other and vie for campaign dollars. Dollars that could be used in the purchase of art. Just consider how much a campaign costs. Consider Ted Cruz's campaign this year, it is at 54.8 million, with 99% of that from individual contributions. Of that 54.3 million, 42% are from small individual contributions (, 2016). This is only one candidate!

Another point is the idea that people tend to hold on to cash until the fate of the presidency is decided. This seems to hold true, with much exception to the 2008 financial crisis.

Of course there is the fact that the Fed raised interest rates in December 2015 for the first time in nearly 10 years. We surely must understand that this affects our market, because that act changes our target market's financial outlook.

As working artisans, what do we do? Well, I find that we tend to barter with each other. I think that it is great we see the value in each other's work. Great job! I believe that most of us understand this and has already planned to weather the storm. The economic outlook is good for Art in 2016 up through 2020. Artisans, look at different avenues to selling art. For the buyers, you may find quality art at lower prices. The opportunity is still there.

 Hang in there! I am interested in what you think though..


references: (2016). Sen. Ted Cruz. Retrieved from

It's Been A While....

Its been such a while since I have made any posts on this blog. I apologize.

Well, we have been busy. We traveled to Phoenix twice, once in December 2015 for the Pueblo Grande Show and just a few weeks ago for the Heard Show. We are new to the market there in Phoenix, so this was really and introductory show for us. We had sales, but not the larger number sales we get in our regular market areas. I did mange to sale some paintings at wholesale which I understand are being merchandised in Texas, and they are selling! That is a good. I am considering concentrating sales and promotion though major galleries in the high art market areas of Santa Fe, Scottsdale, and San Francisco. I will just play things out and see what develops.

On the personal side, I also completed my degree in Business in December, and managed to be selected as the 2015-2016 Honored Student. Commence will be in June in Albuquerque, we are looking forward to that.

Our next show is most likely going to be the Pueblo of Jemez Red Rocks Arts and Crafts during Memorial Day weekend.

Below are two of my most recent paintings. I really enjoyed working on these projects. Both are acrylic on canvas with use of metallic acrylic paints. The Koshari clown image is entitled "What's Next?". To those who are familiar with the clown culture, this clown is in between behaviors and simply observing and putting up a show. His empty hands are the message of this thought.  This image came out quite striking because there is a unique effect. The face of the clown appears almost skeletal or like a skull from a distance, yet as you near the painting, you can actually see a face of a man. The falling leaves are painted with bronze, gold and metallic yellow. I wanted this image to appear real, but when closely observed, realize it is a painting. I used a very loose style to get there.

Winter's Healing on a grand scale. This painting is 4' X 5'. I had been doing the WH series on 18" X 22" canvases before this one. I greatly underestimated the time and use of paint to do this. It's been a while since I completed one this size. I was frustrated several times because I had proportions incorrect and the lighting in my house was not adequate at night to show the entire canvas. Therefore, I had to paint during the day most of the time. There is a lot of movement achieved in this painting. I wanted to ensure I capture what the WH series is about like I normally do. I feel I got it!

I hope to see you on here too.. have a great day!