Friday, November 7, 2008

Dia de los Muertos 2008

I love the idea of Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead). It is intended to be a Celebration of Life - a Day of Rebembrance. I grew up in Tucson, Arizona, where there was an infusion of Mexican culture and traditions, but it wasn't until I moved to Denver and became a member of CHAC that I became a fan of Dia de los Muertos. Now I have a huge collection of Day of the Dead art. The art usually depicts the dead as skeletons who have returned for the day to celebrate and participate in activities that they enjoyed when they were alive. It is meant to be happy, not grim in any way. I would think that it helps talk to children about death and make it less scary for them.

Here are some pieces I made for the show this year.

"Kitchen Helpers" - cut sponge in shadow box.

Sandblasted stones - I sold about 30 various stones and glass with smiling skull images on them.

Skullking - blasted antique mirror.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Tri-color silkscreen

I added two more colors to the robot silkscreen to make it more interesting. The lightning bolt from the gun and electricity coming from the rod on the robot's head is the first layer. The background to the robot is the second layer. and the black outline is the third.

I learned a lot doing this myself and without a hinge screening setup. Lesson learned: don't try to line them up freehand. But I had fun doing these. I made about 50 prints on shirts and about 10 prints on paper and canvas.

People loved the robot on the button up shirts. Not surprising when you see the saturated t-shirt market. I like what I saw Eighty Eight brand doing with the striped button-up long-sleeves. I'm already thinking about future silkscreen patterns that would work well on blazers and classy long-sleeves.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Rockets and Robot cutouts

I needed some real fun in my life this month (September), so I created some wood cutouts to go around my rocket and robot paintings. We'll see how popular they are at the October show, but they were real fun to make. I wanted to add some interest to the presentation at CHAC Norte. There is so much wall space that there needed to be some cohesiveness to the wall. I would love to make them more kinetic - like turning a crank would more the robot's arm. I might not have that done for this show, but will be in the works for future shows.

I also wanted to do these, because they were easier to do than stone sculptures. I wanted to mix in the "beginnings" of the stone work I've been doing, but I really only have three pieces finished. That doesn't really look that impressive in a show. I'm glad I didn't add them, because I just learned that there is going to be another stone artist showing this month at CHAC. Her work is MUCH more advanced than mine. Her level of detail and smooth finish is where I hope to be in a year or so. I know I have the tools for it but the time isn't so readily available these days. And you really can't rush stone.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Art du jour 9-9-08

I have been looking for some 4"x4" frames for over a year to put these etched mirrors in. I finally found some and they work well with the silver of the mirror. I saved the images to blast in stone later on, but I thought these would make an interesting display. I want to experiment with blasting the front and the back of mirrors to create a layered effect.
(These sold in the October show.)

October 2008 show at CHAC Norte

I will be showing again next month in CHAC’s North gallery, CHAC Norte, located at 774 Santa Fe Drive. I plan on showing sandblasted stone furniture and sculpture. I rented a large space, so we'll see how much I can get ready for this show.

I have outdoor tables ready to blast now. I'm using botanicals and outdoor themes, including butterflies and flowers. I'm also thinking about layered glass table top blasting. I've experimented with glass plates, but it might be a challenge to go to the bigger size. Should be fun to try and beautiful if they turn out.

Sandblasted Marble spheres

These have been popular. I’ve found some solid marble spheres in several places, including a couple 2 inch ones on my recent Tucson trip. I have sold a few already.

Sponsors make an art show great

The show opening went really well. The First Friday crowd was smaller than usual due to cloudy weather, but there were still about a thousand people through the gallery over the weekend. We had some great sponsors. Julia Blackbird’s Restaurant provided appetizers on Thursday night for our preview party. Mountain Man Fruit and Nut Company donated 600 pieces of wrapped candy. It was the perfect sanitary thing to have available for our guests and surprisingly no mess. I’m not sure why people will throw a wrapper away, but they leave cups and plates all over a gallery, including on top of art sitting on tables. We also had Country Fair Nursery donate half a dozen potted Fall containers to display around the gallery. We got many complements on the above donations. So, many, many thanks to our sponsors and friends who helped out with this show.


I needed some way of producing the same image over and over for this idea I had for the robots, so I got out the silkscreen kit I had and made a couple in only a few hours. I had forgotten how easy it was when you don’t have to stretch your own silkscreen. I did a robot and a spaceship that I used in several pieces for my September show. Just like any medium, I learn with every new piece the things NOT to do the next time.

The kit came with drawing fluid and masking fluid, so one of the easiest ways to make a silkscreen is actually drawing on the silkscreen what you want to be inked on the surface of your art form. You can even correct any “over-spill” of this preliminary masking liquid after it is washed off. So cool! These two are just outline silk-screens, but after this show, I want to make some multi-colored prints using 3 or 4 silk-screens.

Rainbow Invasion, Silkscreen on paper, 14x24, 2008.

Zap I, II, III, silkscreen on crackled acrylic canvas. 5x7, 2008.

New Robots

Here are some images of the new robots. They are going to be in the September show. I don’t have anywhere near the number of pieces like I’ve had in previous shows. Well, unless you count every card and small stone a separate piece – then I probably have more pieces in a show than ever before.

Robot Toy, 30x30 Acrylic on canvas. Comes with toy.

Oblivious of the Destruction, 18x48 Acrylic on canvas.

Detail from Oblivious of the Destruction.

September 2008 Show flyer with times

This is our show flyer for the September 2008 show. I’m showing with 5 other artists. We named the show Nuestro OtoƱo, meaning Our Autumn. I like the graphic and the look of the card, but I think that there is a major advantage to putting samples of each artist’s work on the card. People see something that looks like what they would want to own and they’re motivated to come take a closer look. A show’s works don’t have to look the same or match a color scheme for people to get a sense of what will be showing. I think we didn’t do that this time because I didn’t want to spend the time in Photoshop editing six different images like I’ve done in previous shows. Lesson learned.

I plan on showing a dozen rocket and robot paintings, silk-screens, and illustrations. I’m also setting up a table for my sandblasted stones and glassware. I’m also going to try selling some greeting cards. The items on the tables are low price-point pieces that get people to stop and look.

If you’re in Denver during the month of September, stop by the CHAC gallery at 8th and Santa Fe Drive to check out my new pieces.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Block Printing

I bought myself a small present awhile back. A Blick Econo Etch Model II printing press. I’m starting small, but I’ve made some interesting linoleum cuts this year. I need to make the time to create some more. I’ve sold about 2 dozen prints so far, so the press has paid for itself already. I'm saving up for a press like Picasso had. I saw it in his home (now museum) in Paris. It was beautifully ornate and looked to be about 24 inches wide with a 6 foot table. The closest I can find like it for sale these days is this: I'll have to keep looking for a better example.

Here are some of my favorite blocks that I’ve done this last year.

The New Couple. 5x7, 2007

Contemplative Angel. 11x14, 2007.

Pincher Series I. Six 5x7 prints, 2007.


I started putting myself in my art as far back as 7 years old. I did a small oil painting of me sitting on a park bench, Jesus sitting on a red rainbow and God hidden in the universe beyond.
I have a portrait from almost every year since. Some are more intentional than others. Here are a few.

I intend to organize them all in one place someday. They’d make for an interesting display if I had any more wall space to hang them. You can tell I love trying different art forms. I’ve created my likeness in oil, collage, charcoal, photographs, paint-by-number, clay and digital art.

Robots Robots and more Robots

The buzz is big about ROBOTS. I’ve wanted to create a series of robots doing things that you wouldn’t think they’d be trying or doing. I did a series earlier this year, before the WALL-E craze, of robots “discovering” butterflies. They turned out cuter than I had intended, but that’s what you get when working with butterflies.

Robot Meeting Butterfly I, II, III, IV, 11x14 Acrylic on canvas. I sold this set in August 2008.

Handmade Collage Greeting Cards

I’ve been creating and selling collage greeting cards for the last 5 years now. I’ve been selling them fairly regular at a coffee shop in downtown Denver called Curious Coffee. Well, last week, I was asked if I wanted to sell in a bookstore in Golden, CO. Not like I’m trying to get ready for an art show coming up in September or anything, but I committed to 50 cards the first week of August. I have about 25 done so far. I never pressure myself.

Here are a few examples.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Business card as personal invitation

Many people have asked me if handing out business cards are worth it. I think that depends on what you consider worth it. If I was a "full-time" artist (unfortunately my computer knowledge pays the bills), then I would feel I needed to get my name out there as much as possible. I've had dozens of business cards, personally and professionally, and my experience is that about 1 in 100 people ever use the information on the card to contact you. I think that is worth it - especially since I print my own business cards and the cost is about 2 cents a piece. Usually, the contacts are wanting a piece of art they were undecided about at a show. Any sale helps. I think everyone should have at least one business card. You never know when people might decide they want what you're selling.

Friday, July 25, 2008

A few words about other artists named Paul Potts

I am NOT the British Opera singer, Paul Potts. I am the American multi-media artist, Paul Potts.
You wouldn’t think it was that common of a name, but I had similar troubles of mistaken identity back in high school. When I was a freshman there was a senior also named Paul Potts. We even had art class together! He was also a very talented artist – beautiful illustrations. I think he owns a hair salon in Tucson, Arizona these days. Anyhow, I remember a couple times when I was called into the principal's office for misdemeanors that my namesake had committed. That was exciting – let me tell you.

If you are interested in the singer artist Paul Potts, click here.

And no, I don’t sell his CDs here…but you can find them at

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Selling Small, Making Big

One of the things I’ve learned about selling art is that you have to have some sort of low price point items for sale. I have sold more than four times the dollar amount of small items than the total of medium to large item sales at a show. It makes sense that more people would be willing and able to buy smaller items, but the point is, you have to have enough small items available to purchase.

A good example is the small sandblasted stones that I am making every day. I could easily sell 100 of them at $4 each before I sell one $400 stone sculpture. The key is how much time is being spent on making the art. I might take 16 hours to create a large sculpture. To make the math easy, let’s say I want to make $25 an hour as an artist. That would mean I would charge $400 plus material costs for that sculpture. But when I consider the small stone that I try to spend less than 10 minutes creating. If I charge $4 a piece, that means I am making about $24 an hour. That includes the material cost too, so really it comes to be only about $20 an hour. I have been known to give away a few small stones at a show, so that profit just plummeted to about $14 an hour when I create the small stones versus when I create the large sculptures. But the key is, I really sell the small stones well. Plus, they are fun to make. So, the true lesson is, keep my day job and create the art with no regard to how much money I am making.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Pet Portraits

I've been doing pet portraits for several years now. I love doing cartoon/characteristic looking images of animals. The first one I did was of my beloved companion, Prancer. She had been my buddy for 14 years now and she still seems healthy and happy. She has a very distinctive personality, but for the most part, seems disinterested in the goings on with the rest of the world. The exception is when other animals are in her kingdom. She tolerates the other two house cats, but she has chased dogs out of the yard on more than one occasion. I hope this portrait lasts through time to be a monument of this artist's beloved cat.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

The artist Carlos Martinez

My friend and mentor artist Carlos Martinez died back in 2006, but I still miss him. His presence in still in my life, because I have dozens of his pieces of art on display in the house. What I miss most is the motivation and inspiration he provided when we talked about art and artists.

Carlos was a prolific artist, especially in the 80s after his divorce and the tough years that followed. His pieces are filled with interspection and sometimes you see a deep level of grief in the eyes of his creatures. I think that is easier to see when you view his body of work. You can get a better understanding of the artist from several pieces than from one that might seem "scary" or "dark". They don't look that way to me. I feel their connection to Carlos' Experience of Life.

I wish I could find a way to put his works online - even create a web page dedicated to his complete works. His family owns the largest number of his pieces, but he left me his slide portfolio that contains over 400, well-documented, images. Someday soon, they will find their way to a place where people can view and enjoy the works of Carlos Martinez.


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Sandblasted works by Mike Penny

Talking about sandblasting, Mike Penny really is the one that got me into the medium. Awhile back, we started talking about his idea of creating faux relics. It is a time when people are willing to buy an ancient-looking stone without having to pay the price of a true relic. I love the idea of taking a new piece of art and half-burying it in your yard for guests to discover and be in awe.

Even though I have my own sandblaster now, I still purchase Mike's pieces because he finds such great stone to work with and comes up with some incredible designs. Here is a piece I commissioned from him after I saw a similar piece he had done (that is a quarter in the bowl to give an idea of how large it is):

Mike Penny's website where you can purchase his blasted wonders is:

What image or words would you leave in a long-lasting medium like stone?


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

View Other Artists

Here are sites of artists I know and some I wish I knew in person.

Marcos Lima - Painter
My good friend. He inspires me to try new mediums!

Mike Penny - Sandblaster
Mike is just like me. He has enough ideas for three lifetimes. He has taught me so much and I am eternally grateful.

Derek Cadena - Painter
Derek is a great guy and an outstanding artist. I have several of his pieces hanging in the house. I like the EBay store that he and his partner, Brent Rodgers, built. Check it out.

Joseph Nigg - Writer
Joe inspires me to write. His books are...magical. Check out his Magical Beasts!

CT Nelson - Painter
CT is another artist who shows on Santa Fe Drive in Denver. His work is very unique and has a very jagged feel - shattered images of beautiful stories. I met him and plan on owning one of his paintings some day.

Matt Alber - Musician
I don't know Matt personally, but what a great voice, message, man. End of the World is a-m-a-z-i-n-g! I support his goals.

Read About Me

Who is Paul Potts?

First off, I am not the British opera singer that received his fame from the Britain's Got Talent television show. If you are interested in the singer artist Paul Potts, click here.

And no, I don’t sell his CDs here…but you can find them at

I am the American multi-media artist, Paul Potts. You wouldn’t think it was that common of a name, but I had similar troubles of mistaken identity back in high school. When I was a freshman there was a senior also named Paul Potts. We even had art class together! He was also a very talented artist – beautiful illustrations. I think he owns a hair salon in Tucson, Arizona these days. Anyhow, I remember a couple times when I was called into the principal's office for misdemeanors that my namesake had committed. That was exciting – let me tell you.

I was exposed to art when I was a young kid. My dad dabbled in oil painting, so he stretched some canvas over some plywood and gave me brush. At 7 years old, I painted this.

I have it hanging in the house and several friends are drawn to that abstract style of art. I try not to get hurt feelings when they prefer that piece to my more current pieces.

My inspiration really hit when I moved to Denver in 1999. I got involved with a non-profit art gallery on Santa Fe Drive called Chicano Humanities and Art Council or CHAC for short. Having a major show each year and several other showing opportunities really motivates you to produce. And of course, the more you produce, the more chances you have of selling. Selling your art then gives you the self-confidence to try more and expand your look. You can see by my portfolio that I have a diverse range of creations. I like trying new things and mediums that I perceive as challenging or out of my understanding seem to appeal to me the most. For example, I have always loved the smooth, polished marble sculptures. It is interesting that after I did a little research and bought some tools at the local hardware store, I could make a polished sculpture. And now that I have done it, I appreciate even more the old masters who didn't have the modern electric tools and yet they still produced life-like representations in stone.

I still have idea books filled with mediums and techniques that I want to try. I hope to soon be into glass fusing and kinetic wood sculptures. Keep checking my blog for my latest pursuits!

Browse My Portfolio

Here is just a sampling of some of my art. More to come soon! Click on any piece in the slideshow to see the larger version at Picasa Web Album.

Buy My Art

These are a few of the items I have for sale right now. After the art show, I will post some more. Please contact me if you are interested in commissioning a piece.

Shipping fee is $18.00 per piece. Shipping method is United States Postal Service.

Rich Peach by Paul Potts
Rich Peach
36" x 36"
acrylic on
deep canvas

Contemplating Buddha by Paul Potts
Contemplating Buddha
24" x 24"
acrylic on
deep canvas

Near Escape by Paul Potts
Near Escape
(dog & rabbit
by saguaro)
8" x 24"
watercolor & ink on paper - framed

Robot Silkscreen by Paul Potts
8" x 10"
silkscreen on paper - framed

Attend My Next Show

In December 2014, I will be back at Sol Shine. The opening is on Saturday the 13th. Stop by any time throughout the month though to see my wall of paintings and plaques with fun sayings.

I will have a table on First Friday and First Saturday at Anthology Fine Art. I will be showing glass plates, jewelry and other small pieces.

I also have pieces at the CHAC gallery in December for the Mercado show.  I will have rock owl sculptures, greeting cards, jewelry and glass plates.

My cards are still selling in Curious Coffee, downtown. I have about 50 available at all times.

First posting for the new Paul Potts blog site!

Oh yeah, I'm excited.

A new venue to post my art and talk about art. That really is my goal here. Art is my passion, and regardless of my audience, I want to explore making new art as I discover new artists and view new art mediums.

For instance, this year I got help from my brother, Dan, to install my compressor and sandblasting cabinet. This new tool has opened so many new art forms for me. I started with stone and glass, but there are possibilities with blasting blocks for block printing in wood, plastic or even linoleum. I've done a few pieces of furniture and stone yard art pieces. This one is called "Garden Sparrow" (granite, 2007). I love it. It is a fun start to the type of sculpture with sandblasted highlights that I want to create.

Two other quick thoughts:
Take a look at my older website that has over 100 of my art pieces in the "Virtual Gallery". Please comment on what you see there. Here is the link:

Also, a BIG THANKS to Skinnyboy for the help on getting this blog set up and running for me. Sorry that it has taken me so long to get it together. Visit his blog at


Saturday, July 5, 2008

It's Coming...

The new site is coming! I got stuck on a few things and got sidetracked but the new site will be up soon because I know that getting my artwork out there is important. I know you will find one piece or many pieces that you absolutely just need to have!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

* New Site Soon *

Hello friends!

Coming very soon is my new site. On it you can view my latest works, my favorite pieces, and a whole lot more! There will even be a way to purchase something you absolutely love and have it shipped right to your door! So be sure to check back soon and do not miss the debut of my new site!

Until then, do not miss a moment of Skinnyboy's antics. He is a competitive eater, and ranked 35th in the world by the IFOCE!

Did you see Paul Potts win the "Britain's Got Talent" competition by singing the opera song Nessun Dorma. Cool, huh?