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visual artist and writer marisol diaz

i am a self-defined Nuyorican creative (that is a Puerto Rican who is from both the isles of Manhattan, NYC and the Caribbean). I share daily in the joy of education and live in a cute port town in New York, in a 'teensy-weensy' apartment with my two dogs and canary named Valentino. Check out my Etsy shop for purchasable pieces. Please do not reproduce imagery off of this site without explicit credit and no derivatives may be made of my original imagery- Thank You.

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Entries in Artful Blogging (34)


meet Lil Red Wolf design - Mary...she HAD a little lamb...


Introducing Little Red Wolf an artistically altered clothing line...

It has taken a while to get this set up for online debut but it is finally here! One of my first New Years resolution's done. CHECK! Using images straight out my sketchbook pages... I made a series of six introductory designs for my new Indie Biz - Little Red Wolf- artistically altered clothing & more...the image above was the catalog cover for my table at the craft fair where I debuted this past holiday season- and now after many request I am finally getting it all online and possible for you to share in the experience.

So in the next few posts make way for me to introduce the first of the six debut designs of Li'l Red Wolf . We will begin in this post and meet BEAR GIRL. If you are impatient and want to see it all just go to www.LilRedWolf.com Original Sketchbook Page and modified Silk- Screen transparency by m.diaz


That Doll Has Been Named and the winner is....

Congrats to the following Amarettogirl Blog Readers: Alexis and Blue Demon- Your suggestions have become a part of the naming of this doll!

meet Alma Destripada named by Amarettogirl Blog readers Alexis & Blue Demon and me!

I used your contributions as diving boards for her final name selection. Alma does indeed mean "Soul" is Spanish, Alexis and Blue Demon suggested pairing it with 'Partida' which means broken in Spanish, so after considering a pairing like that, I decided DESTRIPADA was more accurate to my intention (since it means to gut the internal organs of an animal in Spanish). And well that was just much more what I was after. And now you get to see what is in place of her heart!

Time is the culprit here, repetitive, man-made, industrial TIME. It has ripped her heart out and left her to wait in ruins for what feels like an eternity....

Also thank you to all who contributed so many amazing options! It made choosing so so so so hard, runner ups were Clotilde and Melan Chloe. I even had some blog-comments-gone-awry-turned-texts reach me via my cell suggesting awesome names like 'Orla'! SO WINNERS! You don't just get your username in blog lights here, you get a photo of Alma!! (signed if you like). So if you want to claim it contact me via the contact button! and runner ups you get my constant love and devotion!!


Meeting and Working with Doll Artist & and Teacher Lillian Alberti

Doll Artist Lillian Alberti

Thanks to my good friend Manon,whose birthday gift to herself was a doll-making class this past October- I got to meet doll artist and teacher Lillian Alberti. Knowing my long-time interest in doll-making, Manon told me about the class at Boces and invited me to tag along with her and share in the experience. I am very grateful to Manon or I would have never met Lillian and learned about her accessibility via workshops.

Unfortunately, the class at Boces was only three Saturday mornings long and I had to travel out of the country (to Oaxaca, Mexico) during the very last session, so I was left to complete my doll on my own. As you will see I only got up to stage two with my class and teacher.

Nevertheless, meeting Lillian Alberti was SUPER inspiring and the two short classes I had were enough to ignite and unleash a pretty palpable creative firestorm inside me.

One of LIllian Alberti's work in progress dolls that I got to meet during my second class.

About Lillian, she graduated from Parsons School of Design with a BFA in Fashion Design, and worked extensively in the fashion industry as both a designer and illustrator, before beginning her venture into Art Dolls. She has a wonderful story of being so affected and lured into art doll-making by a moment in time when she passed by Van Craig sculptural dolls and his art in a Tiffany window display while walking around NYC. Now if you have never seen Van Craig work - you are in for a super treat and should click here: VAN CRAIG. Furthermore, like me, Lillian is a LATINA! So on so many levels she was her Van Craig to me!!

my first clay doll teacher Lillian Alberti in class with her work in progress doll

My mind was set from the beginning that my doll would be a sad, sullen girl - this I knew.

So check out my early stages and as my students told me all along the way the images can be freaky...

Stage one photo and doll by m.diazStage two of my doll Stage three - Beginning the Painting photo and doll by M.Diaz

So having made dolls before and truly enjoying the spirit of allowing a narrative to develop between me, the process and the matter (which in this case of art-making is the doll), I allowed much to be developed intuitively as I went. I also based much of my artistic design choices on where my heart was at that moment.

So right around stage three (painting the doll) I decided (or she decided) that the surface treatment of an antique wooden puppet doll would suit her best and that she perhaps made her living in a Cirque du Soleil kind of way- performing for others and wearing a daily covering of clown make-up...and that maybe there had been a build up.
As a former clown, she at one time or another had done a lot of smiling before everything went sour. The way I imagined that her life had come undone and gone black of course was in matters of the heart. And so I used some glazing and inks,stains, and shellac instead of paint to get the effect I wanted. I also couldn't help noticing that the tears were doing a real number on her makeup and that her current outward face was a fusion between that old life and this new one.

paint jobpaint job and beginning of soul gutted process detail shot SO COME BACK here this week to see the finished doll..she has been soul-gutted has had her heart ripped out (and is living somewhere else in another vessel of sorts) with only a clock works of time existing in her chest now...AND HELP ME NAME HER!!!!! I will be asking in the next blog post for help as you get to know and see her - I would love your ideas, comments and when I finally have it narrowed down to top five we will take a vote!! So I hope to see you back here!

Modern Day Queens


photo by Gregg Emery

Context - The Dwight-Englewood School will be putting on a theatrical production of Alice in Wonderland this weekend in Englewood, NJ directed by Clinton Carbon


The Witching Hour is Near...

sketchbook scan by marisol diaz

Bullseye Glass Class in Portland, Oregon

So it has been a pretty jam packed summer for and unfortunately blogging has taken a backseat on the priority list, but tomorrow begins the new school year for me and it is time to buckle down and get back in front of the computer. The last two weeks of the summer I was in Portland Oregon taking glass classes at Bullseye glass. This is my second time taking classes at Bullseye and it never ceases to please. So here is a sneak peek at some of the new glass and sketchbook work that I have been working on.

my desk in the Bullseye Glass Class on Silkscreening on Glass with Michael Endo and Louise Krampien student work from my Image transfer for Kiln Glass class with Carrie Iverson and Louise Krampien

Can you guess which of all of these student pieces is mine? if you're a follower you should have no trouble at all! :)


A Survey of Color in Mexico...

Here are a series of photographs that I took this summer in my travels to Ensenada, Mexico and Manzanillo, Mexico. They're a study of color that gave my camera a run for its money and hopefully they spark the iris of your eye.

As a writer, I am often reminded that reality is frequently much more bizarre than fiction- but the same goes for the visual arts - since no painting I could ever do could embody such colors without appearing contrived. So I hope you enjoy these and let me know which are your favorites...


Artist Assistantship with the De La Torre Brothers in Ensenada, Mexico

"Creativity is the defeat of habit by originality."-Arthur Koestler

This is the perfect quote to surmise my summer thus far. It implies taking a wet rag to the set ingrained dirty lines of dust on your windshield and wiping them clean of routine, it implies an end to the repetitiveness and turning your life inside out and upside down by taking a 6 hour flight and landing into undetermined circumstances...to endure something new, something unadulterated and fresh - never before witnessed by your sensory powers. Hence something original is born.

I was super fortunate this summer to be asked/selected by the my long time prof glass artist friends, the De La Torre Brothers, to assist them with their work for three weeks this summer.

And so after kissing my fam goodbye, flying into San Diego and driving down to Baja California, I am finally here. And I am loving the wine region, fish port land, the people, the spanglish and the creative studio gig! The flora and fauna is absolutely stunning...I'm mesmerized. I feel like the ranch we are stationed on is right out of a Georgia O'Keefe movie. So I thought I'd share some vignettes of my beautiful trip so far- oh n my trailer...I hope you like!!


A Way to Keep Your Secrets of Secrets

Was browsing at Urban and I found this adorable tin ... Made by Blue Q who I've blogged about before with their uber-cute reusable grocery bags as an alternative to those wasteful n pesky plastic bags. Anyhoo I digress, they now have this 'Top Secret' tin and two others, one with the words 'Random Things' written on it and another with a funny vintage cartoon about that illegal substance that some folks like to use for ...medicinal purposes?? Yes well ... how great is this tin and it even comes with an if found card!

Here's what I think you should do - get yourself any tin (but this one is so stylish- watch Amelie (for the umpteenth time if you're like me), don't forget to write your 'if found' card fill the little box with random things - souvenirs from your travel - secret sentimental things - maybe your greatest wish and go bury it somewhere that even you will forget where it is .... Then let's wait n see when n how n if, it ever emerges!