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This Week at Emily Lupita Studio: Artistic Inspiration

2-1 Pearl Earring

Artistic inspiration comes in many forms. This past weekend I went to see the Girl with a Pearl Earring by Vermeer at the Atlanta High Museum of Art. I loved being back in the art museum, surrounded by beauty in all its many forms. When I got home, I was looking at the museum’s website and found their “Go Girl” gallery. It offers a chance to be “part of the exhibit” by adding yourself to their online gallery – complete with Vermeer’s famous pearl earring and headscarf.
Lupita with a Pearl Earring
I found this hilarious and, of course, submitted my own photo right away, not wanting to miss out on this once in a lifetime experience to laugh at myself dressed as a famous painting. I showed the picture to my husband and he thought it was great. He suggested that I try to paint my own Lupita version of the famous painting, based on this silly photo. I wasn’t so sure…but he kept encouraging me. So, I played around with it, trying all sorts of new things…and eventually this new painting emerged.

2-1 Pearl Earring

I was delighted – most of all because I had such a good time doing it – I was like a little kid again with my paints designing away on a rainy day. But also because it felt like I was trying something new and I got to grow a bit as an artist. Once I got over the initial fear of making a mistake (the first couple versions I painted I had to throw away), I just really enjoyed creating & exploring the space on my art board. Then once the painting was finished, I had fun pairing it with a couple different paper backgrounds in purple.

My previous visit to the art museum was in May with my mother and a group of close friends to see the Frida & Diego exhibit, which was just beyond stunning & still stays with me to this day. I’m hoping one of these days another wave of inspiration will roll in from that experience…can’t wait to see where the tides will take me next.

What inspires you to create? Are there specific places you go to soak up the creative spirit?


-Emily Lupita

Featured Painting: “Lupita with a Pearl Earring” watercolor & ink on Canson art board by Emily Lupita Plum-Guclu, 2013

Prints & Canvas & iPhone Case Available Here:

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This Week at Emily Lupita Studio: Girl with a Pearl Earring

IMG_2324 - Version 2This week I went to the High Museum of Art in downtown Atlanta. They had a special event of Friday night jazz & viewing of the fabulous Girl with a Pearl Earring painting by Vermeer. My husband, Alper, and I went with our amazing friends, Diana & Selim, and just had the best time.

The Girl with a Pearl Earring painting was stunning. It has been recently restored and the paint glistened through the centuries. I loved it and could have stayed standing there, face-to-face in front of it all night.


Alper found this cool coloring book in the gift shop and decided I just had to have it. Inside are 52 coloring plates of famous paintings with 10 facts about each painting pointed out on the page so you can learn more about how the master painter created it. It is hard to explain, so I’ve included a page here.


This exhibit inspired me in so many ways. I loved the many paintings, including some by Rembrandt, and how the paint still had its brilliant shine after so many years. It reminded me of the quote, “Art is what endures.”  I feel so grateful to have had the chance to see these masterpieces painted so long ago, enduring the journey through time and space all the way from their original home in Holland to the museum where we stood to gaze at them last night.

Here is the link for more information on the Atlanta High Museum of Art:


-Emily Lupita

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Painting: Lupita Dreams of World Travel

Travels The World

“Lupita Dreams of World Travel”

Irodori watercolor & Sakura ink on cold press watercolor paper

From the Lupita Dreams watercolor series by Emily Lupita Plum-Guclu

Prints, cards & iphone cases of this painting now available in my Gallery & Artwork Shop or at this direct link:

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Travelogue Thursday: Once You Have Traveled


“Once you have traveled, the voyage never ends, but is played out over and over again in the quiestest chambers. The mind can never break off from the journey.” -Pat Conroy

This quote really struck me the first time I read it. I imagine I’ve read it again a hundred times since then. I find it so true that the journey continues in the mind, that the voyage never ends. I know for myself, the travels I’ve taken influence me to such a high degree – on all different levels throughout my day. While cooking I can be reminded of the smell of a noodle house in Japan or out on a walk around my neighborhood I can pause to find myself remembering the view from the top of Mt. Snowdon in Wales.


This is one reason why I like to keep little treasures from my travels in my studio. I have bird whistles from Nicaragua next to my candles on the mantle, a painted wooden mirror frame from Ecuador on the wall behind my paintings desk, and Mexican flower pots in my garden. I keep my drawing pens in a pottery container from Merida and use paints from Japan. I put flowers in a Turkish vase on my dining room table in front of a collection of tiles I bargained for in the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul.  The purple chair covers are handwoven textiles from Chiapas.


These small pieces I tucked away and carried home with me help fill my everyday life with the colors, textures and memories of the larger world.

What types of special things do you keep in your studio / creative place? What beautiful places do they remind you of?


-Emily Lupita


Emily Lupita

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The Artist Alphabet: B is for Beauty

Post B is for Beauty

In my Lupita artist alphabet, B is for beauty.

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Q & A: What type of paints do you use?

irodori paints

Q & A: What type of paints do you use?

I use a type of watercolor paint called Irodori Antique Japanese Watercolors. They are made in Japan by Holbein.

When I was living in Japan I fell in love with the fantastic contrast of patterns and colors in the traditional Japanese textiles used to make kimonos and yukatas (cotton summer kimonos).  I was looking for a way to paint my own vision of these vivid patterns and came across these watercolors at my local art store in the city of Miyakonojo, Miyazaki, where I was teaching English in an academic high school at the time. I had been using the Holbein watercolor paint set in traditional Western colors for several years at that point and got so excited about this particular Irodori color series as soon as I saw it.

This is the description of the paints on one of my boxes:

“Ancient oriental watercolors are characterized by their delicate hues. Now today’s artist can journey back into time to create with the same timeless palette used by Japanese and Chinese artists 15 centuries ago. Delicate and harmonious, the 48 Irodori colors are created using pure pigment in gum arabic for clean, crisp results that won’t darken or muddy. Highly saturated, they granulate very freely, and are more opaque in the true Asian fashion.”

Sure enough, once I started using this Irodori set in the antique colors, I knew this was the paint for me. That was more than a decade ago and I’m still using the same paints. I’ve had to refill a couple times, but lucky for me Dick Blick Art Supplies carries the series and I can re-order online instead of traveling back to Japan. Although…it would be a wonderful excuse to get to return to the land of the rising sun.

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New Gallery & Artwork Shop


I have a new online gallery…hurray!

Creating it has been a true labor of love for some time now, so I’m delighted to see it this morning fully up and running. There are still several paintings and a few collections I need to add to it, but I’m excited with how it has turned out so far. I especially love how I can group the paintings into different collections, as well as have one collection showing all paintings together.


This gallery also serves as my new artwork shop. I’ve partnered with Fine Art America, the premiere artist support company online, to do all the printing. Because they have such a wide network, orders can be placed & shipped world-wide and products include professional artist prints in a range of paper (like watercolor, rag & velvet), prints on canvas, metal & acrylic, greeting cards and even artwork prints on iphone cases. (I’m especially excited about getting a new iphone case with my artwork on it!)IMG_2212

They also offer a wide range of framing & matting options in a variety of sizes, so you can customize the painting to fit where it will hang. The best thing is they have full customer service for buyers and a money back guarantee on all products. I’m so very grateful for their partnership with all of this amazing support and look forward to the places this new path will take me.

I’d love for you to visit the new gallery & post a comment below.


-Emily Lupita

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Painting: Lupezilla The Broken Hearted Monster

5-1 Lupita Monsters Broken Hearted Monster Blue

I’d like to introduce you to my Lupita Monsters series. This character’s name is Lupezilla  and she represents the fun, exciting & emotional side of Lupita.  The sentiment of this painting is, “Even though she is broken hearted, Lupezilla still insists on singing.”

I was inspired to start painting Lupezilla after spending some time in Xalapa and Oaxaca, Mexico. The amazing artisans of these regions make beautiful, colorful wooden (and sometimes paper maché) figures which are commonly known as alebrijes or figuras. An example is shown below.


I fell in love with the style of the alebrijes and began painting my own vision of them, which eventually manifested in Lupezilla and her two dogs, Mavizilla (miniature dachshund monster) & Yunazilla (Boston terrier monster). 

Special thanks to my Aunt Martha for encouraging me to show some of my monsters!

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New Painting: Silver Sari with Pink & Green Wings


I’m up late tonight in the studio finishing a new dog painting. This one is of Sari, my black & silver mini-dog. In this design she is wearing green earrings and has matching pink & green wings.

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My Art Shop: Custom Alphabet Name Prints

Lupita Alphabet

I posted a new item to my online art shop for custom name combinations of my Lupita Artist Alphabet Series. You can design any combination of letters you like. Some ideas are to spell names for a child’s room, create a family name series for your entryway, or for a reminder sign for the day on your stairway, like “love” or “hope.”

Full details are listed in my Etsy shop at this link:

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Golden Mavi with Pink Wings

Golden Mavi with Pink Wings

A fun painting to celebrate my five new paint colors including my new favorite – shimmery antique gold. Mavi is my real life mini-dog & sits next to me while I paint – my sweet loyal companion.