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“Lupita World” Art Series

This Week At Emily Lupita Studio – The View From my Art Desk:

I have a new set of watercolor paintings rolling out…I’m calling it the “Lupita World” Art Series.

Emily Lupita Studio artist Emily Lupita watercolor painting
Lupita Hugs the World

The series is made up of 15 paintings – all featuring my Lupita world & made with extra bright Irodori antique palette watercolors.


Emily Lupita Studio artist Emily Lupita watercolor painting
Lupita Gives the Gift of Peace

My idea with this series was to create a group of paintings that all have a similar feeling and energy about them, focusing in on one design aspect (the globe), while still maintaining a sense of individual uniqueness.

Emily Lupita Studio artist Emily Lupita watercolor painting
Lupita Hugs the World

As I progressed, somewhere around my 7th or 8th painting, the process became more like meditation for me.

Emily Lupita Studio artist Emily Lupita watercolor painting stars
Lupita Hugs the World – Stars


By repeating the design, I gained confidence that I knew how to draw it – really knew it (especially around my 11th & 12th painting) and that freed me to think more creatively about the designs inside the kimonos.

Emily Lupita Studio artist Emily Lupita watercolor painting moon
Lupita Hugs the World – Moon


And I started experimenting more with color, resulting in my very first “golden” Lupita. The combination of gold, browns, and a pale antique blue…I had never tried it before & I ended up just falling in love with it.

Emily Lupita Studio artist Emily Lupita watercolor painting
Lupita Golden Globes


The original paintings in this series will be showing at the MSAA Gallery until the end of August. Stop by to see them displayed in matching white gallery frames – they look so wonderful all together on the wall.

Emily Lupita Studio artist Emily Lupita watercolor painting

You can shop for an original custom made painting from this collection, plus many more art prints and cards in my online Art Shop.

Sending wishes for a beautiful week ahead,

~Emily Lupita

[ I’m tagging Facebook & Twitter posts about this topic with  #LupitaArtSeries   #EmilyLupitaStudio ]


“Lady with Fruit in Her Hair” – sold at the gallery to a wonderful lady for her office
Emily Lupita Studio artist Emily Lupita watercolor painting
“Lady with Fruit in Her Hair” by Emily Lupita
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This Week at Emily Lupita Studio: One Month Blogiversary & Aya Sofya Painting

Thank You!

Today I’m celebrating the one month anniversary of my new Emily Lupita Studio blog. Sending out a special Thank You! to everyone who has visited, followed, and/or left a comment during my first month. I’ve so enjoyed getting it all set up and writing a little each day about my artwork and travels. I’m happy to have met my start up goal of a full month of daily posts, and hope to keep up with my long-term goal of at least weekly updates from here on out.


This Week at Emily Lupita Studio:

This week I’ve been continuing my work on my new Aya Sofya painting and I have everything done now except the background on the original.  I have just this morning decided on a turquoise blue background with purple flowers and should finish soon now that I am (happily and gratefully) returned to my peaceful daily life back in the studio.

I’ll post the final painting in my Artwork Gallery when finished. I also like to keep a version of the painting with a white background, as well as choose a paper background for my portrait paintings. For this design I decided on a cool paper with swirls in purple and gold. This means for each painting, there may end up being three or four design versions.

Aya Sofya Lupita Post

You can see the details of the two versions (above) that I’ve already finished in my Artwork Gallery here:

and here:

For more info on the mosaic inspiration behind this painting, please see my earlier blog post here:

I wish you a wonderful week full of happiness,

-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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Travelogue Thursday: San Luis Potosi, Mexico

Travelogue Thursday August 01 MEXICO

This week as I reflect back on my travels, I am so grateful for a very special journey I took with my mother to her hometown of San Luis Potosi, Mexico. We went there to visit my mother’s sister, my Tia Mago, and her brother, my Tio Lito. It was such a pleasure to witness my mother laughing & talking for hours over good food with her brother & sister. She hadn’t seen them in so many years, but they seemed to just pick up right where they left off. I also got to spend time with my cousins & their families on this journey, meeting many of them for the first time, and really cherish the days we spent together.

I especially love this photo of the three siblings at a candy vendor just as they discover their favorite sweet treat from childhood. “Dad used to make this!” they all three said, pointing to the pile of candy at the same time. “Remember?” And they started to share memories of my grandfather making candy in big copper pots. My Tia Mago placed a piece in my hand and said, “And now you can share this memory, too.” What a beautiful moment.

Not too long after we visited, my Tio Lito passed away, may he rest in peace. My mother told me that when she heard the news of his passing, she was overwhelmed with gratitude that we were able to go and visit, that she had these precious days to remember and photos of us together to treasure. I felt the same way.

This journey to Mexico remains as one of the most heartfelt trips I’ve ever taken. From it I am reminded that travel can give us the greatest gift of all…time together with the people we love.

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New Painting: Aya Sofya Lupita


I have a new painting coming to life on my easel this morning. It is always exciting to see the emergence of a new design. Right now I’m trying to decide the colors to use on the robe and if I should add some sort of stars, flowers or maybe stripes. I’m also debating whether to make the background black or leave it white. Only time will tell, I suppose. I’ll be sure to post the finished painting so you can see how it turned out.

This painting is inspired by my time in Istanbul, Turkey, particularly by the mosaics inside the Hagia Sophia. (Also known as the Aya Sofya.)

Aya Sofya Lupita

Here I am in the Aya Sofya with an enlarged detailed reproduction of one of the mosaics on the walls of this amazing cathedral / mosque / museum. This is truly one of my favorite places…full of light and peaceful wonder.

Here is an excerpt from Lonely Planet with some history of the mosaics:

Lonely Planet review for Aya Sofya

Sophia in Latin, Haghia Sofia in Greek and the Church of the Divine Wisdom in English, this extraordinary building is İstanbul’s most famous monument.

Emperor Justinian had the Aya Sofya built as part of his effort to restore the greatness of the Roman Empire. It was completed in 537 and reigned as the greatest church in Christendom until the Conquest in 1453. Mehmet the Conqueror had it converted into a mosque and so it remained until 1935, when Atatürk proclaimed it a museum.

On entering his great creation for the first time almost 1500 years ago, Justinian exclaimed, ‘Glory to God that I have been judged worthy of such a work. Oh Solomon! I have outdone you!’ Entering the building today and seeing the magnificent domed ceiling soaring heavenward, it is easy to excuse his self-congratulatory tone.

As you walk into the inner narthex, look up to see a brilliant mosaic of Christ as Pantocrator (Ruler of All) above the third and largest door (the Imperial Door). Once through this door the magnificent main dome soars above you. Supported by 40 decorated ribs, it was constructed of special hollow bricks made in Rhodes from a unique light, porous clay; these rest on huge pillars concealed in the interior walls, which creates an impression that the dome hovers unsupported.

The curious elevated kiosk screened from public view is the Sultan’s loge. Ahmet III (r 1703–30) had it built so he could come in, pray and leave again unseen, thus preserving the imperial mystique. The ornate library, on the west wall, was built by Sultan Mahmut I in 1739.

In the side aisle to the northeast of the Imperial Door is the weeping column, with a worn copper facing pierced by a hole. Legend has it that putting one’s finger in the hole can lead to ailments being healed if the finger emerges moist.

The large 19th-century medallions inscribed with gilt Arabic letters are the work of master calligrapher Mustafa İzzet Efendi, and give the names of God (Allah), Mohammed and the early caliphs Ali and Abu Bakr


From the floor of Aya Sofya, 9th-century mosaic portraits of St Ignatius the Younger (c 800), St John Chrysostom (c 400) and St Ignatius Theodorus of Antioch are visible high up at the base of the northern tympanum (semicircle) beneath the dome. A seraph (winged biblical angel) is just to their east. Next to the three saints, but seen only from the upstairs east gallery, is a portrait of Emperor Alexandros. In the apse is a wonderful mosaic of the Madonna and Child; a nearby mosaic depicts the archangel Gabriel.

The upstairs galleries house the most impressive of Aya Sofya’s mosaics and mustn’t be missed. They can be reached via a switchback ramp at the northern end of the inner narthex. The magnificent Deesis Mosaic (The Last Judgement) in the south gallery dates from the early 14th century. Christ is at the centre, with the Virgin Mary on the left and John the Baptist on the right.

At the apse end of the southern gallery is the famous mosaic portrait of Empress Zoe (r 1028–50), who had three husbands and changed this mosaic portrait with each one. The portrait of the third Mr Zoe, Constantine IX Monomachus, survives because he outlived the empress.

To the right of Zoe and Constantine is another mosaic depicting characters with less-saucy histories: in this scene Mary holds the Christ child, centre, with Emperor John (Johannes) Comnenus II (the Good) to the left and Empress Eirene (known for her charitable works) to the right. Their son Alexius, who died soon after this portrait was made, is depicted next to Eirene.

As you leave the museum from the narthex, make sure you turn and look up above the door to see one of the church’s finest late-10th-century mosaics. This shows Constantine the Great, on the right, offering Mary, who holds the Christ child, the city of Constantinople; Emperor Justinian, on the left, is offering her Aya Sofya.

On the opposite side of Aya Sofya Meydanı are the Baths of Lady Hürrem (Haseki Hürrem Hamamı), built as Aya Sofya’s hamam from 1556 to 1557. Designed by Sinan, the hamam was commissioned by Süleyman the Magnificent in the name of his wife Hürrem Sultan, known to history as Roxelana.

Read more:

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Introducing Lupita Portraits: Juanita in a Blue Dress

5-1 Portrait Juanita Blue Dress

Introducing a new series of paintings I’ve named “Lupita Portraits.” These are paintings I’ve been making on 8 x 10 Canson watercolor art board of women with wings, portrait style. This painting is “Juanita in a Blue Dress” and is an homage to my beautiful mother, Juana Maria.

Those of you who haven gotten to know my artwork over the years may be surprised that all the paintings in this Lupita watercolor series have faces and are painted in a slightly different style. I was surprised, too! As an artist I sometimes wonder where the paintings come from – and how it is I can be creating the image, but then also surprised by it. However it happens, a surprise…something new…is very exciting!