About Me

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I am an artist, a wife, a mother, a friend, a deviant and a special education teacher. I say artist first because I cease to be sane if i don't work on my art, seriously, I have to go into therapy... My work is an evolution of my experiences and philosophy. It spans multiple mediums and subjects, most recently focusing on the balance of expression and form. I spend a lot of time on chaos theory and macro/micro theory. The theory of balance and entropy in the universe fuels my inspiration. I love movies and philosophy, sometimes spiraling into deep conversations about both. These are my musings and thoughts, as well as insight into my artistic process and my work View more at: GoldenSpiralDesigns.deviantart.com redbubble.com/people/caitlinpadilla

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Yule Time Thoughts

Christmas and Chanukah have come and gone, Kwanza has begun and we are in the week before a new year begins.  This is always a strange week. a week filled with elation, relaxation, bittersweet goodbyes and, for some, a sense of urgency or hurry to complete goals set from the previous year.
                    It is also a week of reflection. This year is coming to a close, and it gives me pause. Pause to cypher through everything that has happened and come to terms with my feelings about it all.  In the hectic month leading up to Christmas, it is easy to get caught up in all of the crap. The family, the shopping, the cleaning, cooking, decorating, etc.  We have gone through major home renovations, and finishing it all blended right into the holiday frenzy, making the time compact and still not have any release or relaxation.
                 I have my studio, and it is wonderful. I just haven't had time to use it.  Creative production is a strange thing.  I try to explain it to people, and they never really understand.  It comes in bursts.  I cannot force it. Maybe it is just me, maybe other artists can turn it on and off, like a switch, and can produce amazing work on cue. Maybe I am lazy, and have no work ethic (though I know that isn't true). My best work comes from an emotional place, not a cerebral one. I genuinely have to "feel" like making art. If I try to force it, it comes out crappy (or at least I think its crappy) and I don't like it. I resent it. It feels like work, and I never want my passion to feel like work.  I have gotten more comfortable with trying to at least set aside some time each day to work on some aspect of my art.  I can go through and adjust my online store, make prints, or work on a piece.  There are so many aspects of it all, twitter, Facebook, Redbubble, DeviantArt, blog. I have to keep it all updated and get myself out there.  It is a lot, but I know it is what I want, and am going to get. It just won't happen over night.
           I have gone through a lot this year, and I have learned to be more comfortable with change and letting go of control.  I can control what I do with my art. What direction I take it, making it a legit business and truly becoming a working artist.  I cannot control how and if people will react or interact with it.  The fear of rejection and failure have long been the thing that has held me back.  It is the thing that has stopped me from even trying sometimes. Because, if I don't try, I can't fail.  I know this is bullshit, but it somehow sounds logical in my mind.
           Enough. If I got through this year, with everything that has happened and everything changing, then I can certainly get a business license and sell my wares in a booth.  I can get a portfolio together (something I've done many times before) and send it to the heads of film art departments.  I resolve to make this year a business boom! I will sell work, get commissions, create a viable business and my work will be featured in a move, Goddammit! Resolution: check! Come at me 2016!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015


Here are the first two in a new series I am working on. I really love working on black paper and the human form. I started them as a way to get back to basics. I have been doing a lot of complex, vibrant pieces, so I thought this would be a nice change. I always have to remind myself that change is good. It's hard at first, but inevitably, I always feel better once I have accepted it.  I am working on another two, and maybe more. They are a lot of fun.
I just started going through my art room, I have to pack it up to do some re-modeling, and i found my sketch books from as far back as high school.  I used to journal a whole lot. I have found that writing things down helps me a great deal when I am working through something emotional or creatively blocked. It was really neat going through all of my past work, thinking about what was going on in my life.  It is a great reference to my life. I am glad I have always kept them and continue to use them as a sort of therapy.  I sometimes get lost in the sentiments and feelings and memories they bring back. I have forgotten quite a bit of my life already. Its good to have those reminders and memories. I love the nostalgic feeling. I also think it is very cool to look at my evolution as an artist. Some of my work seems like another person did it.  I still find things that i love and am proud of. I can see the beginnings of my themes and subject matter. Some ideas were just not ready six years ago, but I can create them now. Other creations and themes I have left behind, like an old lover, to be sealed in time with fondness. I hope that, in another ten years, I can look back at my work now and think the same thing.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Letting Go

First off, this is not a depressed rant. More of an intellectual musing. I have found that I have a very hard time letting go of people. Maybe it stems from my own fear of being forgotten.  It is rare that my feelings for someone change. If I like you, I will probably always like you. If you were ever my friend, I will most likely love to pickup right where we were.  I will always call you back, I will always remember what it was like, and how we had fun.  I miss people terribly, and I frequently wish old friends would get back in touch.  I have many friends whom I don't agree with about politics or religion, but I still consider them friends.  I'm not sure how people do it. How can people just stop being friends. There has to be something huge to make me not want to have a relationship with someone. Is this the same for others? It makes me think that I have done something to make them just want to forget me.  It is troubling, and I don't know how to reconcile it within myself.  I understand that life changes, and situations change. People move, and grow up. Life gets busy and goals change, but a good friend is always a good thing.  I'd like to think that I am  a good friend. I'd like to think that I am unforgettable, like most people, I imagine. I thrive on human contact. Maybe others just don't. They don't need others around to stimulate their intellect or to empathize with the human experience.  I just don't get how you can have such a connection with another person, share moments, experiences and feelings, and then nothing.  I am not someone who feels awkward or regrets any experience, good or bad, with someone. I think it all is part of the tapestry that is the relationship. Anyway, that is all.

Sunday, August 9, 2015


Just a short one today, I have a Redouble store up and running!  Check it out!

There's a lot of great stuff, I know you want to buy some!

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Skulls and Memories




"Whirlpool Galaxy"

This summer I have finished six pieces and am working on three more.  I finally finished a piece I started three years ago, and did a very personal and cathartic self-portrait.  Now I have started two different series, the Pin-up girls who are simultaneously sexy, nostalgic and a little frightening and a few dealing with the concept of macro/micro and timeless.
          I am finding it hard  to NOT paint. My mind wanders and I feel most at peace when creating.  I think about my youth and listen to music.  I can recall exactly what I was doing and how I felt when I first heard a song. Some memory or feeling a decade old will come flooding back.  I love music. I relate music to people a lot of the time. Metallica and The Scorpions remind me of Jon, my husband. Actually, a lot of music does. The summer we got together, now almost two decades ago. The Beatles remind me of middle school and my friends "Barney" and Jessica.  We used to listen to the LPs and try to find hidden messages. And then Celerah and existential conversations well into the wee hours.  James Brown makes me think of Derek and his huge JNCOs, we would drive around in his white cruiser he would talk about Arizona. I think about clubbing in Denver and listening to Fatboy Slim.

These moments flood over me, like I am watching a movie of my life. "Paradise Circus" by Massive Attack makes me think of my friend Ben, and hanging out cooking.  I think of snippets and smells, what I was feeling and a something I shared with someone else. "Hotel California" brings back images of my twenty year friendship with Brynn, and how much we have grown up together. And, of course, Led Zeppelin is my mom.  Movies too. Edward Scissorhands, Clue, Ghostbusters, Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure and Beetlejuice all take me back to my childhood and my sister and brother.
           It is amazing to me how much of what is happening in popular culture shapes who you are.  I just watched Baz Luhrmann's Romeo And Juliet and I am instantly transported to 1996 and high school shenanigans.

 "Blue Whale"

  The largest creature ever to live o Earth.

Time is a strange thing, it is something that has puzzled humanity for centuries. We are constantly trying to stop it, reverse it, travel forwards and backwards. Leap and travel through some indescribable void. To see beyond ourselves or recapture a moment. That is what makes art so beautiful.  Art is time travel.  That feeling, that memory takes you back in time. Looking at a galaxy five hundred thousand lightyears away is looking back in time. I work to create a frozen moment, capture a feeling or a thought.
                I think that is why music, film, painting etc. are so important and wonderful. We can time travel in the comfort of our own homes, in our cars, museums and movie theaters.

Shakespeare is timeless, by the way.


Friday, July 17, 2015

Giant Heads and Octopi

       First of all, here is this:

More on that in a moment.

          This summer has been a cleansing breath of fresh air. Not only have we been getting a record amount of rain, but I feel like I can breathe for the first time in a long while. I quit my job teaching with public school. It was figuratively sucking my soul.  I know it was the right decision, and I feel a sense of freedom. I weep for the future though. I'm going to go off on a tangent here, but bare with me.
          The state of public education in this country is at a breaking point and I don't want to be there when the shit goes down.  The system is pure merde and I hate saying it, but I know it's going to have to FAIL before it gets better. Parents need to be more involved, take on responsibility and quit blaming teachers. Teachers worth should not be contingent on test scores and canned curriculum. We NEED to bring back art, music, shop class, dance and at least half an hour of recess every day! We need yoga and calisthenics. "no child left behind" is bullshit, instead of raising the level of all the students, it lowers standards and holds kids back.  Gifted, enriched and honors classes are nothing but good for fostering achievement and advancement, plus they keep smart kids from getting bored and getting into trouble. Remedial classes are great for helping kids who are struggling.  How the hell did it get this bad?! Common Core isn't much better. Yes, it is a good idea to have a standardized curriculum of sorts, so that we have a general assurance that kids in Vermont will learn the same stuff as kids in Alabama, but it still is so flawed. The original design and implementation was totally derailed when they got rid of the teachers who developed it in favor of the people who make and sell the standardized tests. How Effed up is that? the people who profit from the tests should NOT be in charge of what we teach! Alright, I'll get off my soap box...for now... heres a palette cleanser..

           So, back to the octopus.  I just finished this bad boy. I started it in July of 2012, after a deeply emotional episode. It sat, static, a frantic background in emotional turmoil. For months. After I got pregnant, I new I wanted it to be an octopus, so i got into it. Little did I know the sheer magnitude of 750+ suction cups. Suffice it to say, I had to take a break from it again.  I had everything done, but it wasn't finished, you know? So every once in a while I would glare at it, staring back at me with that rectangular pupil.  As I said before, this summer has been great. I have had a burst of creative energy and it has been cathartic.  I finished the octopus, finally, and I feel it is complete. I like it too, so...there's that.

           I have also completed the first self portrait I have done in I don't know how many years.  I'm not a fan of doing them, but in light of my recent health issues, self-exploration and evaluation, I thought it would be good.  It didn't start out as a selfie, but I couldn't stop it once it started.

   Now, keep in mind that both of these are 3 feet by 4 feet. Thus, giant head.  I feel good about them both.  And, I am still flush with creative juju.  Until then, stay classy Burque.


Thursday, June 25, 2015

Creativity: Awake!

this is one of the pieces I'm working on. just background at this point.  Im thinking about foreground, and i have a few ideas. it feels good to be working again.

So, it has been tough. it is hard to be creative on command. i have been able to have some time to myself to get some work done, but a whole lot of nothing happened, so i just stated sketching and doodling. it was crap. but i kept on keepin' on and eventually i noticed i kept seeing things in the clouds. you know, animals, buildings, creatures... it was then that i realized that i was getting some creative juices flowing. i also realized that i needed to listen to music, very loud music while i worked. it proved fruitful. i am currently working on three paintings and i feel good about them. i also feel better in general.  very cathartic. i have noticed that i am a bit melancholy and in a very "remember-y" mood.  I find myself thinking about the past, maybe three, four years ago. i hope that painting will release some of my angst and i can focus on the present and future perhaps. anyway, there it is.

Friday, May 1, 2015

Change Is Scary

             So, on Hallowen of 2011 I was driving home, hungover, from class after a long weekend of partying. It was evening, but still light out. I was on the phone with a good friend and I just wanted to relax when I got home. I started having a strange feeling, almost out of body type of experience. I felt like I was outside of myself, on my left shoulder, watching. Everything looked far away. I tried to tell my friend, but I had no words.  I couldn't speak. It was really strange. I thought I was just tired and kept going.
             The next thing I knew, I was outside of my car and very disoriented. There was a guy, Magnum P.I. To be exact, and he was telling me to stay calm and asking if I was ok. He said a lot of other stuff, but I was so confused that I didn't really pay attention. Mostly I was trying to reconcile why Magnum P.I. Was talking to me and why his hair was blonde, but his mustache dark brown. Slowly it started to sink in. I had a seizure, while driving, I hit a building. Magnum P.I. Was a paramedic, it was Halloween and he was in costume.  I got into the ambulance and called my husband. I told him what had happened and to meet me at the hospital.
          The rest of that evening was E.R. and nurses in costume. A fairy came and took my vitals, hooked me up to things and asked me questions. Jon came, and was worried, but happy I was alright. A neurologist came, and after 30 seconds perscribed me keppra (a powerful anti-seizure med). Then we left. I went home and was confused, I had never had a seizure before, what did it mean? I took the meds, but after two days, I knew there was something wrong. I felt like I did in the car, like everything was fake. I don't know what suicidal thoughts are normally, but I started thinking that if I were dead, everything would be better. I wasn't sad or upset about it. It was matter of fact. I knew this was wrong, so I called Jon and family for help. I stopped taking the medication and stayed with family for a couple of days. I saw my doctor, and everything seemed to be fine. I went back to my life.
           Six months passed and it was June. I was at home, on the phone. It was afternoon. I felt that weird feeling again. I know now that is an aura and it is a warning sign. I had trouble speaking, but got out the words "please come" and sat down. The next thing I know, I am walking out into my living room, I had changed my skirt, and my friends were there. I did not go to the ER, but I went to my doctor and decided that I was drinking a bit too much, and that could be the trigger.
           I quit drinking, and six months later got pregnant and had my beautiful baby girl. Everything was great for over two years. I had started drinking again, but not nearly as much as before. On December 27th at 1am I woke Jon up having a seizure. After going to the doctor again, I decided that any drinking was too much. After a month and a half of no drinking however, I had another one in my sleep on Feb 15th. I had been sleep deprived and stressed. I have seen two neurologists and have a new GP (who is the best of the lot). I have had a random high white blood cell count for a couple of years, and he has experience with infection and seizures. After the Feb seizure I started taking Gabapentin, which seemed to be working. Occasionally I would feel an aura in the past and this stopped those. I was given another medication, Lamictal, to start. I wanted to wean my daughter before I started taking it, so I hadn't started yet, and the new doctor and I agreed that if I didn't need to, then I shouldn't. So, I went back to my life, as much as I could. I started taking all kinds of vitamins and trying to relax and get more sleep (yeah, right. With a 20 month old). But I did as much as I could.
            One of the unfortunate things is that you can't drive, you have to be seizure free for six months. I understand this rule, but it still sucks.  I have been staying with my parents because Jon is out of town, and they drive me and watch the baby. I've gotten used to it, and I knew it wouldn't be  forever. I am an elementary teacher, and school is almost over. I went to work yesterday April 30th like any other day. I was almost halfway to six months and summer wouldn't be that bad. I decided to quit teaching with public school and focus on my art and raising my baby. I had just told my principal and was feeling good with my decision. I walked into a classroom to talk to a teacher and started getting an aura. I didn't want to believe it. I couldn't talk. I should have sat down. I walked out of the room and fell, like a ton of bricks, smashing my head and shoulder on the concrete floor. I woke up to everyone surrounding me, telling me I had a seizure and the paramedics were coming. SHIT.
             My mom came with the baby and followed us to the ER. Jon left production in Santa Fe on an Adam Sandler movie and met me at the ER. I got a CT scan to make sure my brain wasn't bleeding. We went home. I started taking the Lamictal and will have to wean my daughter at the same time. I have done research, and it looks like it's a low enough dose that she will be fine. I am going to get another EEG and see another neurologist. I can't drive until Halloween.
         I feel scared and defeated. I don't know what's wrong with me. The last for months have been hard, like really hard. My daughter has had Roseola, a horrible stomach bug, a cold, and another stomach bug (which I think is what triggered the seizure yesterday). I have been stressed, sleep deprived had a stomach bug, can't drive, staying with my parents and bumming rides like a teenager. My husband has been out of town for three months and I don't like my job. So much has changed and is changing in my life, and I just don't know how to deal with it all.  I have an awesome family and great friends, a loving and supportive husband and a brilliant adorable child. I still feel good about my recent career shift. I just have this gnawing feeling, this uncertainty. A feeling of complete loss of control. I don't know why I keep having seizures, no one does. I just have to try this and wait.