The automobile is an iconic symbol of American culture and history. Within Chicano culture, old classic cars are popular, iconic and considered not just instruments for mobility but are re-fashioned machines with aesthetic appeal and artistic craftsmanship. Both my grandfather and my father had a handsome old classic car. My son continues the tradition with his love of old classic cars and trucks. This painting of my son with his 1953 Chevy truck is painted with watercolors and prismacolor pencils. As I worked on the painting, I wondered about what travels this handsome truck had taken and what stories it could tell. I wanted the painting to have a feeling of a relaxing warm summer day. In designing the painting I spent much time studying the photographs and thinking about how to best convey the beauty of this ageless icon through a simple but forceful rendering using the watercolor media. I used this particular viewpoint to showcase both the front and the side of the truck to accent the curves of the chrome bumper, the grill, the hood and the side step. I used curved brush and pencil lines on the body of the car to introduce movement to this otherwise static composition. I gave the car’s surface rich, cool blue-black metallic details to contrast with the warm reflections of the natural surroundings. I wanted to convey a feeling of strength in both the classic truck and the young man leaning against it. Old classic cars and trucks are remnants of the past that remind us of good times, family, tradition and the importance of appreciating our past and our heritage.

The paintings featured in the September issues of La Prensa can be purchased as note cards, prints or posters through Corazon Arts and Publishing, LLC which is a small business enterprise headquartered in El Paso Texas. It is a family owned business that creates original art focusing on products that promote the traditions, customs, food, dance, and daily life of the Hispanic culture in the Borderlands and throughout the US. Corazon Arts and Publishing represents Galeria del Sol and the artwork of Maria Almeida Natividad. Their mission is to produce art products and books that promote an appreciation of the Hispanic culture and other diverse cultures in order to help develop a greater understanding of the multicultural American dream.

Her work is currently featured in a virtual exhibition at Arizona State University called Comida y Tradiciones Art Exhibit on view now here
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