FREE Workshops and Events

May 11, 2011


Jason demonstrating at Petroglyph National Monument

2011 MAY 14-15   |  10AM-4PM
Jason will be demonstrating and selling work.  There is no admission fee that I can remember.  Beautiful park with an interesting history and perfect small “hike” (really, a leisurely stroll).
Petroglyph National Monument 

2011 MAY 14  |  10PM-4PM
Sean will be demonstrating and selling work.  This will be MY FIRST demonstration all by my lonesome, so come by and say hi!  The historic Casa San Ysidro will celebrate Heritage Day with music, performances and artist demonstrations. Admission is free.
Heritage Day  |  Casa San Ysidro
973 Old Church Road  Corrales, NM 87048

2011 MAY 28   |  10AM-2PM (unconfirmed)
Jason will be conducting a workshop.  
Petroglyph National Monument 


I’ve had several inquiries about workshops so I thought I would post these fantastic set of workshops held by the Spanish Colonial Arts Society  “Arts Alive!” education program.  It is an unbelievable opportunity to learn traditional Spanish Colonial Arts techniques from a Market Artist.  And, the best part, it’s completely FREE to members of the Spanish Colonial Arts Society and a mere Museum Admission charge to non-members!  If you’re interested, I suggest you call or email your reservation in right away.  You could try sending the reservation request by email to info@SpanishColonial.org.  Please let them know DelgadoArts.com sent you!

Arts Alive! free education program
Museum of Spanish Colonial Art
750 Camino Lejo on Museum Hill in Santa Fe
For more information or to reserve your spot: 505-982-2226

John Jimenez“Retablo”  with John Jimenez

Wednesday  |  June 15th, 2011   |  10:00am-2:00pm
I actually took his workshop and he is just wonderful.  Mr. Jimenez has a wonderful flowing style and recently received the Lifetime Achievement Award I believe, for his retablo work.  He is the one who encouraged me to work with natural clays.  It was a whole new world for me.  You can read my blog post on my workshop experience with Mr. Jimenez HERE.

Martha Varoz Ewing Straw Applique“Straw Appliqué” with Martha Varoz Ewing
Wednesday  |  June 22nd, 2011  |  10:00am-2:00pm
Jason and  I will be taking this class!  We are both looking forward to learning a new craft!

“Ramilletes (Paper Garlands)” with Museum Docents
Wednesday  |  June 29th, 2011  |  10:00am-2:00pm
Art Workshop making Ramilletes (Paper Garlands) with Museum Docents in Arts Alive, a free hands-on workshop for all ages.  I will try to make time to take this workshop as well.  I am very curious about this unusual and fleeting revival art.

Cleo Romero Tinsmith“Tinwork” with Cleo Romero
Wednesday  |  July 6th, 2011  |  10:00am-2:00pm
Art Workshop with Tinwork Spanish Market Artist Cleo Romero in Arts Alive, a free hands-on workshop for all ages.  I met Cleo at the artist’s retreat.  She seems very sweet.  That day, she won 3 of the door prizes, so I think of her as “Lucky Cleo.”  Her work is stunning and is very different from the work of the Delgado family.

DelgadoArts.com and Sean Wells y Delgado are not official representatives of the Spanish Colonial Arts Society or the Museum of Spanish Colonial Art.  However, I do contract with them on various projects.  Mainly, I just feel that we have an overlapping mission to promote the Spanish Colonial Arts, so I will be sharing relevant information here.


Silent Auction Tonight 6PM NHCC

May 6, 2011

Tonight is the ABQ Nouveau Retablo silent auction:

Friday | May 06 | 6:00 PM
Domenici Education Center Bld
National Hispanic Cultural Center
1701 4th St SW Albuquerque NM 87102

The auction will feature the Guadalupe retablo in tin that Jason and I collaborated on in episode 13 as well as the work of 90 other artists!  I’ll be there!  Auctions are great places to find some real bargains on unique are created by respected professional artists.  And, of course the funds raised will go to a good cause.  These proceeds will be divided between a scholarship fund under the Hispanic Women’s Council and education programs for the National Hispanic Cultural Center.

We just had some artists come by Tintero and the auction came up.   It turned out the woman had entered a piece as well!  She is a contemporary artist  who shows at a gallery just down the street and had painted a Saint Anthony.  She uses house paints and talked about how she is used to working in a very large scale.  It was inspiring to see how the auction had brought many types of people together to respect the traditional form of retablo painting as an art form.

I’m burning a copy of the episode 13 now and will include a nicely packaged copy with the winning bid so the new owner of “Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe in Tin” will be able to watch us make the piece!


Ornament Workshop & Event Reminders

May 4, 2011

Sean teaching student
Well, Jason and I successfully taught our first workshop together last week!  Jason’s an old pro having taught countless workshops to a range of students.  But, he invited me to tag along to one opportunity to work with special needs teens at West Mesa Community Center.  The teachers visited with Jason at Tintero Workshop & Gallery and knew their kids would enjoy experiencing the making of Spanish Colonial crafts themselves.  We put together several dozen ornament kits and gave a choice of tin or retablos.  I created a custom dove stamp for the occasion and let the students stamp their own ornament and then paint them using my natural pigment kit.  We divided the groups up, introduced ourselves and our respective crafts and then worked a bit with the students to get them going.  It was really a thrill to watch a whole group create from my preassembled kits.  They were so creative, open-minded and positive, it was a real pleasure.

ornament with cross tie using raffiaI forgot to ask permission to post face pics of students here, but I wanted to share this one piece with you (left).  This girl did a wonderful job painting her ornament, but then she took the raffia I had included with the kit to string the ornaments and she told me she made a cross.  I thought that was so clever.  We talked a bit about the symbolism of retablos and I was moved by her depth of understanding at the concept and her original translation.

We had a wonderful afternoon and would love to teach more classes together.  If you would like to discuss a similar group workshop, just drop me a line (505-500-4419)!

EPISODES TO AIR 5/4/2011 WEDNESDAY NIGHT 9PM:  Conveniently, the special collaborative episode showing Jason and I working together to finish the auction piece for the National Hispanic Cultural Center retablo auction will air tonight in Santa Fe Ch16 9PM.  Albuquerque Ch26 9PM will be showing Episode 03 Introduction to pigments and brushes and SAINT RITA.

AUCTION THIS FRIDAY May 6, 2011  6:00 to 8:30pm.  National Hispanic Cultural Center – Pete V. Domenici Education Building.   The NHCC in cooperation with the Hispanic Women’s Council will be holding their annual auction this Friday and will feature the collaborative Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe image in tin that Jason and I created in episode 13.  We will include a copy of the DVD of this episode with the winning auction bid for this piece.  I plan to go early to see the works by other artists.  There are several notable Santeros participating including Charlie Carillo and Arturo Olivas.  I’m looking forward to seeing their pieces.

Finished collaborative Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe in tin frame

copyright ©2011 SWyD

Here’s a shot of the finished piece that Jas and I did.  He added the leaves at the corners.  I enjoyed working on this image with him so much that we may do a larger collaboration of it for market.

Here is the link to the official website for more information on the auction:  www.ABQretablo.com

Jason and I are available for demonstrations and workshops in tandem or individually.


Coat of Arms: Delgado Family Crest

April 30, 2011
Delgado Family Crest

copyright ©2011 Sean Wells y Delgado

[Read more about the Delgado Family Crest origin and symbolism below.]

It was so timely that I viewed parts of the inspiring Royal Wedding on the same day that I intended to write the post for my recently completed Delgado Family Coat of Arms.  In the highlights of the wedding, the various media showed glimpses of the handsome program given out to guests.  As a graphic artist, I was very curious to view the layout and design of such a prominent visual article.  I checked online to see if there were any opportunities to view the program and was so pleased to find our most generous new royal couple had the forethought to share the program free online for all to see!

Click here to visit the official site to download the Official Program from the wedding of Catherine and William

Well, there were some very beautiful layouts.  I love the black and white photo of them.  I love the charming watercolor map of the parade route.  Although, I found the font layouts on most of the rest of the pages quite boring.  But, that’s not really what I wanted to mention here on this blog.  What really moved me to get on my article was the beautiful Coat of Arms layout (pg 25 of the program) that shows the crests of both families with text describing the symbolism.  It’s just wonderful.

The program goes into the clever symbolism shown in both William’s Royal crest and Catherine’s family crest.  I especially loved the playful visual split down the middle of Catherine’s family coat of arms as a pun reference to the name “Middleton.”

After completing the Delgado Family Crest using traditional retablo techniques, I had talked to my husband about the meaning and significance of the imagery to our kids.  I am not a Delgado by name.  My children are not Delgados.  My married name is Wells.  I am a descendant of one of the original Conquistadors, Manuel Delgado, that settled here in New Mexico more than 400 years ago.  But that is not why I honor the name in my retablo work.  I have incorporate the name in my artwork because it was my great-great grandfather  Francisco Delgado who defined himself as a traditional Spanish Colonial Artisan tinsmith and who made the great effort to give that legacy to his children and grandchildren.  Without him and his perseverance, I would not have found this important element of myself.

So, I thought if I am to use this name, I should understand it more fully.  I have been using a generic Delgado crest here and there, but I thought it would really become a part of me if I painted it using my traditional retablo style and techniques.  I researched the name and crest symbolism.  I took my time with the piece and I reworked many areas, especially the text, to get it just right.

It was a wonderful exercise for me to recreate with my own hands
this symbol  that I had used so liberally to date.  It is a part of me now and I am a part of it.  With each step I take to slow down and kneel to the story of that which came before me, I feel enriched, blessed, honored and humbled to be a part of this flow.

And, now I look at this magnificent fairytale couple, beginning their journey into a life people think they would want, (but would probably hate) and I wish them good will in marrying their two disjointed symbols of family together.  And, they can now add their own symbols to a new crest that both honors the past and gives hope to a better future.  And, I will look forward to painting a Wells crest for my family and my children that will merge the traditional Wells crest (which I have yet to research) and perhaps elements of the Delgado crest into a unique and original crest for this generation.

The family name Delgado originates from the Latin word, “delicatus” (the root of the word “delicate”), and refers to the word “thin” or “fine.”

It is so hard for me to associate these meanings with any Delgado I can remember.  For me, “Delgado” conjures up images of war horses and canons, symbols of strength, power, confidence and leadership.  I am coining the word “aggressive creativity” as part of my description of the modus operandi of a Delgado.  The only association I can remotely connect with thoughts of filiment-like structure in the world of Delgado, is their very presence.  There is something about Delgados that is so fleeting and ethereal.  You cannot hold a Delgado in your hand, in your grip.  So slippery and mobile, Delgados are like the valence cloud around the nucleus of an atom–you may only roughly predict where they might go next.

The center shield in blue represents the quality of loyalty in both a personal sense and towards the Royal obligations owed to Spain.  The 7 eight-pointed stars represent the enlightenment of God.  I loved painting these elements and spent a great deal of time shading and shaping them.  I used to draw this exact eight-pointed dimensional star over and over as a child.  maybe this was why–some genetic memory of my family’s connection.  The blood red second shield represents the quality of honor and forthrightness.  The eight cauldrons represent the wealth of the (presumable) lord and perhaps specific number of estates held at the time.  I only own one at the moment, so maybe I should eliminate 7 cauldrons.  Although, technically, our lot is a compilation of two lots, so maybe I could keep two cauldrons.

Detail of stars on Delgado family crest

The outer shield (described as “silver”) is suspected to have been added later and may have been bestowed on the family by the King of Spain for acts of service for country or it may be some element added as part of a nuptial bond.  The Spanish phrase on the outer ring reads “Ave Maria Gratia Plena,” or “Hail Mary Full of Grace.”  Although I’m not sure if it was intentional, I love the balance of the symbolism of the light of God in the center and the love of Mary on the bounding ring.  This “silver” ring is an especially interesting addition to the crest since the tinsmiths were derived from the silversmiths of Spain.  I would have liked to somehow incorporated a hint of our family tin style, but I asked Jason to add a tin frame around the finished board.  I will post a picture of the finished piece after he tins it up!

I did not leave enough room to put the text in the way I had envisioned so I decided to ghost in the covered letters so that the full words could be read.  Although it was a correction, I ended up liking the effect.  I used a font with the thought that the letters should look carved from the material and added highlights using color lifting and shading as needed.  I used a more traditional calligraphic font for the “Delgado” banner.

Delgado calligraphy banner

This piece will be available in the Tintero Gallery in Old Town (as soon as Jason finishes the tin frame) and will soon be available online.  It measures 7″ x 12″ before the tin.  I’ll be offering framed and unframed prints soon as well!


Happy Easter! Decoupage Egg Project

April 19, 2011
Decoupage retablo image of Our Lady of Guadalupe on an egg

Image copyright ©2011 SWyD

MAKE YOUR OWN  I made a short video to show you a simple Easter craft project idea.  I am using a color laser image of my Our Lady of Guadalupe retablo to make a decal that can be applied to real or artificial eggs.  I am providing the sheet for your personal use in the “[09] Patterns” link to the right or click here now.  It’s a really fun project.  You’ll need eggs (wooden, plaster or real), Mod Podge, access to a laser printer, a plate of water and a disposable brush.  You may want an acrylic base coat.  I used gold paint.

If you are downloading the PDF for classroom use, I recommend you watch Episode 13 online to learn more about Our Lady of Guadalupe.  She has a beautiful story.

still from the egg episode


Guadalupe eggs in a basket

Image copyright ©2011 SWyD

OR BUY FINISHED EGGS  The finished eggs are also available in my online store.   I only have a dozen or so.  I have some at Jason’s shop in Old Town, too.  If you haven’t seen it yet, check it out.  It has a fantastic selection of traditional New Mexican arts.  If you’re in Santa Fe, you can find them at Susan’s Christmas Shop off the plaza!

Happy Easter My Friends!


Our Lady of Guadalupe Collaboration

April 13, 2011
Jason and Sean at work

Click on image to watch this episode online!

We just completed shooting the final episode of our premiere Season of our respective shows, New Mexican Santera and New Mexican Tinsmith.  Dad had the excellent idea to do a collaborative piece for the final episode.  I thought it would be a perfect opportunity to share with viewers the dynamic of two artists collaborating.  It was very spontaneous since Jason didn’t even know the size of my board before showing up to shoot the show.  He did a fantastic job quickly responding with a design concept and improvising some design ideas.

Our Lady of Guadalupe in Tin

copyright ©2011 Sean Wells y Delgado & Jason Younis y Delgado

We both have a few finishing touches to add, but you can get a sense of the direction of the finished piece.  Jason came up with a Corona gesture for the top piece that poetically reflects the crown of Mary.  He also added delicate stars around the frame and roses to recall the story of Juan Diego.  I asked him to include thorns on his vine to hint at the crown of thorns that Jesus wore.

We decided to take advantage of the project to use it as our submission for the National Hispanic Cultural Center’s annual Art Auction ABQ Nouveau Retablo 2011.  You can view and bid on this piece and many other traditional and contemporary retablo creations Friday May 6 from 6PM-8:30PM at the National Hispanic Cultural Center Pete V. Domenici Education Building.  Check out www.ABQretablos.com for more information and to view this piece online next week.

What a fun project!  We hope to do more on-air collaborations next season.  But, until then, the local stations will be rerunning our first season Wednesday nights at 9PM Comcast Encantada | Ch26 Albuquerque  | Ch16 Santa Fe.

Now that we have our first season complete, we plan to offer our shows to the other public access channels of the Southwest.  We will update our list when we get some confirmations!

[Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe]
1531 A.D. | Feast Day Dec 12  | Marian Image

A humble local named Juan Diego claimed to have been visited by the Virgin Mary.  The local Bishop requested a sign.  Juan Diego returned (on what is now her Feast Day) with a gift of blooming roses that had appeared in mid winter on the hill where the apparition spoke to him.  He carried the flowers in his cloak and as he spilled them out for the Bishop, the image of the Virgin appeared on his cloak just as Juan Diego had described her.  The Bishop fell to his knees and built a chapel on the hill.  The cloak still hangs today in a shrine on the original hill.  The image has come to represent the worldly love and peace that Mary has to offer, crossing ethnic boundaries.

detail of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Tin

NOTE:  Videotero, LLC, Delgado Arts, New Mexican Santera and New Mexican Tinsmith have no affiliation with The National Hispanic Cultural Center or ABQ Nouveau Retablo.  We are simply using this opportunity to promote an organization that shares the similar goal of preserving the Spanish Colonial Arts.


How To Paint Retablo episodes online now!

April 6, 2011

[If you are viewing in mail or Facebook, please go to original blog post to view images and links]
FREE EPISODES AVAILABLE NOW:  I’ve decided to release the Saint Francis episodes in their entirety so that visitors can get a good sense of a typical show format.  It is one of my favorite retablos and shows.  Dad did a particularly great job editing these.  I also included the last half of the Santa Barbara episode.  It’s another favorite of mine.  To view, under “PAGES,” click on “08 Episode List.”  You’ll find the link to the Saint Francis episodes there.  Ignore the first five seconds where you will see color bars with a tone.  It’s not broken!  We’re working on eliminating those from our Youtube posts.  I’m also working on making a dedicated page for the show information, but so many other things to do, too!  If you get a chance to view the episodes, please send feedback.  Episodes are also available as DVD’s in the online store.

Still image from New Mexican Santrea

click to view Saint Francis part 1

Still image from New Mexican Santera color blocking Saint Francis retablo

click to view Saint Francis part 2

Still image from New Mexican Santera Saint Barbara overhead

click to view Saint Barbara part 2

New Mexican Santera still image

New Mexican Santera still image

DONATE  LINK:  I’ve added a new “Donate” link to the right under “Sean’s Sites.”  I’m hoping to be able to dedicate more time in the coming year to developing content on this site like the Saint Database and profiles of the Delgado family.  Donations would help me do that.  Any contribution is appreciated.

GIFT CERTIFICATE LINK: I’ve also added a gift certificate link so you can now purchase gift certificates that you can then use in the online Delgado Arts store towards anything there including supplies, kits, videos and of course artwork!

TINTERO RELOCATING:  I’m going to do a more complete post on this, but for now, you can check out  Tintero to find out information on my brother’s Gallery & Workshop relocation from the Radisson to Old Town, Albuqueque.  Doors open this Saturday, April 9!  Please come by and say “Hi.”  I will be helping out and may even try some demonstrations if it’s not too crazy!

NEW MEXICAN SANTERA:  The concluding episode on the Saint Michael retablo airs tonight (April 6) on Comcast Encantada TV at 9PM with my brother’s show to follow.

Albuquerque  Channel 26
Santa Fe Channel 16

And…I’ve got an egg-ceptionally cool post that I’m working on for later!…