Why Havalina? Why now Sophia's Divine? Why not?

As an obscure Pixies reference, I decided to call my work "Havalina Illustrations." My Alice logo holds a piglet wearing a bonnet; a reference within a reference to the javelina pigs common in Arizona (a place that has held special significance to me throughout life).

That image will always stick to what I am, though I did decide to ditch the name in favor of something more straightforward. "Illustrations of Sophia Sieber-Davis" is far too boring, so I just rode with Sophia's Divine. I felt edgy at first- over-thinking that some would be turned off by my Divine Sophia parallel. But you know what? I'm still in the process of figuring that out.

"Sophia's Divine Illustrations" also represents the nature of some of my random doodles being strangely prophetic. Uh, this girl is so conceited? Yeah, well, I mean that I often get inspirations of things that end up happening. Kind of like that guy in Heroes only not quite so elaborate. I made my word art piece of The St. Francis prayer a few months before he was voted Pope. (I'm personally not so into Catholicism, but there it is.) A few of these have made it out to share with you all!

There is my reasoning for my name change. What gave me an artistic push in the first place?

Finally being freed from the hospital in 2011, I wanted to do something... significant. Maybe the taste of death offered by months of poison does that to a person. When the last traces finally lift, you're left with an urge to resist the inevitable oblivion. I thought about resuming the traditional life path and becoming a full-time student and transferring to a university, but somehow I felt I had missed the boat. Also, having re-kindled my passion for art during long, boring days of sickness, I knew that life was pulling me in a different direction. Of course I've always been interested in art, loved painting and art history, did a random creative piece here and there, received compliments on my 'vision;' but I had never learned the patience of detailing the shadows on a face, I had never tapped into that part of the brain that offers such tranquility that I discovered the unknown sense of working the proportions into whatever felt right. I found it to be... healing. I still do, suffering from the daily frustrations and hindrances that plague all of us, some more than others. Some days it's a struggle to find that creative place; somedays life gets in the way.. But when I really need the escape offered to me by creativity, I'm pulled back into its realm.

With this new-found inclination to significance, I decided to start a website. More of an online gallery to showcase my art, but lately I've become interested in the blog scene. I envision it as a place to keep my distant friends and family updated (mostly through pictures); to write about things that hold my interest/demand my opinions; and as somewhere to reflect. I'm trying to do this somewhat regularly, but I'll say it requires a higher level of organization than what I'm working with. I have ideas, I have recipes, I have inspiration.. but all takes time that I leave until five minutes before my baby wakes up.

This still leaves the question.. why was I calling my work Havalina? It's the name of one of my favorite songs- by the Pixies- off the album 'Bossanova.' An album that 'sounds as if it were recorded in outer space,' as a friend of mine said, describing its echo-y, almost eerie sound. It's an album that references Area 51, Arizona, New Mexico, lonely highways, lonely cacti, and of course, the wild javelina pigs. The Pixies' style.. is beautiful simplicity, instrumentation and vocals that take what's necessary to paint an image- avoiding the flowery excess often found in writing, painting, and music. Their approach to music is part of what inspires my art. I like to take the details of what I observe, and use my overall impression to relay the message. Now, one could just as well say I'm inspired by impressionism, expressionism, and a number of other artists and musicians who follow a similar path. That's true. But I found 'Havalina' to be a fitting name- besides everything else, I just like the way it sounds.


Here's a link to the song on Youtube, though I must say, you get the true mood if you listen to the whole album through.