Month: April 2016

#MiniMasterpieceMonday: Purple Reign

Title:  “Purple Reign” •  Size 5″ x 7″ • Mixed media: acrylic, record album, canvas

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The thing about minimalist painting is that it’s deceptive.  This artwork, at first glance, just looks like 2 slices of purple, a slice of orange and piece of an old record album cover.  And to explain what it really means… well, this is where I will sound a little dreamy, but art, made from the heart and mind IS dreamy, so here’s the back story…

This past week Prince died and it was shocking and tragic to lose such a music icon, especially at his age.  So, when I sat down and started drawing out this week’s painting, I felt compelled to create a piece of art as an homage to Prince, but not in a obvious or pandering way.

So, this is what came out… the shapes represent beams of light, the two shades of purple represent his faceted personality and the orange represents his movement towards the “light” -both in his art and in his passing.  The piece “Stereo” is cut from a 1950’s classical record album and is my way of communicating that music is a continuum which transcends time.  I also covered the back of the canvas in a vintage record album sleeve, but you can draw your own conclusions about that…

RIP Prince • thank you for your unique, thoughtful music and groovy soul.

#MiniMasterpieceMonday: This is Real

Title:  This Is Real,  Size 7.25″ x 7.25″

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This week’s mini painting is based on creating a 45 record sleeve, painted in a vintage comic style.  I used Liquitex acrylic paint on canvas paper, cut to 7″x7″ and the piece includes a vintage 45 slipped behind the painting.

The 45 record’s title is meant to stand in as the “thought bubble” of the female character.  Bonus that it has an old price sticker on it, vintage comic books always had their price printed on the cover.

Mock LP Cover: Oahu without you

"Oahu without you," a mock record album cover by Vena Paylo

Through the magical powers of Photoshop, I’ve mashed up a vintage Hawaiian travel poster, text and grunge…and the result is an imagined record album cover I’ve entitled “Oahu without you.”

As soon as I thought of the album name I was surprised this album didn’t exist already.  This “record” would have all the uke, vibes and sway of typical vintage Polynesian music, but the tracks would all be sad and lonely ballads about being in a tropical paradise without the one you love.  Ironically, it would sound a lot like side one of The Polynesians “Hawaiian Wedding Song.

Once the sea salty tears have dried the next album needs to have more of a “take this paradise and shove it” attitude.


#MiniMasterpieceMonday: Rhythm-A-Ning

Title:  Rhythm-A-Ning, Size 6″ X 6″

To purchase or see more music-infused artwork visit 

This is the 2nd installment of my new Mini Masterpiece Monday series!

The abstract organic shape is hand painted with acrylics on stretched canvas. It is painted in two grays and highlighted by multi-color fine edges.   The style is mid century and sculptural in form.  The canvas is stretched around the edges so it can be hung without a frame.

See more of my music-infused artwork at

I used the title from a Thelonious Monk song, it’s a nod the shape’s abstract, yet cohesive, form, punctuated by lively colors.  Check out this video of Monk playing the song.

Progress Report: Gray Area

Working on my next #MiniMasterpieceMonday painting. I’m using acrylics on canvas, size is 6″x6.”  

I am making this piece as a way to practice painting abstracts. The freedom to create an organic shape makes me giddy -it’s a stream of consciousness type of exercise. 

Final painting will be posted April 11th. 



#MiniMasterpieceMonday: Vamos Pa La Rumba

This is the first installment of my new Mini Masterpiece Monday series!

Title: “Vamos Pa La Rumba” • Size 6″ X 6″

To purchase or see more artwork visit

The teal background is hand painted with acrylics on stretched canvas. It features a square piece cut from a vintage record album cover and polka dots are cut from a vintage record album sleeve. Canvas is painted around the edge and can be hung without a frame.

I salvage damaged record album covers and sleeves and incorporate them into fine art pieces, giving them a new life.

See more of my music-infused artwork at


Record Spotlight: Chet Baker

I have collection of 27 assorted vintage 10″ jazz records that I inherited from my dad, Ken Paylo.  The artwork and size of the albums is so lovely that I decided to document them.  My dad passed away in May of 2010 and I miss him dearly -posting this collection of records is a way to remember him and also share these little beauties with other record collectors and fans of Mid Century design.  Cheers 🙂

Title:  Chet Baker Ensemble compositions and arrangements by Jack Montrose • Date:  1954 • Label: Pacific Jazz Records (Hollywood, CA) • Cover Design & Photo: William Claxton (the king of jazz photography!)

   chet baker ensemble 10 inch record