Blog: Jersey City

Summit Mansion Mini – Painting

This little painting already found a loving home and I am so excited about it.

It makes me really happy to know that my Stroll Through the Hoods paintings do resonate with you and there are other architecture lovers out there :)

Now when I walk by the house I will think “someone else likes you so much – you are now part of a different home in a different state as well” – I like that thought.

I hope you are all doing well- please stay safe and healthy!

Comments (2)

  • Jeanne

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    I am so pleased and joyful with “my” paintings. I have been a quilter for 30 yrs and given away most of the quilts or wall hangings. I share your feeling of a bit of sadness when they leave the nest, some are really hard to let go. Now a days I only make quilts for those I know will truly appreciate them and I am keeping many more for myself! Thank you again for you inspirational work that brings joy to our house.

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  • Deborah Pierro

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    Nat–I love your building paintings. That is truly your niche!
    p.s. Don’t forget to change your copyright on your website to 2006-2020!

    Reply

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Stroll Through the Hood – March 2020

Strolls through my hood get me out of my studio, they help me get unstuck and often I get inspired by what I see and get new ideas to create something. It is part of my philosophy about Artful Adventures in Mixed Media – which is the subject of my book. Here are some photos that I gathered in the last couple weeks.

Well a lot of those photos were taken before we all were practicing social distancing. And the more these inspire me – a good reminder to enjoy the little things like meeting with friends in a cafe or a stroll through the hood. Speaking of a cafe – I love the “fence art” by Norman Kirby above that made its way into this new-ish restaurant.

St. John’s Church – a gorgeous gorgeous historic landmark church – which is falling apart. I am reading a lot about this church and it’s history in this neighborhood. I will def. write a separate post about it – it is so fascinating and I will def. do a painting of this church.

This made me smile. Bentley Avenue also has the nickname of “Doctor’s Row” – there are a ton of beautiful victorian Mansions on this street and they have become unaffordable in the recent years (if you find one you could buy you would have to pay a ton of money to bring it back to livable status) – so this tiny Bentley house is pretty much all we could afford hahahah

Speaking of Social Distancing- those guys have no clue and boy they are soo cute. Here is Bobby Pretzel on his foster blanket on my letterpress- he loves that spot.

While Mingus loves to perch on the Banister – he is such a riot.

Speaking of beautiful churches- I can not believe that I was never before in Grace Church downtown – I lived there for 6 years and somehow never made it in until now when a friend of mine was singing there. So colorful!

Another row of beautiful brownstones – I love the balcony on the left!

This former victorian mansion looks really sad

I wonder if the scaffolding means restoration or stripping it down from it’s last architectural elements. I would be surprised if that house could be saved but you never know.

I loooooveee this building – I am not sure yet what used to be in there back in the golden days- but it is sooo cute. It has been abandoned for a long time – I hope someone buys it and revives it. A friend of mine who is actually a real estate agent said that a lot of those abandoned buildings in the neighborhood have been bought a long time ago by investors and they are now waiting for the perfect timing to sell those for a hefty price. It makes me angry as to what this does to this neighborhood.

A little bit of a sad Hope sign but at least hope :)

This beautiful house was once built by one of the richest men in Jersey City in 1860 – he died impoverished and the building is now an apartment building. Some of you might recognize it in one of my paintings ;)

Same street- more gorgeous apartment buildings!

These are Dutch Queen Anne Houses Row Houses. And yes that is a style as well – and reminds me indeed of Amsterdam.

and this little street with the small town brick townhouses makes me just happy- it is super cute and I cannot wait for the trees to be in bloom.

Hope you enjoyed the Stroll through my Hood! Hope you are all well and stay safe and healthy! Loves!


Join me today, March 27th at 2pm EST for a LIVE chat on Facebook – Let’s catch up and see how everyone is doing!

Comments (1)

  • Jean Goza

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    Always enjoy your photos from the hood. I love the architecture of that area. So very different from my home state of California. I did live in New Jersey for awhile many years ago. Was fascinated by it then as well. Stay well and sane during this difficult time.

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Neo Greek to Me Mini – Painting

This Mini Painting on canvas board called “Mini Greek to Me” already found a loving home – but I would still like to share :)

I love this row of 5 Neo Greek style brownstones in my neighborhood.

Every time I pass them I see some other detail that intrigues me and the more I research the different styles of Brownstones the more I can categorize them.

My new routine is to first sketch and work on the building in my art journal – and then I paint it on a small and bigger canvas at the same time and last I add it to a huge ledger from 1840 which I want to fill with all those buildings and I call it the Stroll Through the Hood Ledger. I will share some pix or a little video with you some time later this year.

I have a lot of fun with those paintings. As said this one found a home – basically the moment I said I finished it on Instagram- if you want to check out my other paintings- head on over to the store. I always love heading to the post office and send a painting out …also because I pass those Neo Greek houses on the way ;) 

Comments (1)

  • Sue Clarke

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    Lovely! Mine is already hung up in the hallway!

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Yas Queen Mini Painting

This year I really found my groove to make sure to paint every morning before I do anything else -and slowly I am getting around the hood as I am painting scenes from my strolls from the hood.

Yas Queen Mini” is an original painting made with spray paint, acrylic paint, gouache, and markers on canvas board. I am usually starting out with a study of the scene in my art journal and then create one small painting on canvas board and a slightly bigger one on canvas and last but not least also add a version of the painting to a big old ledger (I will show you a glimpse of it once it filled up a bit more) .

As I said, I was inspired by my Strolls through the Hood in Jersey City for this little mixed media painting, and specifically a magnificent Queen Anne style mansion that I often stroll by. I am really fascinated by the over-the-top style of architecture and it is sad that the house is slowly dilapidating.

Yas Queen Mini is now available in the store and would love to find a new home! 

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Block Party Painting

Block Party is a different take on a painting of this building and is inspired by my strolls through the hood. It is part also of my neighborhood series.

I created it with spray paint, markers, ink, and acrylic paint on canvas. You will often see the combination of classic row house architecture and a colorful contemporary mural in our city and I am big fan of that.

In this scene the mural depicts a festive block party, you can almost hear the old skool hip hop (maybe Sugarhill Gang’s Rapper’s Delight?) and get a feel for the vibe.

 I carried this energy throughout the piece in the bright colors and rhythmic patterns in the background.

“Block Party” is an original painting on canvas and measures 10″x8″ -It is available in the store and would love to find a new home.

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Block Party Mini Painting

Block Party Mini is another painting inspired by my strolls through the hood and is part of my neighborhood series. ⁠I am having so much fun with this series and also really enjoy making multiple versions on different substrates.

The combination of classic row house architecture and a colorful contemporary mural is something that is not uncommon in this city – and I am a fan of it. In this scene a wonderful mural by @zoonchez (on instagram) depicts a festive block party, you can almost hear the old skool hip hop (maybe Sugarhill Gang’s Rapper’s Delight?) and get a feel for the vibe.

There will be a dessert place coming soon in the storefront and boy I cannot wait :)


“Block Party Mini” is an original painting made with spray paint, markers, acrylic paint, gouache, and stencils on canvas board and measures 8″x8″ and available now in my store! EDITED: SOLD

Comments (2)

  • Sue Clarke

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    Love it Nat and could you please stop selling out of your minis so quickly! ;-)

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Good Vibes Only Mini Painting

Here is the mini version of my Good Vibes Only painting I showed you a couple days earlier.

I was inspired by my Strolls through the Hood in Jersey City for this little mixed media painting. The classic brick apartment facade is given energy and life with a series of colorful murals – something that is common in my hood where a renaissance of development and hope is happening. That energy is also reflected in the sky and ground – with layers of buzzing pattern.

Good Vibes Only Mini” is an original painting made with spray paint, markers, acrylic paint, gouache, and stencils on canvas board and measures 8″x8″ and available now :)

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Stroll Through the Hood – February 2020

Strolls through my hood get me out of my studio, they help me get unstuck and often I get inspired by what I see and get new ideas to create something. It is part of my philosophy about Artful Adventures in Mixed Media – which is the subject of my book. Here are some photos that I gathered in the last couple weeks.

This furniture store has been having “last sale” ever since I moved here 6 1/2 years ago-but now that they sell these paintings it looks real. LOL. I am amazed by the amount of stock of this painting and have even thought of buying one …could be a good surface and the frame is fun :)

our secret beach – clear statement- we do not need a bigger golf course for the people that can afford half a million dollars annually for their membership here.

What we need are rusty boxes that make our phantasy spin …hahah- I love this one it looks like a face sticking out it’s tongue.

It is just so beautiful out here- I really love coming to Liberty State park with my bike-

I love these red thingies (no idea what they are actually called)

I had some wallpaper made with my fan designs – which I really love. The one on top is at the entrance wall to my studio

And this one is one a wall in my studio bathroom – We didn’t renovate the bathrooms yet – that has to wait for some other time when we are recovered from our initial renovation but this was a cheapish way to oomph it up for now a little bit.

I am so happy to see this house in my neighborhood being renovated- This house was on the market many years ago and it was in the saddest state you can imagine ( I am sure i snapped a picture but couldn’t find it) and now it is back to it’s glory!!

Love the beautiful ceilings you find all over the neighborhood stores.

Fun Mural with cat :)

Hope you enjoyed this little stroll – let’s see what I discover for next month :)

Comments (10)

  • Marsha

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    I love your strolls through the hood! They seem so much more interesting than strolls through my hood. Which probably isn’t true. And, I do miss taking random photos. I should probably take this as a cue to pick it up again! <3

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    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      yes- I would love to see your strolls through the hood!!!

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  • Cathy

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    I love your strolls through the neighborhood! Thanks for sharing all the interesting things that catch your eye.

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  • Caroline Mach

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    The “red thingies” are the “fruit” of staghorn sumac – it is very common in southern Ontario where I live.

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      Oh thank you so much Caroline- Now I learned something!!!

      Reply

  • ARHuelsenbeck

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    When I was growing up, I went to Catholic school, and almost all the families had The Last Supper in their dining rooms.

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      I remember my grandmother in Italy having one up too in her bedroom. But Dining Room makes perfect sense!

      Reply

  • Robin Seiz

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    I love the gratefulness you feel for the little things.

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    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      Awe- thank you Robin – I think I have always felt that it makes life just go easier if you embrace the little good things :)

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Good Vibes Only Painting

This painting is inspired by my strolls through the hood. 

The back of this brick apartment building has this gorgeous colorful Mural by Zeh Palito – He called it Good Vibes Only and that is exactly what this mural oozes into the neighborhood.

The painting was created with spray paint, markers, acrylic paint, gouache, and stencils on canvas. and measures 10″x10″ on extra deep 1.5″ canvas. It is available for sale now here.

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