Artwork at La Paloma


In a previous post about the bathhouses in Truth or Consequences, NM (, I mentioned enjoying the paintings on the wall of the private room I soaked in at La Paloma. However, I couldn’t get the formatting right to include any of my photos of the murals in the post. I decided to share those photos today because #1 the paintings are nice and #2 I am tired and possibly incapable of writing anything long and thought-provoking.

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When I asked my friend Sue Soaring Sun about these paintings, she told me they were done by Tracy Turner Sheppard. Here’s what Sue said about the paintings on her blog The RV Artsy Life of Sue Soaring Sun (

La Paloma was beautiful last year when I worked there and became even more beautiful while I was gone for the winter.  There are more gardens, some bird feeders, and lucky bamboo plants in every room.  All of the bath house rooms have been replastered and repainted, and a well-known New Mexico artist, Tracy Turner Sheppard, is painting mimbres and mandalas on the walls of each tub room.  Tracy is in town working on this project this week, and I’m delighting in getting to know her.

The next photo shows how the artist took an air vent and turned it into something cute and colorful.

soaked at La Paloma.I think if something functional (and kind of ugly) has to be in a room, living with it is much easier if it can be colorful and cheerful.

I really like how the colors the artist used are somehow both vibrant and subdued. They make me feel energized but not hyper or frantic. (I think “vibrantly subdued” is an oxymoron, but that’s the best way I can think of to describe these colors.  Please leave a comment if you can think of better words to use to describe them.)

SDC10003 - CopyMy favorite thing on the wall was this fat turtle and the decorative squiggles all around it.

This is what the artist says about herself on her website (

As a native of the west, I grew up surrounded by landscapes of astonishing diversity, light and beauty.Coming into the world this way, I developed a great passion for wild places and a love for the infinite ways color and light manifest with form on this earth.
My work is a reflection of that love and seeks to express a magical reality with color as the universal language. I play with its endless variety and vibrancy, translating my own sense of joy and mystery of the physical world onto canvas.

To see more of Tracy Turner Sheppard’s work, go to

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I love the lavender sun and the fat-bellied reptile.

I took all of the photos in this post.

About Blaize Sun

My name is Blaize Sun. Maybe that's the name my family gave me; maybe it's not. In any case, that's the name I'm using here and now. I've been a rubber tramp for nearly a decade.I like to see places I've never seen before, and I like to visit the places I love again and again. For most of my years on the road, my primary residence was my van. For almost half of the time I was a van dweller, I was going it alone. Now I have a little travel trailer parked in a small RV park in a small desert town. I also have a minivan to travel in. When it gets too hot for me in my desert, I get in my minivan and move up in elevation to find cooler temperatures or I house sit in town in a place with air conditioning I was a work camper in a remote National Forest recreation area on a mountain for four seasons. I was a camp host and parking lot attendant for two seasons and wrote a book about my experiences called Confessions of a Work Camper: Tales from the Woods. During the last two seasons as a work camper on that mountain, I was a clerk in a campground store. I'm also a house and pet sitter, and I pick up odd jobs when I can. I'm primarily a writer, but I also create beautiful little collages; hand make hemp jewelry and warm, colorful winter hats; and use my creative and artistic skills to decorate my life and brighten the lives of others. My goal (for my writing and my life) is to be real. I don't like fake, and I don't want to share fake. I want to share my authentic thoughts and feelings. I want to give others space and permission to share their authentic selves. Sometimes I think the best way to support others is to leave them alone and allow them to be. I am more than just a rubber tramp artist. I'm fat. I'm funny. I'm flawed. I try to be kind. I'm often grouchy. I am awed by the stars in the dark desert night. I hope my writing moves people. If my writing makes someone laugh or cry or feel angry or happy or troubled or comforted, I have done my job. If my writing makes someone think and question and try a little harder, I've done my job. If my writing opens a door for someone, changes a life, I have done my job well. I hope you enjoy my blog posts, my word and pictures, the work I've done to express myself in a way others will understand. I hope you appreciate the time and energy I put into each post. I hope you will click the like button each time you like what you have read. I hope you will share posts with the people in your life. I hope you'll leave a comment and share your authentic self with me and this blog's other readers. Thank you for reading.  A writer without readers is very sad indeed.

7 Responses »

    • Maybe New England doesn’t have color because color is frivolous and the angry Puritan God doesn’t like frivolous.

      Or maybe New England once did have color, but it’s all faded away with time and age.

      Or maybe the colorful leaves in the fall is all the color New England can handle.

      Just some ideas…

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