Thoughts, processes and other interesting things that come from working as a designer and artist.

Pursue the Sacred Heart of Jesus [Painting]
Pursue the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Pursue the Sacred Heart of Jesus [Painting]

Even though I was raised Roman Catholic, I didn’t really know and love Jesus until I had a personal conversion as a teen. Before then, it was just ritual and habitual tradition without meaning. It wasn’t until I encountered the True Presence and reality of our Lord that my eyes were opened, and I found meaning in the beauty and richness of the Church that our Lord gave us as a essential gift. It was then that I realized it was all about this Love that burns deep in the heart of Jesus for me and for all of us.

I have always been fascinated by the popular image of Jesus and His Most Sacred Heart. It is a vivid reminder  of a reality that Jesus is truly man and truly God. His humanity is such a concrete reality that his body has a real, physical heart that was once pierced and stopped beating upon the cross. This same heart that was gloriously brought back to life in His Resurrection, and is still alive since His ascension into Heaven.

Pursue the Sacred Heart of Jesus

During Holy Week of this year, I finished this latest painting of the Sacred Heart. I enjoy painting traditional images of the faith because everyone always has their own perspective, technique, and style to add. There are artists that don’t believe that, but I think that doubts their own uniqueness as created by God.

I painted this to focus on the heart itself. Many of the most popular versions of this image often focus on his eyes, but I wanted this version to center around the heart and His burning love. It was painted on a square canvas to also help narrow the focus.

On a personal note, once completed, a priest that has become a good friend of mine blessed the image using the older prayers for images of our Lord in Eastertide. It also became the first piece I painted and that I still own that is blessed. This prevents me from being able to ever sell the image, and I’m ok with that.


The Devotion

The Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus is celebrated 19 days after the celebration of Pentecost. This always falls on the Friday after the celebration of Corpus Christi, and is according to the desires of Jesus expressed in the visions of St Margret Mary.

Learn more about the Devotion to the Sacred Heart at

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Saint Joseph the Worker [Painting]
St Joseph the Worker-detail

Saint Joseph the Worker [Painting]

St Joseph the WorkerI often wonder what St. Joseph had to say. At first, I found it somewhat sad that one of the three members of the Holy Family never had any of his words recorded, but after some time, I grew to appreciate how much he had to say through what we know of his life and actions.

There is a very limited amount of information that the tradition of the church reveals to us about the foster father of Jesus, but we do know that he was a very good, holy man and that he spent most of his life working as a carpenter.

I have a very high admiration for this very mysterious man that has such a large role in the lives of Jesus and Mary. Even though I have a high respect for Saint Joseph, I’ve had a very hard time relating to him on a spiritual level. Having our Lord and the Mother of God in your house would make it difficult not to live in holiness.

As with many of my religious works, I make them as an expression of my own desire to encounter the subject deeper in prayer. I painted this because I want to get to know his story better and learn to imitate his fidelity to Our Lord.

There is also much to be said about St. Joseph’s work ethic. The church thinks so highly of it that we celebrate a memorial of St. Joseph as a worker for greater encouragement of the faithful. It reminds us that there is dignity in the work we do to provide for our families, as St. Joseph’s work provided for his family.

“Now this holiness (of Jesus) became a reality in the most ordinary circumstances of life, those of work, of the family and the social life of a village, and this is an emphatic affirmation of the fact that the most obscure and humdrum human activities are entirely compatible with the perfection of the Son of God….this mystery involves the conviction that the evangelical holiness proper to a child of God is possible in the ordinary circumstances of someone who is poor and obliged to work for his living.”

– René Voillaume, Brothers of Men

I am grateful for the opportunity to be a creative professional, but sometimes I find it difficult to let my faith penetrate my work in secular design. When I think about him, I often think to myself, “I’m no Saint Joseph.” Even still, meditating upon this painting helps me remember that I can count on his powerful prayers of intercession and learn from his humility and obedience.


A Prayer to St. Joseph the Worker

O Glorious St. Joseph, model of all those who are devoted to labor, obtain for me the grace to work conscientiously, putting the call of duty above my natural inclinations, to work with gratitude and joy, in a spirit of penance for the remission of my sins, considering it an honor to employ and develop by means of labor the gifts received from God, to work with order, peace, moderation and patience, without ever shrinking from weariness and difficulties, to work above all with purity of intention and detachment from self, having always death before my eyes and the account that I must render of time lost, of talents wasted, of good omitted, of vain complacency in success, so fatal to the work of God.

All for Jesus, all through Mary, all after thine example, O Patriarch, St. Joseph. Such shall be my watch-word in life and in death.


– Composed by St. Pius X


Saint Joseph, Ora Pro Nobis


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C.S. Lewis Conference, The Brilliance, and My Paintings

C.S. Lewis Conference, The Brilliance, and My Paintings

The Hill Country Institute will be hosting a conference on C.S. Lewis in San Antonio this weekend. The conference, entitled C.S. Lewis and the Divine Presence: Living the Mystery of the Indwelling God, will be held at Trinity University on April 13, 2013 9AM-9PM.


As a big fan of C.S. Lewis, I’m very excited about this conference and learning from some of the great speakers. It’s always a joy for me to participate in ecumenical gatherings, especially around the concepts and ideas of such a great man.

Learn more or buy tickets for the conference.

The Brilliance Concert

The day will end with a concert by The Brilliance at 7PM.

The Brilliance

I’ve been talking about this band for a while. True creative artist making some of the best contemporary music to praise our Lord. If you aren’t able to make it to the whole conference, make it out to see them while they are in the area.

Art Exhibit

I am honored to have been invited to show some of paintings as well. I’m very excited because it will be the first time that the entire series of my angel paintings will be together in one place since they were finished. I will also have a few other paintings to share.

If you’re going to the conference of the concert, please stop by, visit my exhibit, and I would love to meet you.

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SXSW Interactive 2013 Catholic Event

SXSW Interactive 2013 Catholic Event

There’s a myriad of reasons why I love living in Austin, but one of my favorites it the great willingness to try new things and take actions with new ideas. This great ingenuity and creativity fosters a community of collaboration and collective growth.

Even though Austin has a reputation of being a very liberal city, the Church in Austin is in a new spring time. What better place to embrace the New Evangelization than joining in the spirit of South by Southwest Interactive, one of the largest digital conferences in the country here in our own city. This festival is also known for some wild times, and it provides a great venue and opportunity to speak to the culture.

The afternoon will be full of great presentations and panels to learn, share, and collaborate. It promises to be a great time. I will be on one of the panels and designed the flyer, so it is obvious I am very invested in this event, and I hope to see you there.

Tuesday March 12, 2013 1-6PM at St Mary’s Cathedral – Bishops Hall
910 San Jacinto Blvd, Austin, TX 78701

This event is FREE and open to everyone (no badges required). Come to one or to all.


Check out more information at the AustinCNM website and check out the Facebook event. I hope to see you there.

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Standing While I Work
Standing Desk

Standing While I Work

For generations, the average office job required that we sit down for most of the day. As the culture has become more dependent upon technology, man has had to put less effort into his job and many of us spend what is considered a sedentary lifestyle.

I find this very depressing. Man was not created to be caged up sitting staring at screens and pushing buttons. It used to seemed so sad to think the George Jetson could be so exhausted after a long days work of pushing buttons. Thinking about it now, I can relate to him. A long day at the office can leave you feeling exhausted even if the work wasn’t very laborious.

I’m not originally from the city. I grew up in the country and know what hard work really means. I know how it feels to be  physically exhausted from a long day of near-back-breaking work.

I remember the times when every minute of the work seemed to be slower than the last, and was inspired to get an education to never have to depend on work like that again.

I love the blessing to be able to be a creative professional and have the opportunity to create and come up with new ideas every day. Although I’m left wondering if there’s a way to get a better balance of the physical back into my daily work.

The Dangers of Inactivity

Even if you spend some time regularly exercising, the majority of our lives can be wasted sitting. There is a largely disproportionate time spent sitting, sleeping, and not moving as compared to physical activity. This increases many health problems because God did not create us to be so inactive. I recommend reading and listening to this article on NPR.

It’s possible to help counteract it by taking routine breaks and sneaking in more regular activity. For me, this is difficult because good ideas don’t always come at a constant flow, so I stay focused to try and execute it before it’s lost and I have to move on to something else. I was stuck at my desk the whole day and even if I got in a good run or workout in the day, it was only a small drop in the bucket against the time I spent inactive.

My Transition To A Standing Desk

After reading many terrifying articles about the dangers of sitting all day at a desk, I looked into a solution that had been growing in popularity with the creative community – a standing desk.

After weeks of research I had come up with a strong plan to approach my boss with the idea. At first, people seemed very surprised at the very idea. They often asked, “are you really going to stand all day?” I would respond with my argument that it’s a much better idea than sitting all day.

Even though I have my own office, people would stop by for months after just to ask me whether or not I ever sit down and then why I did it. The idea caught on to a few other people in the building, but they do alternate their time sitting and standing. I sit for my lunch and on my drive to and from work and it’s enough.

Standing all day brings a new liberation not only for my formerly constricted blood vessels and muscles, but it was new freedom for my creativity. I understand why the creative community is one that embraced it so quickly.

While I am already standing, it’s easy to walk around and think out solutions. My work has also improved and my work efficiency has increased. I would say there is an overall general improvement in my entire work ethic.

Yes, I am a little tired at the end of the day, but it’s a much better tired feeling than it was before.

Converting Workstations

If you’ve considered converting to working while standing, I highly recommend it for anyone that is physically capable. If you feel that you can’t handle the whole day, get a stool that will allow you to transition in between standing and sitting at different times. I had to do this temporarily for a few weeks after I got a knee injury from a workout.

If you are going to go all in and do standing only, I highly recommend getting an anti-fatigue standing mat. I tried this after a few months and it really makes a big difference. I also suggest trying good shoes. It will help your feet, knees, and back in the long run.

When looking at what to buy for you own desk, I recommend trying first to try and hack together a solution for a fraction of the price of a pre-built standing desk. If your main workstation is in a cubicle, those are often the easiest desks to convert because they have notches that can be raised with little effort. If you have a close workstation with your co-workers, I recommend reading  this article from LifeHacker.

Once you convert over to standing, ergonomics is just as important as it is while sitting. If not carried out properly, there can be some health risks to standing all day too.

My personal desk is still a sitting station, but the balance works great for me. It’s now been almost 15 months since I converted, and I hope I never have to go back to sitting all day again.

Standing Desk

My Current Standing Desk

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Progress in Ministry Online

One of my favorite current responsibilities is being the communications coordinator for WilCoYA Ministry. It is a young adult ministry that unites Catholics from the diocese of Austin, mainly from the North Austin and Williamson county area. We launched a new look for last week, and I am very happy with the outcome.

Our ministry is of a modest size, but our audience is many times larger than our actual members. We are able to have a strong presence online to not only show what we are doing as a group in our ministry, but we are also able to feature important and relevant information and news about our Catholic Christian faith. Combining the two makes for a great witness of how our generations can take Truth and live it as an active Christian community.

I enjoy designing the monthly promotional material more than almost any other projects that I work on. For the  generations of today, the internet exists as a primary form of communication and discovery. Without a solid platform and appealing design, it would not be effective.

Look for more Catholic new media projects to be released in February 2011. Super exciting times! I’ld be happy to hear any feedback and constructive criticism.

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New Look for Emmaus

Recently, we launched a new look for The complete online redesign is not 100% finished, but the majority has gone live.

The most fun part of this redesign was the photography. Emmaus was in Austin at the beginning of the summer to perform for a praise and worship night, and I took the opportunity of doing a fast photo shoot with the band. Photography in a mid day sun can be very tricky, but I took the only opportunity that I had. I am fairly happy with the outcome of the photos, and hope it captures their character. Check out their site for new photos soon, and be sure to check out their music.

One of the reasons this was one of my favorite recent projects is because I really believe in them. Emmaus represents the voice of a new generation of worship leaders. Their performances are as familiar as Matt Maher’s music, and have the power to move souls like Hillsong’s worship. Their music needs to be heard by the restless souls of our generation. May God bless them on their journey.

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Site Redesign

This week I launched the latest version of and this blog.

New Features

  • Cross browser compatibility and flash is no longer necessary
  • 1 main page presenting all valuable information
  • Expanded services
  • Featured projects recently completed
  • Prominent location for social media profiles
  • Live content feed from facebook page and twitter
  • Widget to help visitors call me from my site
  • Mobile version of blog and galleries

Until now, my new blog was not publicly linked or posted anywhere. I’m very excited that it can now be more easily accessed. Originally, I was very hesitant to link my profiles and blog to my website, but then I realized that it’s not worth trying to hide on the internet anyways. I am who I am. My main employer and clients understand that my personal views do no interfere with my professionalism. I am excited for this next step as a creative that can fully embrace who I am.

Check it out, tell people you know and leave me feedback. I’ld love to hear what you think of the redesign and the new direction.

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A Days Work

On select days, I’ve been trying this application that tracks all of my mouse movements and clicks. This is from the mac laptop I use at my main job. The main monitor is a 27″ widescreen and my 17″ Macbook Pro to the right of it. Tracking all of this data does not really provide any value or insight that is really important to me, but it is amazing that working on other projects creates a work of art on its own.

When I design information graphics, I spend a lot of time analyzing the data that needs to be communicated. The data collected here is only visual and can be analyzed while collected. It also just looks neat.

This image is from only 1 8 hour day designing and doing my regular work. My main applications are Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Flash, Illustrator, Acrobat, Firefox, TweetDeck and Entourage. I will post a gallery of the best ones soon.

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