Friday, October 9, 2015

Purple Purse Campaign

Help me raise a donation to the Purple Purse Campaign for the YWCA of Kauai by purchasing one of my five original paintings featured here by October 12, 2015. I will be donating 50% of the sales directly to this campaign. The purpose of this fundraiser is to raise funds for the YWCA of Kauai to help identify financial abuse as a key barrier to ending domestic violence.

These five paintings were chosen as part of the "purple" theme. Mahalo for your support
 Exotic Orchids of Kauai - Original Watercolor 9"x12" $119 USD
 Purple Peacock - Original Reverse Acrylics on Plexiglass 12"x12" $200 USD
 Petrina's Hibiscus - Original Watercolor 9"x12" $119 USD
 Aloha Forever - Original Acrylic Painting on Canvas 16"x20" $375 USD
 Liliko'i - Original Reverse Acrylics on Plexiglass 12"x12" SOLD

Mahalo to Susan for purchasing "Liliko'i" and for helping me make a donation to the YWCA of Kauai for the Purple Purse Campaign!!!

Saturday, September 26, 2015

2016 Kauai Art Calendar by Marionette Taboniar

My 2016 New Calendar is out!  It is called "My Favorite Places on Kaua'i" and features 12 of my newest landscape paintings.

landscapes of Kauai Hawaii calendar Hawaiian Art
 This is the cover of the calendar which shows all 12 images used inside.

Along with all of the regular holidays, I have included three Hawaiian holidays: Prince Kuhio Day, King Kamehameha Day, and Statehood Day.  I ordered these through Vistaprint and they turned out really nice. I love the satin paper stock it is printed on and they measure 8.5" x 11" closed and 11" x 17" fully opened.  Plus, each calendar is personally signed on the back by the artist with, "Aloha from Kauai, Marionette".

If you would like to purchase, they are available at my Ebay store at 2016-Kauai-Art-Calendar-by-Marionette-Taboniar-NEW-.  They are available for $27 each and includes Free First Class shipping to the U.S.   If you live outside of the U.S. and would like to order one, please send me an email at so I can give you a better estimate of shipping charges.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Kauai Fine Art Originals by Marionette

Here are some of my newly listed original acrylic paintings and original watercolors for you to enjoy!
 "Brennecke's Beach" Original Watercolor Painting 9"x12" $119 USD
 "Hanapepe Town 2" Original Watercolor Painting 9"x12" $119 USD
 "Hanapepe Town 3" Original Acrylic Painting 11"x14" $250 USD
 "Kauai Orchid Festival 2" Original Watercolor Painting 9"x12" $119 USD
 "Ke'e Beach 2" Original Watercolor Painting 9"x12" $119 USD
 "Ke'e Beach 3" Original Acrylic Painting 11"x14" $250 USD
 "Polihale Waves 4" Original Acrylic Painting 11"x14" $250 USD
 "Shocking Pink Hibiscus" Original Acrylic Painting 11"x14" $250 USD
 "Turtle at Poipu Beach 7" Original Watercolor Painting 9"x12" $119 USD
"Zen Lotus" Original Watercolor Painting 9"x12" $119 USD

For more of my original paintings, hand painted silk scarves and fine art prints, please visit my Etsy Shop at .  Mahalo and Aloha!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Original Hand Painted Silk Scarves by Marionette 
"Honu" Hand Painted Silk Scarf (close up)
 "Pink Hibiscus" Hand Painted Silk Scarf (close up)
 "Mangoes" Hand Painted Silk Scarf (close up)
 "Sea Turtle" Hand Painted Silk Scarf (close up)

My hand painted silk scarves are now available through my Etsy Gallery . Each one of a kind silk creation measures approximately 30"x30" and is painted in my Kauai, Hawaii studio on an 8mm Habotai scarf, which is also known as "China Silk". It is very lightweight and breezy and fun to wear.  I paint using Dye-Na-Flow silk fabric paints, and the design outline is painted with an acrylic fabric paint.  The background has a fun pattern created by adding Hawaiian sea salt to the paint as it dries.

Caring for your new scarf: Just wash your scarf in the sink with a little Woolite or similar, rinse in cold water, hang to dry, and iron on the back side using the silk setting on your iron.

Want me to make you a custom design in the colors of your choice? I can also custom paint a silk scarf just for you. Just send me a note, and I will be happy to work with you!

Each silk scarf sells for $50 USD plus shipping.  To view my entire line of silks please visit: .

I also teach silk painting in my Kauai studio, Painting Paradise.  To view my art class schedule, please visit: .  If you don't see a class scheduled during your visit, please contact me to set up a private lesson. 

Aloha and Mahalo,

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Aunty Liliko'i and Marionette Join Forces on a Special Project

 Joe, Marionette, Lori, and Tony in front of Marionette's watercolor painting, Na Pua Liliko'i

Back when I first opened my business, Painting Paradise, over ten years ago, I joined the Kauai Made program especially to meet and network with the local business people of Kauai.  While attending one of their trade shows, I met Lori Cardenas, also known as Aunty Liliko'i, and have looked up to her as one of the most successful business women in Kauai and especially in the town of Waimea where we are both located.  Over the years I have seen her business grow and have been in awe as her products continue to win local, national, and worldwide awards.

At one of our events, I went over to Lori's booth and gave her a gift of one of my matted prints of a liliko'i (passion fruit) flower I did years ago.  It was later on I discovered that she framed it and proudly hung it in her store right up front by the register.  Thus, I found out she was also a fan of my work as well.

Earlier this year, I received an interesting phone call from Lori.  She wanted to collaborate on a project involving a t-shirt design of a liliko'i flower to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Aunty Liliko'i brand.  She wanted me to create a custom watercolor painting for the design based on photographs taken by her husband and business partner, Tony Cardenas.

 Na Pua Liliko'i Original Watercolor by Marionette

We had several meetings to discuss the design and it's progress, and this is when I really got to know Lori and Tony on a more personal level.  We talked story about business, personal interests, computers, and food, which is a very important topic here on the island of Kauai.  We shared recipe ideas, and I even brought them some of Joe's pasteles to try, which they loved.  After discussing Aunty Lilikoi's Passion Fruit Wasabi Mustard, I went home and made deviled eggs using Lori's recipe and they turned out so ono (a Hawaiian word for delicious).  If you haven't tried her passion fruit wasabi mustard, you should!  It's one of her most popular products.

So, after a few weeks, I finished their watercolor and they loved it so much they had it framed in a special koa frame and now have it proudly displayed at their shop.  We are currently collaborating on another passion flower design of the wild liliko'i also known as the banana poka flower found up in Kokee and Waimea Canyon.  After that, there may be a few more designs as Lori and Tony want to feature the different varieties of liliko'i.

Production units of Aunty Liliko'i Passion Fruit Dressing

Even though they will be celebrating the 25th anniversary of their brand, Lori and Tony actually took over the business in 2001 when it was just a trade name and five recipes.  The first building they had was a little bit more west in Waimea, the space where Kauai Granola now occupies.  In 2006 they moved to their current location across from Hofgaard Park at 9875 Waimea Road.  They have grown their brand to 19 products that they make at their production facility plus 26 products made by other manufacturers for a total of 45 passion fruit products.  They run production two times a week for a total of 1600-2500 units.  On top of that they also make liliko'i chiffon pies and liliko'i macadamia nut fudge. YUM!  With about 100,000 units they produce each year, they use the equivalent of about 300,000 passion fruits.

 Lori and Tony Cardenas with their multiple awards

In 2004 they won their first award for their Passion Fruit Wasabi Mustard at the Worldwide Mustard Competition, and in 2005 they won Grand Champion.  Since then they have continued to receive numerous awards for their BBQ sauce, mustard, and hot sauce.

If you are looking for unique, Kauai made products made by a small business owner on Kauai, be sure to check out Aunty Liliko'i while visiting Waimea and online at  She also offers personal care products featuring the unique passion fruit scent.  Her products also make great gifts!

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Wild Flowers of Kokee and Waimea Canyon State Park

In an attempt to escape from the heat and humidity of mid-July summer, we headed up to the mountains of Kauai also known as Kokee or Waimea Canyon State Park.  At about 4,000 feet above sea level we certainly found a cool breeze along with a light, misty rain.

Waimea Canyon State Park

The thing I love most about going up to Kokee is the peace and quiet and solitude, and that is exactly what you will find especially on a day during the work week.  Weekends are usually much busier.  We always take a ride up to the park right in front of the Kokee Lodge and the Kokee Museum.  It's our favorite spot and is just right for a picnic.  Coming up from Waimea, we stopped at Ishihara Market and picked up some bentos, poke, potato salad, and fruit for lunch.

chicken rooster Kauai Kokee Waimea Canyon
 One of the clucking chickens who decided to make herself at home near our table

I packed hot tea in Joe's old thermos from the old days when he used to work at the sugar plantation as a haul cane truck driver.  He used to bring his hot coffee in the thermos and store it behind the seat of the old haul cane truck.  The truck would bounce around on the rocky roads, and that's where the thermos got a nice little "smash" on it's side.  It's still good, though, and holds plenty heat.  Joe also made sure to pack his MP3 player so we could sit back, relax, and enjoy some nice Hawaiian music, especially IZ.

Waimea Canyon State Park Wild flowers orange

We just pulled into the park and there is hardly anyone here except for a few campers who are already packing up their two small tents to go home.  There is a chicken clucking around our table looking for food, and there are some myna birds off in the distance with a red-crested cardinal.  Right now the only things I hear are Joe's music playing softly, the sound of a few roosters crowing, and some doves and other birds making cheerful chirping noises.  Ah bliss!!!

Waimea Canyon State Park flower red hanging

It's pretty cool up here even though it was forecast to be 90 degrees Fahrenheit at sea level.  I am actually wearing a sweater.  It's a bit cloudy as I look up in the sky surrounded by pine trees and ohia lehua trees.  I love the fresh smell up here, especially the smell of the eucalyptus trees.

wild lilikoi flower waimea canyon passion fruit

As I go for a walk around the park, I spot some of my favorite wild flowers.  Most of these flowers are actually non-native, invasive species that have taken over.  However, most of them have been here in the twenty some years since I first discovered Kokee.  They have become familiar to me.  First I spot the bright and colorful wild Kahili Ginger which is named after a feather standard that the Hawaiian royalty used in ancient days.  It's scientific name is Hedychium gardnerianum.  Another invasive species is the wild liliko'i vine that has a pretty pink flower and a football shaped fruit.  It is called the banana poka flower, and it's scientific name is Passiflora tarminiana.  I also spot some red fuchsia bolivia and some orange crocosmia, also invasive species.  About the only flower I see that is native to Kokee is the lovely, red ohi'a lehua flower, a flowering evergreen tree from the myrtle family.  This tree is a very important tree in Hawaiian culture as it grows in volcanic areas and it is a sacred flower of Pele, the Volcano Goddess.  In fact it is usually the first plant that grows after a fresh lava flow.

Waimea Canyon State Park flower ohia lehua goddess pele lava

I head back to our picnic table for lunch, and as soon as we get the food out, it starts to rain lightly.  Thank goodness we had the beach umbrella in the trunk.  We use it  to cover us and the food while we ate.  Next, we experience a slight case of "Hawaiian paralysis" which is basically nap time after lunch.  Time to visit the Kokee Museum and then head down the mountain to finish off another perfect day on Kauai.

Waimea Canyon State Park Hydrangea Kokee museum
Hydrangea Flower in front of the Kokee Museum

Wild Flower Bouquet in front of the Kokee Museum

I hope you have enjoyed this little, relaxing adventure to one of the most interesting places on Kauai!

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Kauai Soto Zen Bon Festival 2015

With the smell of incense intertwined with freshly grilled yakitori wafting through the air, I know it is that time of year again...time for Kauai's Bon Dance events.  I'm not a dancer myself, but I thoroughly enjoy this fun, family event as I sample the local foods, marvel at the brightly colored lanterns strung around the temple, listen to the beat of the Taiko drums, and eye the beautiful Japanese-American ladies dressed up in their kimonos, happi coats, and yukatas.

Kauai Soto Zen Temple Bon Dance
Kauai Soto Zen Temple Japanese Buddhist

 Bon is a time to honor the spirits of the deceased family members.  It originates with the Buddha who helped one of his disciples with his deceased mother's spirit by offering her food so that she wouldn't be hungry and would be released from the Realm of Hungry Ghosts.  He was so happy that he danced with joy and that is where we get the Bon odori or Bon Dance.  During Bon, offerings of food are also placed on altars and graves of loved ones, and the lanterns are strung in memory of family members who have passed.

Hanapepe Buddha Statue

Kauai Soto Zen Temple Hanapepe

Bon odori also differs from region to region in the style of dance, music and food.  On Kauai you will find unique dishes from this region as well as traditional Japanese food.  My favorites are the flying saucers, saimin, yakitori, pastele plates, smoked meat, and manju to name a few.  You will also be treated to the sounds of Kauai's own Taiko Kauai, a very energetic and fun precision drumming group.

Taiko Kauai at Bon Festival Dance Hanapepe

Bon odori dance Kauai Hanapepe kimono kimonos Japanese

As if this wasn't enough, there are game booths for the keiki, cultural displays, shave ice, and special performances.  But, of course, the main attraction is always the dancing of the local people in a circle around a raised platform.  They invite everyone who wants to dance (even visitors) to join the circle.  And then at the end of the event, they have a fire burning ceremony called Taklage where the spirits are sent back home.