Podcast time!!

The Artist Unmasked – PODCAST


Nov 26, 2019

Erica Orr took time out of her busy schedule to interview me! It was so much fun and I was so amazed at her talent for interviewing and her support of the local art scene. She is a true creative in her own right and I hope you enjoy the podcast!

If you want to support her podcast, please join her patreon account:


You can find this and other awesome podcasts with Erica Orr at these locations:

Apple Podcasts – http://bit.ly/ApplePodcastsTAU

Stitcher – http://bit.ly/StitcherTAU

Google Play – http://bit.ly/GooglePlayTAU

Overcast – http://bit.ly/OvercastTAU

SDVoyager Interviewed Me as Curator for La Playa Gallery!!

SDVoyager Interview as Curator for La Playa Gallery


May 10, 2018

Today we’d like to introduce you to Erica Putis.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Erica. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.

La Playa Gallery opened in 2013 and sits in the heart of La Jolla Shores offering local residents, visitors and tourists a warm collection of jewelry, ceramics, sculptures and paintings. The gallery provides the public with a unique set of thematic exhibitions each year. La Playa Gallery takes pride in offering its patrons a unique and individual experience while featuring local artists, bringing a variety of art that may not be seen at other galleries.

La Playa Gallery supports its local art community with an Artist-in-Residency program, hosts educational art classes for all ages and also offers a layaway option. We believe everyone should be able to own art they love and treasure, and we enjoy sparking the creative side of each person with whom we connect. This connection with art and our community is our driving force and we will continue to follow our mission wholeheartedly.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?

I joined the gallery in 2016 as the curator and what I heard is that, as with most new small business, there were some interesting twists and turns. They had to remodel to make sure the gallery was handicapped accessible and had to close down for a short time to accomplish it. La Playa Gallery then took a slow organic route to become publicly known. When I started working here, they were only hosting two or three shows a year with a limited staff. I decided to really focus on local artists and showcasing their amazing work by coordinating six group art exhibits a year.

Step forward to 2018 and I have increased that number to an eight a year, including solo and group exhibitions. I have also started an artist-in-residence program along with educational classes which will be held at the gallery. These things are very new and we are extremely excited about them.

A small business is always a work in progress so I am constantly working on our website, social media and finding ways to support and engage our local community. When that connection is made, working here is very fulfilling. We love bringing attention to local artists who demonstrate creativity, quality and a willingness to work with us.

La Playa Gallery – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
I am the curator at La Playa Gallery. I coordinate many exhibits throughout the year along with managing the front and back end of the gallery. We specialize in fine art and jewelry, featuring artwork ranging from paintings, sculpture, fiber art and pottery. I am proud to feature local artists based on quality and not on what is just trendy at the moment or if they are well-known.

I enjoy organizing group exhibitions with no more than four artists that create in different styles or mediums but have something unique that ties them all together. It’s challenging and rewarding to find artists to fit the bill but San Diego is becoming a rich and diverse art community and every day I meet new people who inspire me. If they inspire me, they are bound to inspire someone else and that is such a powerful tool to feel connected to others.

I think what sets us apart from other galleries is our unique selection of artists, location, cozy space and our exciting artist receptions. We love celebrating our featured artists, with the public, while offering wine, cheese, and homemade sweets.

What is “success” or “successful” for you?

As a small business, it is always important to make money but that is not the only thing we care about. Of course, in order to stay open, we need the support of our community to take an interest in art.

Buying art is so important in this field because you are not only supporting a local small business you are helping artists put food on the table and buy new supplies to create more artwork. This symbiotic relationship really comes full circle when we all support each other. Artists create work that inspires them, we use our resources to bring their work to the public and the public must buy the artwork so that the artist can continue to create and we can continue to support them.

This is the ultimate definition of success for any small business but is especially important in the world of art. Art is not just an extravagance. Art speaks to every single one of us and creates a bond between what we see, how we deal with our surroundings and the people we come in contact with every day. Art can alter or define our values and beliefs or can even be as simple as making us feel calm or safe. We, at La Playa Gallery, really strive to help fill this need in our community.

Contact Info:

SDVoyager Interviewed Me!

So exciting! SDVoyager interviewed me regarding my art and creative endeavors.  Check it out!!


Check out Erica Putis’ Artwork

Today we’d like to introduce you to Erica Putis.

Erica, we’d love to hear your story and how you got to where you are today both personally and as an artist.
Sure! I would love to.

I grew up in Vermont and spent many hours walking around the 20 acres my family owned. Because it was a small town I learned to entertain myself and much of that time was spent creating. I would make jewelry, Barbie clothes and drawings and try to sell it to my fellow 3rd graders. I suppose my Mom instilled an entrepreneurial spirit in me since she had started and owned many businesses her whole life.

I studied art, music and theater in high school and decided to follow music and theater into college. It was in college that I joined my first band. It was intoxicating and I spent the next 15 years of my life singing and playing bass in a number of bands on the East and West coast. I continued to create art but it wasn’t until 2011 that I started to really paint again.

After I moved to San Diego in 2005 with one of my bands I also created a clothing company called, www.nuclearclothing.com. During that time I was involved with many runway shows and photo shoots. I fell in love with makeup artistry and started to create my own, all natural products, www.nuclearmakeup.com. But, when I started painting again in 2011 it became obvious that art was becoming another new passion for me so I created an artist page, www.ericaputisart.com and slowly switched my time and energy from music/fashion to painting. I still create music solo music, www.julicadann.com and collaborate with some musicians but purely for fun.

Because of my inquisitive nature to experience all creative things I decided to start writing and in 2015 published my first book. I wrote a young adult fairy tale and it was so rewarding I started a novel. All of the websites I have mentioned (I know, there are a lot), I am still excited about and working on, but www.ericaputis.com is where everything is linked and where I post about my writing activities.

In 2016 I became the curator for La Playa Gallery in La Jolla Shores, CA and I just love this job. It lets me connect with local artists in a way that is so refreshing and rewarding. Being an artist, I have an inside view on the needs of the San Diego art community, the unique qualities of each individual artist we feature and I feel honored to be a part of it. I love shedding light on our vibrant art scene and continuing this new creative movement in SD. I can only hope that what I create personally, and as a curator, adds to this community in a positive way.

We’d love to hear more about your art. What do you do you do and why and what do you hope others will take away from your work?
When I started painting again in 2011 I was using it as a tool to get through an emotional period in my life. Needless to say it worked and my love of art came rushing back to me. I also found the skills I had acquired in high school never went away so my attention to detail started to take shape again. The reason I didn’t go to college for art was that I felt I lacked imagination since all I could do was copy photographs. But as an adult, (well… kind of an adult) I wasn’t afraid to experiment with paint anymore. Perfection was no long a goal as most people find out with time. So, yes, I always want my finished piece to look good but the process was more important now. It wasn’t about if people liked it or not, it was about if I liked it and felt a connection with it. Not needing approval of others is incredibly empowering.

I create because I can. I don’t really have a specific style and I know that is often looked down upon, but I feel life is too short to limit myself to just one style or subject. There are so many amazing, beautiful things in the world that inspire me and to limit myself feels like a disservice. So I have many different series in different mediums. I love painting with oils and acrylics. I love working with fibers and weaving. I love sculpting from clay, foil or plaster. I love making wearable art as in jewelry, clothes or skin care. I find it impossible to narrow it down to one medium or subject.

I suppose it all comes down to my love of nature and science. I find beauty in a simple leaf, the structure of an atom or in a devastating tornado. Socially, I find myself in a love/hate relationship with humans that is also portrayed in my work at times. This little planet we live on is so inspiring, terrifying and beautiful that I try to find a balance between them. It’s difficult, but when I find that balance it makes the world we live in easier to understand and that much more enjoyable.

What do you know now that you wished you had learned earlier?
I have been teaching art for a few years and my only real advice is… make sure you are having fun. It’s SO important. If you aren’t enjoying yourself then why are you doing it? Life it too short do to things that make you miserable, whether it be a job, bad relationship or creating something.

Specifically, with art, don’t worry about how it looks when you are done. Creativity is like a muscle. The more you work it out and practice the better you get. Everyone can create. You just have to give yourself a chance get better. Natural born talent can only get you so far. Practice and you will get better. And even if you don’t practice a ton… just have fun. DONE!! Haha.

Do you have any events or exhibitions coming up? Where would one go to see more of your work? How can people support you and your artwork?
You can see my artwork at http://www.ericaputisart.com. If you want to see the other projects I work on feel free to visit www.ericaputis.com. Supporting my work would be to buy it! I need to pay bills too you know! Haha

Contact Info:

Buy Now Buttons!!

So exciting!! There are now “Buy Now” buttons directly my art website if you are looking for a quick and easy way to purchase your very own original piece of artwork. The link will take you directly to PayPal and will include tax and shipping charges. Even if you don’t have a PayPal account you can use it as a guest with your credit or debit card. It’s that easy!! So get to shopping before your favorite piece gets snapped up by someone else! Happy Holiday Shopping!!!

New Gallery Show! Nov 11, 2016 (5 – 8 pm)

I’m super excited to be showing my “Leaf Peepers” series in La Playa Gallery’s next show! Hope to see all you lovely people there for the opening!!

La Playa Gallery's show "Flora Imagery in Art"
La Playa Gallery’s show “Flora Imagery in Art”

Flora Imagery in Art (Nov 11 – Dec 30, 2016)

La Playa Gallery is pleased to announce a new exhibition entitled “Flora Imagery in Art.” Because flora and floral imagery is an essential component of our very sense of health, we encourage you to treat yourself and a loved one to this unique show. A wine and cheese reception will introduce our featured San Diego artists: Hill&Stump, Kay Kaplan and Erica Putis.

Join us Friday, November 11, 2016 at 5:00 pm as we present a unique set of artworks sure to inspire and invigorate fresh introspection.

Does the very depiction of flora imagery enhance our human capacities to sense qualitative human characteristics such as grace and beauty? Or are colors, shape and shade more important stimuli?

Join us as we explore our common human thirst for the natural environment and its imagery. Our opening reception Friday, November 11, 2016 is from 5:00 – 8:00 pm at La Playa Gallery, which is in the heart of the Merchant District of La Jolla Shores. Regular gallery hours are Monday – Friday 10:00 am – 5:00 pm. For additional information, please call (858) 454-6903.


Now Teaching Private Lessons!

Beginner Private Art Lessons

Want to learn how to paint and not have to travel to classes?  After an initial successful meeting to discuss what you would like to learn, we can begin convenient lessons at your location within the San Diego area.  With over 20 years of experience in painting, drawing, teaching and displaying art at shows, I will teach you the basics of art in a fun and interesting way.

* Ages 10 – Adult – Beginners

* I will travel to your location for convenient and fun lessons.

* You can choose what you would like to learn in the mediums of drawing, oil painting or acrylic painting in different styles, including but not limited to realism, abstract and impressionism.

* Lessons are $50/hour supplies not included. I can purchase the supplies but I must be reimbursed before the lesson starts.

* I truly believe that everyone is creative if you let yourself be. Contact me to give your creativity a jump start!

For more information, go to ericaputisart.com or email me at ericaputisart@gmail.com