Wild oysters in Costa Rica

As you may know about me, I love oysters! Not only do I like to eat them, but I use their shells extensively in my art work. They are a symbol of my father’s family and the time they farmed oysters in Washington. Continue reading “Wild oysters in Costa Rica”

Joy of Costa Rica so far


On the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, I’m in the heart of Gaia. The warm ocean, sunshine, and lush vegetation melted away all my tension, worries, and jadedness.

Continue reading “Joy of Costa Rica so far”

7:30am walk in Montezuma, Costa Rica

Massive graveyards of crustations, a shell collectors paradise; itty bitty frogs freeze like little pebbles when they think you’re looking and then continue their leap crossing where a creek meets the ocean; a lone pelican dives with precision while the morning sun places hide and seek with the clouds, and warm waves crash on soft white sand. Oh look! now a pelican friend joins in the feasting. In the background my ears pick up birds and bugs that chirp, caw, rattle, and sing different tunes than on my northern Pacific coastside.

The healing power of art and how it informs us

Ancestor Guide

It seems so simple: write an intention, make art, and journal. It may appear to be an easy practice – so easy that you wonder, “Why do it? What could I possibly get out of it?” Well a lot! Continue reading “The healing power of art and how it informs us”

Shintani’s Ancestor Chimes featured in Seattle Weekly

“Working lighter on the land means being fragile and vulnerable. For that reason, my favorite work here hangs almost unnoticed from fir branches near a picnic area facing the bay. Judy Shintani‘s gently ringing Ancestor Chimes are partly narrative, with text on oyster shell….”, writes Brian Miller

It’s great to get some press and I’m especially pleased that a photo from my Ancestor Chimes and positive feedback on the installation is in the Seattle Weekly. Carkeek Park has been a challenging venue for many of the artists and my heart goes out to them. Please read the review of the Rootbound Heaven and Earth Exhibition below:


A gift, a perfect gift.

Bees have buzzed into my life. They are in my mind, my art, my sunflowers, and now I have a piece of their creation in my studio. Sweet fresh honey is dripping and sticky on my art table.

Women friends have brought the bee in my life. Esther would only have beeswax candles in her house. I could see why – they have a wonderful scent and a beautiful glow. Now I too have these in my studio.

Susan Friedman taught me how to coat paintings and sculpture in beeswax, using the encaustic process. It is one of the most lovely smelling mediums to work with, and so fun to dip, pour and paint with the translucent hot wax.


This week Linda Hettle introduced me to Skye Taylor – the creator of  the Temple Hive. I attended my first hive opening with these wonderful women. It was an extraordinary experience to be in the presence of the sacred buzzing beings. Skye prepared the smoker with sumac, pine needles, while Linda held a rhythm on a drum with the 6 sided hexagon shape drawn on it. Skye pulled out the top bars to reveal beautiful honeycomb. Five of us surrounded the hive and felt completely safe without protective suits.


At the end of the hive inspection, Skye gifted me with some honeycomb. The smell of wax and honey made out of pollen, permeates my studio. The light and shadows play with the translucent perfect hexagon structure – a mini bee temple. I have no words to fully describe how much I am enjoying it.