Passiflora arida
Desert passionflower

© 2013 Martha A. Thompson

Desert passionflower is a little taste of the tropics, but native to areas of the Sonoran Desert. The sweet pulp and seeds are edible and the plant has been used medicinally to calm the body and the heart.

Artist's Biography
I was born in 1968 in the Port of Guaymas, Sonora, Mexico. After I graduated from High School, I came to Tucson under a scholarship from Suffolk Hills Catholic High School to learn English as a second language. After two years in Tucson, where I learned to read, write, and speak English, I went back home to Mexico and started working at the San Carlos Marina in the tourist town of San Carlos, near my hometown of Guaymas. While working at the marina I met the man who was to become my future husband, Glenn Thompson. Glenn was a geologist who had his own environmental consulting business in Tucson, AZ. We got married in Mexico and moved to Tucson where we have made our home.

In 2001, I felt I was ready to go back to art and I decided I needed some drawing lessons to get better results in watercolor. I started taking lessons with Larry Wollam, a longtime Signature Member of the Southern Arizona Watercolor Guild. I fell in love with pencil drawing and I did not want to stop doing it to start painting, even though I really wanted to work with watercolors again. In 2006, I finally started a watercolor class also taught by my drawing instructor. I am truly inspired by color and nature and try to capture my subject with as much detail as I can. Watercolor painting and pencil drawing are big passions in my life.

My husband’s retirement in 2006 started the fulfillment of our dream of traveling. We have explored some amazing places in different parts of Mexico that I always wanted to visit, among them: the copper canyon in Chihuahua, some cities and picturesque towns in the states of Veracruz, Michoacán and Oaxaca, and we have been on two marvelous trips to the wilderness of Alaska. For the last two years, we have also enjoyed visiting Yellowstone National Park combined with a trip to the Susan Kathleen Black Foundation Art Workshop that takes place in Dubois, WY. This workshop has been a good introduction for me to plain air painting that I believe is helping me in my development as an artist and given me an opportunity to look at nature in a closer way.