Artist Spotlight: Jude Garcia // Ornitorrinco

Name: Jude Garcia // Ornitorrinco

Pronouns: she/her, they/them

City: Monterey, California

Contact: // @orni_arte

Medium: Digital, Gouache and Watercoloring

Where are you originally from and how did you find your way to the Monterey area?

I am originally from East Los Angeles. I moved to Monterey about 4 years ago (wow

time flies) as a transfer student at CSUMB. I chose to transfer here because as much as I

loved every inch of LA, I always wanted to live by the ocean.

How would you describe your process?

My process? My Libra sun and Scorpio rising wont let me have a consistent process but

my Pisces moon says it should start and end with me crying lol. Oh she is a mess. I

usually play Math Rock and/or Kelsey Lu when I’m painting or drawing because I really

don’t want to hear singing. My color palate is heavily influenced by the sick shreds of

instrumental music and weird sounding cello in the background. I usually like to do

“snapshots” of moments with my fingers and make the mouth click and everythings when

I see a moment that I really enjoy and hope to come back to. I make a lot of my art based

on those finger snapshots (future indie band name right there).

Tell us something about yourself that most people might not know.

My artist name is Ornitorrinco and it means platypus in spanish. The reason I chose that

as my name is because my mom would tell me, “wanna hear a funny word…

ornitorrinco.” The way she says it just cracks me up and it reminds me of being a kid

amazed by like... words. My art is really connected with my trauma and all the diaspora

feels that come with having questions of your families homeland so I figured, why not

have my artist name be a word that makes me smile when I'm trying to make art that has

complex feelings.

I also find myself yelling at the birds in the Whole Food parking lot on a weekly basis...

Who are some artists, local or otherwise, that you hold in high esteem?

Some artists that I hold high esteem are: Carmen Lomas Garza, Emilia Cruz, RETNA,

Alyssa Mees, Sarah Carr, Berry McGee, Rob Benavides, Furrylittlepeach, and literally

all of my friends and family members that are artists and makers.

Where do you find yourself drawing the most inspiration?

Most of my inspiration comes from my own exposure to Graffiti in LA. My mentor grew

up in the graffiti world and we would go to every single art function big or small that

involved a graffiti artist and the most impressionable exhibit I was lucky to see was the

“Art in the Streets” at the MOCA in 2011. I went to see that exhibit soooo many times

before it went away because it had color from wall to wall and every image and writing

was just absolutely beautiful. I remember tearing up because here was the history I was

raised on and I was able to see it in an art museum. Typing out these memories made me

tear up a lil :,). I am also most inspired by public transportation. Before I moved to

Monterey I would take the bus and train all around LA and just sit and listen to music. I

would sometimes ride from as early as 6 am to as late at 11pm and I would just take

pictures of people and things that made me smile. I would have a bunch of random

pictures on my phone and collect various bus passes from my trip. Sometimes, I would

talk to complete strangers who were Angelinos through and through and they would only

give me the time or day because they could sense that I belonged in the “club”. I love

having someone paint a picture with their stories because it then helps me create

something hopefully just as grand. Finally, my youngest sister is my biggest inspiration.

She used to color my tattoos when she was younger and we’re just each other's biggest


What advice would you give your younger (artist) self?

When I started to paint more I would get really frustrated that the image I saw on my

head was not what I was putting on paper and then I got really great advice. I was told

the image you see in your head is where your art will be in 2 years. The goal is for you to

improve your skills over time so that you can create that image. Also, just wait for your

paint to dry you will mess it up if you slap on that color on top…(this is also advise that

my current self needs to hear too)

Pffff. And it really be like that sometimes.