Paul Madonna's 40ft Mural in the Salesforce Transit Center

Here is a recap of the Paul Madonna mural Shane Izykowski and I painted at the brand new Salesforce Transit Center in downtown San Francisco.

"ArtSpan partnered with LPC West Transit Management LLC and the Transbay Joint Powers Authority to highlight and support the local artist community in San Francisco. 38 ArtSpan Artists and their teams were selected to paint murals covering 10,052 square feet of the ground level retail storefront windows at the new Salesforce Transit Center."


Pictured here is the mural design that artist Shane Izykowski and myself painted. The design belongs to artist Paul Madonna, and it is based off of an original drawing from his All Over Coffee series.

Pictured: Shane Izykowski, Paul Madonna, Sonia Leticia

Pictured: Shane Izykowski, Paul Madonna, Sonia Leticia

The mural is almost 40 feet long and 7 feet tall. It took approximately 60 hours to complete (or 120 hours of combined labor), and in the video at the top of this post you can see a timelapse of the whole process condensed into about 10 minutes.


This project presented the challenge of translating another artists art into a very large scale version, and in a completely different medium. Throughout the process Shane and I had to discuss what would be simplified and what would be kept true to the drawing. Time was a major factor, and we pushed it to the absolute limit.

After the wall was taped and primed I did a lot of the initial drawing with pencil, and then helped block in values and colors. I did a lot of the work in the deck/stairway area, and tried my best to visually represent the details and layers of the wood paneling and objects. One of the most important elements of the mural, the words, "PLEASE TELL ME THINGS", I measured and painted in. I also drew in the sneakers hanging on the power lines on the left. After those major elements, I assisted in general clean up and detail work. Shane did all of the color mixing and color choices, and a ton of painting. He also painted in almost the entirety of the thin black lines that outline everything in the piece, including measuring and painting in all the horizontal lines on the buildings. It was truly a collaborative effort all around and we pulled this off as a team.


With the time we had to work on this piece, we are very pleased with the outcome, and are happy that Paul gave his seal of approval as well. We've seen the public interact with the mural, taking pictures and selfies, and seeing that level of community engagement has made it feel like a huge success! Shane and I are looking forward to more mural projects in our future!


YakiniQ Cafe Art Show

Hey all! I want to take a moment to thank all of my friends and supporters who came out to my art show on the 1st at YakiniQ Cafe!

From the left: Ana Aranda, myself, Mary Syring, and Jennifer/JK Phan

From the left: Ana Aranda, myself, Mary Syring, and Jennifer/JK Phan

I showed alongside these three fantastical artists ^ , who, if you don't already, need to start following immediately: 


Mary Syring

To be in a show with these ladies was an absolute delight, and I truly feel like this show ended up greater than the sum of its parts. We all worked so hard and pulled off a badass exhibition! The vibrancy and energy of the night is still with me. 

Talking with my hands, like usual :)

Talking with my hands, like usual :)

I'm holding close the sweet and encouraging words I received from guests that night. This experience has reminded me that, yeah, I actually am an artist. I'm a part of this community.. and there is room for me. I'm also encouraged to further pursue my interest in creative writing!

In addition to all *the feels*, this all took place in the warmness that is the YakiniQ Cafe. With board games and adorable treats abound, our collective artwork melded perfectly. 

And of course a shout out to Shane, who busted his buns to make sure this show was a success. 

I adore this guy!

I adore this guy!


Thanks again to everyone who stopped by, I sincerely appreciate every single one of you  ♥️

See ya later,

Sonia 🖤 


[Photos courtesy of Blank.Gallery. Photography by Shane Izykowski]

Return of the Student


Hey! I'm back from my digital hiatus, and I've been busy. I have some news. This Fall.. I'll be going back to school! Since San Francisco approved tuition-free community college, starting this Fall semester, I'll be able to attend college and get my edumacation on! Without destroying my financial life with student debt :D !


 At 25 years old, soon 26, it's an interesting feeling to be going back to school. I'm aware that I'm still young, but I've been out of school for what feels like forever, and it'll be strange to be around your "typical" freshmen. And I'm tackling being a full-time student while working 30+ hours a week. I'm sure I'll find some folks who are in similar boats as me, though. 

This will be an interesting adventure for sure. At times like this I'm so grateful for the support of my significant other, Shane. It's so ideal to have a support system to help you through high pressure times, no matter how big or small. 

Let's do this!


See ya soon,

Sonia 🖤 

Social Media Masks

Since 2003(ish) I've been a citizen of the internet. My first memories of being online and talking to other people was on AIM - AOL Instant Messenger. Throwback, eh? It was mostly a contained space, since all of the people I spoke to I had added from school. Very shortly after that though I discovered Yahoo! chat rooms, where I spoke to all kinds of strangers from all over the world. I seriously should've been monitored back then, but my parent's didn't know any better. In these chat rooms I never revealed my true identity, and carried on as someone of a different age and name. 

After that period I started playing a lot of online video games. I played some random games for a couple of years, but then it was mostly World of Warcraft for quite a long time. I played as characters of all kinds of fantastical races, genders, ages, etc. I revealed my real name and age to very few people. 

Now I'm at a time where I don't troll around anonymously on chat rooms anymore or play online games. Instead, I have what everyone else has - social media accounts. This is so difference from my history on the internet. Your name and picture is slapped on a screen for everyone to see. No anonymity. No pseudonyms. However, I think there is still a lot of overlap. 

I find that so many people are very curatorial of what they put online. They mostly post the most positive and happy moments. Pictures of happy selfies on the beach, of a purchase of a new car, perhaps they're sharing a personal memory of a relative who just passed. It's a skewed version of their true selves. 

You could make an argument that these folks are wearing an internet persona - just like when I used to play online games, and was not revealing my true self. On the internet, everyone is wearing a mask of some kind. 

Unplugging (mostly)

I recently posted online that I'm taking a break from Facebook and Twitter until June.

I'm taking this interwebs hiatus for a few reasons. Mainly, I've been doing some reflecting, and I'm finding myself to be creatively stifled and it's making me feel quite depressed and stressed out.

I haven't been able to critically think or deeply work for a very long time, or at least not as often as I should. I don't read as much as I used to, and I don't sketch as much as I used to, which really hurts the most.

I'm also definitely addicted to my phone, and I hate that in every moment in between tasks I'm pulling it out to occupy my brain with endless FB and Twitter scrolling of pointless stimuli for long, wasted chunks of time. It's like I'm drinking empty calories. What's funny is with all of this social media and communication.. I don't even feel like I'm communicating anything original or of value anymore. And it's definitely not making me more productive. 

I know this is going to be challenging for me, which sounds pathetic, because this is truly not a big deal in the grand scheme of things, but I'm hoping this gives me a good mental reset. This is important to me, so it's what I'm going to do. 


 If you need me I'm available at my email

Also, I'm getting ready for an art show this summer, and I'm going to keep posting art updates to my Instagram account. I'll also be writing on this blog here at 


🖤 Sonia 

Happy New Year! <3

2016 has come and gone, and I've been taking the time to reflect on what I've learned, what I've accomplished and where I fell short.

One of the biggest gamechangers for me this year was moving to a great new apartment in the Japantown district in San Francisco. Having a much more pleasing home environment has made all the difference. I actually look forward to going home, and feel like I can be more productive in this space.

I got to work on some cool projects, like helping design and paint a huge stage at the Kinetic Arts Center in Oakland. I also did a lot of work with youth this year for Youth Open Studios in SF. Working with kids taught me SO much!

I got to enjoy more of what this city has to offer and saw some great shows at really cool venues. (My favorite show was Die Antwoord! :D )

I did fall short on creating as much artwork as I'd like to, and executing and following through with creating is absolutely my biggest priority in the new year.

In 2017 I'm going to focus on my strengths. I have some challenges ahead, as we all do, but I hope to put my head down, push past them and get some real work done. I truly feel disappointed in myself at the lack of artwork I've created so far in my life, and that needs to change.

Through this first week of 2017 I've been brainstorming my goals, making realistic to high expectations with actionable steps to follow through on.

One of these goals is to write a blog post a week, so.. so far so good! :)

Here's to 2017, I wish you all well <3

See you,


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Art, Water + Convergence

This week I've sketched some fun things in my Moleskine. Not as much painting as I'd like, but some fun doodles nonetheless!

Over the course of the last few weeks, along with trying to sketch every day, I've been trying to consume enough water every day. I've noticed that my productivity started to fall the last few days - and I realized I had stopped keeping track of my water intake and was surely dehydrated. I wouldn't be surprised if there was a relationship here.. Lesson learned.. Drink your water!

Moving on -  this Saturday, April 9th, was the opening of Convergence! This was a very energetic gallery opening, with so many folks coming out in support of the Journal Building Artists.


This week I'm going to be focusing on staying consistent with posting my work on social media, continue writing a story I'm working on (more on that in the future!), and finishing my TAXES ;__; ! DUN DUN DUN!

Wish me luck!

See ya around the interwebs!

Doing the Things!



Hello! Hola!

First, I want to say - thanks for visiting! <3 It's folks like you, my friend, that empower me to keep doing what I do, and I wholeheartedly appreciate it!

Here is a little selection of some recent sketches and drawings. I'm trying to keep figure drawing in my routine - and I'm having a lot of fun designing these unique characters and their cute weirdo animal friends!

I have also started a new oil painting, and below is a little sneak peek!

This is an assemblage of clips from Snapchat. Let's be friends on Snapchat! I'm at SoniaPaints!

I'm looking forward to a productive April, and wish you one as well!

One source of recent inspiration to keep my productivity game on point comes from Bobby Chiu's YouTube channel:

Bobby Chiu's YouTube videos and interviews are an endless source of inspiration and motivation for any artist!

What do you do to keep motivated? How do you keep yourself productive? Comment below or on your favorite social media platform - I love learning about different methods! Social links at the bottom of the page!

This coming week I'm aiming on making more progress on my Octopus painting, sketching more cutie characters and staying in touch with friends more! :D


ONE MORE THING! If you're in San Francisco this Saturday.....

You DO NOT want to miss this art show!

You DO NOT want to miss this art show!

The 19 artists-in-residence at the Journal Building in San Francisco invite you to the opening for their group show, “Convergence,” held at the Alabama Project Gallery. “Convergence” displays the diverse works of the artists who became a self-sufficient, unified community during their residency.

Here's the Facebook Event page for details:

I'm particularly excited to view the new art of my boyfriend, Shane Izykowski! He's been pushing himself so hard lately and I have learned a lot just by watching him paint his latest pieces.

I'm excited to view his Sinking Siren in all it's glossy glory in person - Here's a video of his process. Wait until the end when he pours on the resin finish!

Hope to see you at the show!

Till next week! See ya!

Sonia ♥