Patricia Michaels, Project Runway, Native American, Designer, Fashion Designer, Jennifer Esperanza, NM, New Mexico, Taos,

Sensual Native American Designer Patricia Michaels of Project Runway

 

Patricia Michaels ~ AKA Water Lily

Contemporary Native American Taos Pueblo Clothing & Textile Designer

“My idea of “green” is really blue. My ideas come from water. When there are obstacles, I go back to my given name Water Lily & things become clear. As Pueblo people, we consider our source Blue Lake. Our water remains pure and clean. Water is wild ~ it deepens canyons & creates rapids. But it is gentle too, at the mercy of wherever it goes, forced to pickup toxins & pesticides. Water is not life ~ giving. Water is life itself.” Patricia Michaels

Patricia has been my friend & client for over 18 years.  Ever since I have known her she has been so dedicated to her textiles, her fashions, her work … her art.

This season Patricia has battled it out with other talented designers on the popular reality TV show Project Runway & she is one of the final three contestants. Tonight’s project Runway show will feature the collections of these uber talented three designers & Patricia has a chance to win it all.

People across the state of New Mexico will be bathed in an electric blue glow tonight, all of her well wishers glued to their TV sets & monitors.

I wish her the very Best on Project Runway & Always.

Patricia Michaels ~ Sanding on the roof of her family home at the Taos Pueblo ~ wearing her textile & holding an image that I made of a model in her fashions ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Patricia Michaels ~ Sanding on the roof of her family home at the Taos Pueblo ~ wearing her textile & holding an image that I made of a model in her fashions ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Keep Reading ….

Pat & I met when our oldest kids were in pre-school together. Soon after we meet I started making images of her & of her work. Her son Gabe was the first boy to kiss my daughter Emily. He was six years old & she was four. Gabe & Emily are still friends to this day, each of them young filmmakers. 

This is a portrait that I made of Patricia from that time. I believe I made this image in 1995 or 1996. It was published in an ad for the natural food chain Wild Oats.

Patricia Michaels waering one of her own pieces called "Corn Dress." Circa 1996 ~ Santa fe New Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Patricia Michaels waering one of her own pieces called “Corn Dress.” Circa 1996 ~ Santa fe New Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

It was hard for me to watch Project Runway at times this season. Patricia was treated very poorly by some of the other designers & put down by Nina Garcia way too often for my taste. Thank goodness for designer Zac Posen & model Heidi Klum. They have expressed often that are moved by her unique artistry & voice.

A highlight of the show for me was when the gracious Tim Gunn visited Patricia’s family home at The taos Pueblo & sat to eat with her family & then went to her design studio in town. He was visibly moved & expressed it to Patricia.

One should treat any other human with respect. I don’t think that many knew that Patricia is a very respected woman & artist in Northern New Mexico. Not only did she go to school at The Institute of American Indian Art in Santa Fe, New Mexico, The Art Institute of Chicago but Pat also lived in Venice Italy for sometime.

Patricia is very well educated, of the world, unique, wildly talented, hard working & also a very traditional Taos Pueblo woman.  Her quiet calm in the storm of so much negativity on the show helped to make her a fan favorite.

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A Bronze of Patricia by American Sculptor Glenna Goodacre “Water Lily” edition of 35 ~ $18,000

Patricia & I were close when we were each pregnant with our second kids. I remember walking down into the Taos Gorge with Pat to make a portrait of her for an art magazine. We were laughing & talking and every few steps she would toss a rock in front of our path. I asked her why she was doing such a thing. Patricia just smiled at me & said “Rattlesnakes.” 

Many of the photos of her work from the mid 90′s until about 2004 were all shot with film.Since I went digital in2004 I have not even looked at a transparency or a negative. Someday soon I will dig into those gems.

This Image is called “Flower Girl” & it was made in 1997. The model is April Winters, Patricia’s cousin. April is holding one of Pat’s textiles around her waist & is covered in fabric flowers. Patricia did the styling  of the hair & make-up. When I made this image it was a late summer’s evening in Taos. The mountains had turned purple & flat. I asked my assistant to shine a flashlight in the model’s eyes. 

Many years later the state of New Mexico Film office made a bold move & used this image in a full page ad in Variety magazine to advertise the tax incentives for Hollywood film production in New Mexico.

It was powerful for me that a beautiful Native American woman dressed in the fashions of another beautiful, expressed & talented Native American woman was representing this breath taking state, as it should be. 

 

Variety-Full Page-Ad-New-Mexico-Film-Patricia-Michaels-April-Winters-Jennifer-Esperanza

Full Page ad in Variety Magazine for The State of New Mexico Film Tax Incentives ~ Fabric & Styling by Patricia Michaels ~ Model April Winters ~ Location Taos New Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Many “American” people do not have first hand life experience with First Nation or Native American people. I have been blessed to live in Northern New Mexico for twenty years.The history, earth culture, practices, artistry of the many Pueblos & Nations of New Mexico are most of what makes this land so very beautiful. A place hears the prayers of the people.

I have many memories & stories shared with Patricia. We are two women who believe in beauty. The beauty of this earth, the beauty of women & of culture. The moments that we have worked together stay in my heart. We have respect, an understanding & a flow. I want only the best for her & I am thrilled that her years of hard work has now been graced with recognition & success.

We LOVE you Patricia! ~ GO!

Published in Tempo ~ Taos New Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Published in Tempo ~ Taos New Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Published in Tempo ~ Taos New Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Published in Tempo ~ Taos New Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

The Beautiful Work of Designer Patricia Michaels ~ Taos New Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

The Beautiful Work of Designer Patricia Michaels ~ Taos New Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

The Beautiful Work of Designer Patricia Michaels ~ Taos New Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

The Beautiful Work of Designer Patricia Michaels ~ Taos New Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Designer Patricia Michaels ~ Santa Fe Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

The Beautiful Work of Designer Patricia Michaels ~ Santa Fe Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Designer Patricia Michaels ~ Santa Fe Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

The Beautiful Work of Designer Patricia Michaels ~ Santa Fe Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Designer Patricia Michaels & her work  ~ Santa Fe New Mexico & Taos New Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Designer Patricia Michaels & her work ~ Santa Fe New Mexico & Taos New Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

The Bold Work of Designer Patricia Michaels ~ Santa Fe Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

The Bold Work of Designer Patricia Michaels ~ Santa Fe Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

The Sensual Work of Designer Patricia Michaels ~  santa Fe & Taos New Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

The Sensual Work of Designer Patricia Michaels ~ santa Fe & Taos New Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Of The Earth ~ Water & Sky Patricia Michaels ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Of The Earth ~ Water & Sky Patricia Michaels ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Designer Patricia Michaels ~ a model wearing her gown on her land in Taos & her daughter  Margeaux ~ All in Beautiful  Blues ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Designer Patricia Michaels ~ a model wearing her gown on her land in Taos & her daughter Margeaux ~ All in Beautiful Blues ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Hand Painted Textiles by Designer Patricia Michaels ~ Taos New Mexico ~ Photo g Jennifer Esperanza

Hand Painted Textiles by Designer Patricia Michaels ~ Taos New Mexico ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Patricia's Daughter Margeaux ~ Patricia & Her Son Gabriel ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Patricia’s Daughter Margeaux ~ Patricia & Her Son Gabriel ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Patricia Michaels daughter is the model & my son Gabe is the lighting assistant  ~ photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Patricia Michaels daughter is the model & my son Gabe is the lighting assistant ~ photo © Jennifer Esperanza

A Patricia Michaels New Mexico Mix ~ photo © Jennifer Esperanza

A Patricia Michaels New Mexico Mix ~ photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Pat's son Gabriel & my daughter Emily {after she gave herself a haircut} when they were little kids at the Taos Pueblo ~ Patricia & me ~ My son Gabriel & Pat's daughter Margeaux on her birthday.. years ago ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Pat’s son Gabriel & my daughter Emily {after she gave herself a haircut} when they were little kids at the Taos Pueblo ~ Patricia & me ~ My son Gabriel & Pat’s daughter Margeaux on her birthday.. years ago ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

 

“Many moments dance around in recollection of working with the Beautifully talented Jennifer. I say this because I can’t quit pin point how it works, we just dance together as we make the magic happen. After all it is the sensual grace, that we try to bring out in this forever nurturing nature of women. Love & Peace”

Patricia Michaels ~

Native American Contemporary Designer & Textile Artist

~ Project Runway, Season 11

Patricia & me ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

Patricia & me ~ Photo © Jennifer Esperanza

patricia

PROJECT RUNWAY

PATRICIA MICHAELS FROM “PROJECT RUNWAY”

ON PARENTING, HER HERITAGE AND STYLE!

http://moms.mylifetime.com/lifetime-shows-blogs/patricia-michaels-from-project-runway-on-parenting-her-heritage-and-style

Patricia is in my book “I Like My Heroes Real” on Blurb.com

http://www.blurb.com/b/3241702-i-like-my-heroes-real

I Like My Heroes Real ~ By Jennifer Esperanza

I Like My Heroes Real ~ By Jennifer Esperanza

13 thoughts on “Sensual Native American Designer Patricia Michaels of Project Runway

  1. Sandra Eileen

    How lovely to see this selection of photographs you have done with Patricia Michaels over time. Beautiful captures of a beautiful woman by a beautiful woman.

    Reply
    1. Jennifer Esperanza Post author

      Thank You so much Sandra. I love her & her work.
      It has always been an honor to work with Patricia.
      All Love to you,
      Jen
      xox

      Reply
  2. Amandaa Looper

    Thank you, Jennifer ~ for always sharing so much beauty +++

    Reply
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  4. Christina

    I have no words to describe how beautiful her designs are. I would like to contact her about buying some of her designs. please send me a link to contact her.

    Reply
  5. Gail

    I loved seeing Patricia on “Project Runway” and think it would have been helpful if people had known more about her and her work, epecially the other designers. Then again, their true selves came out and they didn’t make the final four, but Patricia did.

    Reply
  6. Kara Lin

    Jennifer ! Thank you for your beautiful blog, you blow me away with the talent !!!
    I love this one, and the way you create such beauty and empower women together, at the
    same time ~
    p.s. I have always wanted red hair and love your stunning red hair with those eyes, girl,
    um umm umm

    Reply
  7. joseph hempfling

    met Patricia at the WillWright Museum show with Carol and learned that she will be having an upcoming show on or around August 15 and would like more details. Is there a way to link to her website and or contact her directly for more details. And also presume she will be entering the Contemporary Catagory clothing contest during up coming Indian Market. joe

    Reply

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