Painting by Mouth
Every morning on the Malecon, working in natural light and inspired by the sounds of the sea, Xaime Ximenez sits with brush in mouth in front of his canvas. Life gave this unusual artist unusual abilities, which he has devoted to painting since 1985, when he found inspiration in a colorful sunrise between the sea and mountains of Yelapa—when he discovered his muse: Puerto Vallarta.
Stimulated by the people who buy and admire his work, Ximenez works with acrylics or ink on paper, cloth or wood, using both flat and round brushes. Always striving to continue learning and improving his technique, he says, “We must do what we like, even if we have not studied it, faithfully practicing every day in an effort to improve.” Having never studied art or taken painting classes, he attributes his skill with color to having watched his father work as a sign painter. Even without formal artistic training, Ximenez has gained wide recognition. For example, he took all three top places in a competition for disabled artists in Phoenix, Arizona!
However, his life plans as an adolescent were quite different. He never considered becoming an artist, much less making a living by painting. Following graduation from high school, he earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, followed by another in Law. He then went on to earn his master’s degree in Law. But he found his true calling in the world of art. “At first, painting was a hobby. Now, my hobby is going to school and studying,” says Ximenez, who is currently pursuing his doctorate.