Café Crem

Art, Music and Words around The Coffee Table

Love Mugs

By Miki de Goodaboom

As I said in my last post, I have decided to reconnect with Cafe Crem, our wonderful Cyber Cafe for artists, musicians, photographers and writers. I hope I won’t be the only one here, although I know, as a very wise friend of mine said:

“Don’t expect too much from people!”

Anyway I just checked and saw that the last mug painting I published was my “Mobile Mug” on the … 12th of September 2010! My God, I can’t believe it is more than 3 years ago! Shame on me! But at least I was not inactive in that time, and my love of mugs is still alive:  I have painted some new mugs from our fantastic and always growing mugs collection. Also, during a quite recent painting trip to Cyprus,  I started a series of sketches showing the coffee mugs we get when we have a coffee break  while we are travelling around.

So, speaking of love, there is nothing more natural than starting with my “Love Mugs”, a gift from Kevin to me for Valentines 2012.

Love Mugs S

I really adored them, they are just like Kevin and me: happy, funny, intertwined and…

hearts all over and around us!


November 26, 2013 Posted by | Art, Cafe L'Arte, coffee, culture, drawing, fun, love, Miki's Paintings | 1 Comment

The Irina Bloom Mug

By Miki de Goodaboom


Is anybody out there?

here is Miki… not sure if anybody is still around in our lovely Cyber Cafe “Cafe Crem”… probably not… except of course Kevin, who apparently comes here from time to time and tells the world about his music and the music he loves!

Well, I personally haven’t come for ages… there is nothing more depressing than an empty Café, and I had no idea how to try to bring it to life again. At the occasion, apart from Kevin, I would like to thank Shelley with all my heart, who has been so faithful and active all the time, from the very beginning…

Shelley… are YOU there?

I have a very special reason to come back today, but I hope I will come more often again. Since my last post, I have painted many new mugs, and I will gradually publish them here, together with their little story. But for now I want to present you the “Irina Bloom” Mug.

Irina Bloom Mugs

Irina Bloom is the heroine of the new book with the same name of Brazilian author Tamara Ramos. And is as well a painting by me. If you want to know how my girl landed on the cover of Tamara’s book, please go and read the story in my main blog. You can also read l’histoire d’Irina Bloom en français if you don’t understand English or find French language sexier!  🙂

Here is my original painting

Irina Bloom The Blond Rebel XS

As usual: mugs are a wonderful personalised gift, and Christmas is coming… does it ring a bell? So, if you want to purchase an Irina Bloom mug, please go to

Tamara Ramos Virtual Lounge

So, this is it for today. Kevin and I would love to hear again from any of our Cafe Creamers if you are around. And if you have a new mug, with an interesting mug story, or anything else interesting in your life, just come to Cafe Crem and let us know!


November 24, 2013 Posted by | Art, Cafe L'Arte, Cafe Literati, Christmas, coffee, culture, literature, Miki's Paintings | Leave a comment

Here comes the mug !

I know, it’s about time that my mugs and me make a new appearance in Cafe Crem!

It has been such a long time since my last mug painting, I guess the last one was the Memphis mug about 6 months ago? Something like that. Not that I love my mugs less, or find them less ‘paintable’, I was just busy with some other motifs.. and some other people.

By the way I want to thank Shelley and Danu who joined me on Easelspace, this artist community from which I have been part of the co-hosting for some months now. I am glad to have them with me there, it makes me feel home. As well as Kevin of course, who is also a quite active member there, with his art work and with the poems he writes inspired by some Easelspace artists’ paintings.

Anyway, here comes the new mug…

be careful and keep out of his way, he is coming very fast!

Mobile Mug

By the way: “Mobile Mug” was a gift from Kevin… I was sad that day, he went out and came back with Mobile Mug for me… that mug was really full of love – even though it’s expression might not convey it!   🙂

September 12, 2010 Posted by | Art, Cafe L'Arte, coffee, drawing, Miki's Paintings | , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Miki’s got a brand new bag

Eventually I found the bag of my dreams!

When I go sketching outside -which is something I do very often-, I always take the minimum amount of stuff: a sketching book and a pen. But there is a problem:  I like my big sketching book. Well, not that big, 40 x 40 cm, plus the spring along the top, but just big enough so as not to fit in any bag. Well, I bought one once in a German art shop, but it was all black, so serious. It makes me sad just to look at it, no way I can use it to go and sketch, where I do need to feel in a positive state of mind!

I couldn’t believe my eyes as I saw this one in a Cafe-Shop in Bubion, a little village from the Sierra Nevada some days ago. Not only does my sketch book fit in it exactly, but the bag is soooo cool, so artistic. More or less like in this painting I did of it. Lovely, crazy bag, isn’t it?

Well, I will use the occasion to introduce you to our new Easelspace gallery. In the last 3 weeks, I presented here

Travelscapers (landscapes from all around the word)

Easelfaces (portraits and figures from around the world)

Now we have just launched our

Still LiFe gallery

All sorts of still life from international painters will be presented here. if you want to join one of these galleries, we must charge 10 dollars the year for one  (15 for 2, 20 for 3). We have a lot of costs and work with all these sites, hence the fees. But we are doing a great deal to gradually increase the value of and the visits to, these galleries, and aiming to be one day, as soon as possible, among the most visited online galleries for people searching for landscapes, portraits or still lifes.

But if you can’t afford the membership to our special galleries you can still join us at Easelspaces, the “mother” gallery. Mother is generous and doesn’t cost anything 🙂 .

We are a nice community of international artists (amateurs, semi-professionals and professionals) gathered on that great site created by artists for artists, and offering many possibilities for presenting your art and developing a nice relationship with other artists from the world.

July 31, 2010 Posted by | Art, Cafe L'Arte, Miki's Paintings, news, painting, personal | 3 Comments

Travelscapers: Around The World in Arty Days…

I don’t know how it is with you, but me, I have so many travel plans and dreams in my head that 10 lives would not be enough to fulfil them! My dreams have always been for example, to go to Siberia, China, India, Peru, The Moon… I will certainly do what I can to realise some of them, but for many obvious reasons, not all will be possible. But when one can’t really travel, there is a way to visit places without spending too much money or time, and it is ART. I do love to look at beautiful photos from far away countries, and of course, even more than photos, I adore  paintings featuring the beauty of all the places and people in our world.

This is why, Adrian Durham and me have started a new project, called Travelscapers. Our aim is to exhibit on our platform as many paintings from around the world (scapes, towns,  nature, people, folklore) as possible, the challenge being to gradually cover the globe with paintings, according to the motto:

“”Around the world in Arty days” is a site for artists and art lovers, run by artists. I would love to invite painters from around the world to join us. Well, when I say “invite”, it is not quite true.Unfortunately to run such a site costs money, and much time. We can offer our time, but for the rest we will have to charge a fee of 10 $ per year to be a member of travelscapers,

But think about it: together we are much stronger. The chance that our works get found and purchased on the net is much higher on big artists community sites than on private artists sites. We will do all the necessary work to get as much traffic as possible there. And anyway, I know from my own experience that there is an incredible amount of people around the world who search for paintings from the places where they live, where they have been on holiday, or from where they dream of. Travelscapers will become THE place where they will go, as soon as we have a very representative amount of paintings from around the world.

If you want to join us in, exhibiting your paintings and travel sketches of places there, leave a comment here, or contact me at

or simply go to travelscapers and register!

by Miki

June 22, 2010 Posted by | Art, Cafe L'Arte, drawing, Miki's Paintings, painting, travel | 9 Comments

The Pink House

Today after swimming -we drive everyday to an indoor pool to swim 1000 metres and keep fit…- Kevin said to me:

“I have a surprise for you!”

and instead of driving home he took the opposite direction. Now, I love surprises, but I always try to find out beforehand what the surprise is. And Kevin normally can’t resist to all the charm,-and blackmail if necessary, I use to find out and  eventually tells me. But this time, although I tried hard all the way, he kept his mouth shut, mysteriously smiling.

“Serious stuff…” I thought, a little bit worried.

After a 20 km drive, we arrived in a place called “La Concepcion”. Kevin suddenly braked, entered a big wild patio and said:

“I bought it for you, to match your Converse Pink Bag!”

You certainly can imagine my surprise…

Above all when I visited the house…

The toilet… a double one of course, installed outside, because the weather is so good around here… logical, isn’t it?

And the living room, outside too

and the bath too…(well, the boat is so old , it will naturally let the water in!)

and, perhaps the most exciting part, the swing set which, you might recognise, is in fact a plane!

So, what do you think, isn’t it a wonderful surprise?

And doesn’t it fit great to my pink Converse Bag?


PS: it is a joke of course, Kevin did not buy the house for me… but the house does exist and we have been there today!

May 30, 2010 Posted by | Art, humor, life, personal, travel | , , , , | 4 Comments

Observations on a Cultural Distinction, or, stay ON my bloody car!

Reading Kevin’s new post about cultural distinctions, I was suddenly reminded of some photos I took earlier this year. I was sitting at my computer, working, and  regularly glancing through the window in front of me… I love to work and simultaneously keep an eye on what is going on in the world around me… but NO , I am not one of these women who are spying their neighbours from behind the curtains… no curtains anyway, the view is too beautiful!

That day I couldn’t believe what I saw. Judge for yourself

In the background of the picture you can see our lovely toy car by the way, the one which was mishandled by the other Spanish child this morning…

As you can see on the following photo, the Dad is not bothered at all!

I watched the scene for a little while, thinking that the Dad eventually would get the child down from the car, but no… then I went back to my work, but 10 minutes later I looked up again and this is what I then saw

In fact the little boy had been joined up there by an older girl! Unfortunately I was too slow, and only made a photo as she was about to leave the top of the car. But I swear to you that she was standing up there with the boy some seconds before!

And when you look at this last photo you really think that the whole company would probably end up on the top of the car and have a picnic up there!

All this (and many more things I have observed here in Spain in these last 53 years) leads me to think that Spanish people don’t care at all for property, neither others or their own. Meaning that the cultural difference is perhaps much deeper than Kevin thinks….


May 22, 2010 Posted by | Art, children, culture, travel, writing | 4 Comments

My First Memphis Mug

Next step in my travel diary in mugs… Memphis!

We got this mug at the Information centre about 20 miles away from Memphis, coming from Nashville along the Music Highway. It was the first time that we had entered such an Information centre, and I must say that You Americans make a great job of these places. Later on on the trip we would always go to these centres before we arrived to our destination, mainly to ask for city and road maps, which are provided for free and with a big welcoming smile… some of these places offer the visitors  some free coffee too… simply amazing! One really feels welcome and cared for… what a difference to the treatment we are used to in our modern touristic Spain!!!

Before I went to Memphis, I did know something about the town, and not only that I had heard the name before ( not like with Nashville, see my last post “Starbucks Mug Nashville”). As far as I remember I had heard it for the first time in a Spanish bar in Benidorm, many years ago, where an English singer was singing for the tourists, one of the songs being “Walking in Memphis”. I loved the song and since then, I had always dreamt to go to Memphis… the power of music! Also, I knew that the Mississippi runs through the town… the Mississippi, such a wonderful name to my French ears, enough to feed another romantic dream: to see the Mississippi! But this is about the sum of my own Memphis knowledge! As we had planned the trip, Kevin had told me that Memphis is deeply connected to Elvis Presley, to B.B. King and to Martin Luther King. But frankly, I had no idea how!

Anyway, as I saw that lovely mug there in the centre, I could not resist, I had to get it.  Kevin was not that happy about my choice, he thought it was quite kitschy, and he might be right, but I love it! And today I can say, that I drink my milk coffee out of it with a big pleasure… kitsch or not, the mug has its place in my heart! One can’t really see it on my painting, but it has some relief on it, and some musical instruments are flying through the sky… on the other side of the mug! If you want to see them, I guess you will have to buy the mug… by the way cheaper in downtown Memphis than in the centre  🙂 (I ‘m glad I bought it there though, the lady was so nice!)

March 17, 2010 Posted by | Art, Cafe L'Arte, Miki's Paintings | , , , , | 10 Comments

Starbucks Mug Nashville

As I wrote in my last post, “A suitcase full of mugs”, we have brought 15 new mugs from the USA, and I have the intention to show them all here in Cafe Crem…  a kind of belated travel diary in mugs!

After some painful hours spent  in JFK New York, our first real stay in the USA was in Nashville, where we stayed from the 9th until the 16th of January 2010. I will be honest with you: before we planned the trip some months ago, I had no idea where Nashville was, neither had I heard about it! And I guess I am not the only one in Europe. As we first went to a Spanish travel agency to book the flights, the woman, who had been recommended to us as a specialist in organising trips to the USA and from city to city there, had never heard of Nashville either. And in Madrid, at the airport, by the passport control, the guy asked me which was our destination, and when I said “Nashville”, he looked at me very suspiciously. He asked again, and his eyes turned black.  Then he asked to see my boarding pass, saw “New York”, and said to me:

“You mean New York?”

with an ironic smile, meaning: you are not even able to say New York well! Not wanting to create more problems then we already had, I said yes, of course, New York…  I also think then, within my generally well- and world-educated family nobody knew what or where Nashville was, but well, it is well known that French are bad in geography, supposedly believing that they are La Grande Nation  in the centre of the Universe and there is nothing else for miles around…

Except the fact that the word Nashville was the first time I heard it, Nashville itself was for me a first time for many things. It was my first town in the USA (New York does not count, we were just in the airport). It was also the first time that I saw some skyscrapers which I really found beautiful. Until that moment, skyscrapers were for me awful boring cold buildings lacking any aesthetics.  But the AT&T building in the painting was a real beauty to my eyes.

It was also the first time that I went to a Hard Rock Cafe. Kevin has at home a proud collection of Hard Rock Cafe memorabilia, especially T’Shirts, and he always told me about them. He also spoke passionately about the food there, and he could not wait to go there. The first day in Nashville, an awfully cold day, so cold that the water pipes had fractured downtown, we accidently stood in front of the Rock Cafe, and we were both very excited. No doubt that we had to enter it at once. Well… I was quite disappointed, I must say. It was a very modern design, and I was expecting a place with a lot of atmosphere. Then, the coffee we ordered was cold, and we had to get it replaced. Kevin got some cookie if I remember well, it was nice he said, but all together I found it very expensive for what it was and not really exciting. Honestly, it was not at all what I was expecting… so much so that it would be much later on the trip that I was ready to again enter a Hard Rock Cafe!

Nashville was also the first time that I heard Country Music live, and although I generally don’t like country music, I must say that it is quite a difference to hear it live. I simply enjoyed it

Nashville was the first town I saw with so many churches… amazing! They are everywhere, and have such incredible names!

I guess there were many other ‘firsts’ in Nashville -certainly some of the fast food chains Kevin was dreaming about when we were in Spain… Ihop, for example… Taco Bell…

And more important than anything, Nashville was the first time I met American people. And I can say only one thing: you guys are great, so naturally welcoming… I loved that!

And concerning Starbucks Nashville: we just entered one of the places to buy the mug, we didn’t have any coffee there, and today I can say that I am glad about it. Starbucks coffee is not made for my tummy, as the following weeks will gradually show! But at least I love their mugs.

By Miki

March 13, 2010 Posted by | Art, Cafe L'Arte, coffee, culture, Miki's Paintings, travel | , , , , , | 3 Comments

A suitcase full of mugs

Hi.. it’s me, Miki… you remember?  🙂

Well,” mieux vaut tard que jamais”, we say in my country, better late than never! I haven’t been around here in Cafe Crem for ages (there were many reasons for that), but I am today very thankful to all the people who, despite of the low activity, have kept the site alive: Kevin, of course, who never stopped to share with you the great moments of our life, Shelley & “Jr”, Michael, Sitting Pugs… to be honest I have no idea who else is really still around, so, whoever you are, thanks for still getting your cup of coffee from us..

I haven’t read them all, but I know that Kevin has regularly written posts about our stay in the USA. For my part, I haven’t written anything, neither here nor anywhere else, my whole writing activity in these 2 last months having been reduced to 4 postcards I sent to my parents, with more or less the words : “Tout va tres bien. Bises. Miki&Kevin”. and to a few obligatory mails… never have I been so far from getting the Nobel Price for Literature, I guess…

Anyway, I am back now, although I can’t say for how long. But my intention is to exhibit in Cafe Crem the 15 mugs we brought from the States. Yes, 15 mugs, from many of the places we have been! We even had to buy a new suitcase to bring them back.

As Kevin told in his first post, our flight to Nashville turned into a nightmare, and instead of flying via Dallas, we flew via New York. In spite of the long queues there and the endless security checks, we had some time left to look around and search for some comfort (we were exhausted!). Kevin found at once a Starbucks Cafe, and the first thing I saw there was a beautiful mug featuring New York. What a great memory of this forced stay in JFK, we thought, and without a second of hesitation we bought it! This was the beginning of our USA collection… at that point we wondered if other big towns we would visit would have their own Starbucks mug, and one of our first tasks each time we arrived in a city, was to look for them. You’ll see if we found some.. at least if the blues does not catch me and I give up my project to show you the whole USA collection!

Anyway, here it is. As always with my mugs, it looks a little bit wild and untamed… and the colours are different… I really could not use my usual warm colours for this painting as it was awfully cold as we landed in New York, it did not feel right!

by Miki

March 9, 2010 Posted by | Art, Cafe L'Arte, coffee, culture, drawing, Miki's Paintings, painting, travel | , , , | 8 Comments