|Maura, our hostess|
|Tzin Tzun Tzan Michoacan - Day of the Dead|
|Nestor Dimas - Purepecha|
Nestor was director of La Universidad Indigena de Michoacan and a good musician. Nestor, and his wife Maura, entertained us well! We also made a visit to Santa Clara del Cobre, a pueblo that specializes in working copper. Marie arranged to bring her workshop participants there to sketch.
|Morelia Michoacan - Oct 2011|
|Santa Clara del Cobre, Michoacan|
|Copper forge, Santa Clara|
|Riachuelo, Vera Cruz - Dec 2008|
|My sketchbook - Riachuelo Dec 2008|
|Street Musicians - Vera Cruz|
|El Tajin, Vera Cruz ruins|
|Doña Elvira 102 Yrs - Atlangatepec|
|Doña Elvira - Atlangatepec|
We spent Christmas in Riachuelo, Vera Cruz with Quena, Armelle and Ana. Marie did a portrait of Lizzet, the daughter of the owner of the hotel we were at. Riachuelo was on an estuary
in a fairly isolated area not too far from the archeological site of El Tajin. The ruins are spectacular, in a lush, tropical setting. The voladores still climb atop a very high post, and with ropes attached to their ankles, spin earthward to the sound of a wooden flute.
We also went to el Puerto de Vera Cruz a couple of times. There was always music in the streets and people dancing to el son Cubano. A real treat! Unfortunately the Zetas have now spread fear throughout the area.
We spent most of our time in our pueblo, Atlangatepec. Marie was able to get to know and sketch many of the people who lived there. Doña Elvira was a 102 year old, cigarette smoking, beer drinking, woman who still had her cigarette and beer in front of her house daily. Marie was able to get her to consent to a portrait, and while Marie sketched, Doña Elvira shared stories from her long life. That was Marie's magic, not sketching only peoples faces, but their lives.
In April 2009, we had to leave Mexico to renew our visas. We took advantage to visit Chiapas. Our most memorable time was spent on the small island of La Palma. We stayed in a very basic thatch-roofed cabin. Again, Marie's pen brought us in contact with several locals who opened their homes and their lives to us. Most notable were Manuela and her 103 year old mother, Doña Francisca.
Doña Francisca was still very alert and prepared the wood fires for cooking and helped prepare meals. While Marie sketched her, she told us stories from her life and how La Palma used to be.
The trip to renew visas also allowed us to stop in Oaxaca. A friend had organized a workshop for Marie on our way down, so we were able to spend a few days in one of the places Marie liked best.
And I will conclude with a few pages from San Cristobal de las Casas in Chiapas. It was very close to Semana Santa (Holy Week) when we were there and the streets were full of color and activity. As usual, Marie connected with a young shoe shine boy and asked permission to sketch him. He agreed and in the end Marie gave him what a shine would have cost (it is hard to shine Tevas!) He almost refused the pesos.
I could go on forever with images, and perhaps will someday when I decide how to best do a book of Marie's sketches. For now, it has been a heartfelt experience going through sketchbook pages and remembering the good times that went with them. I hope you enjoy them and much as I have.
|Jema y Rafael - Atlangatepec|
|Jema, our milk and cheese lady|
|Boat ride to La Palma|
|Doña Francisca - 103 yrs.|
|Manuela - La Palma|
|Doña Francisca - La Palma|
|One of my pages from La Palma|
|Oaxaca - 2009|
|My Oaxaca page - collage|
|Shoe shine boy - San Cristobal|
|My San Cristobal page|
|Marie in her element|
|Sketching the band - Atlangatepec|