Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Urn Before Reading and Blue Tongued Devils

Urn Your Keep
Howdy all. Just settling into Australia. Working away. Doing some sketches for Judy's Inquisition piece as well as some of my own goodies. Just finished a prototype fro my "Urn Your Keep" class. That's right...mixed media urns...or reliquaries...for you, your loved ones, or a place to keep something sacred.

I call this one Urning Rubber.
This is for those who want to be on go...even when they are gone.
I'll be doing this class in limited locations next year. Right now...

Blue Tongued Devils
Judy's Son Ari came across an interesting little guy the other day.
While taking a spa, he noticed tiny little feet.

After a few deck boards were removed we found a beautiful Blue Tongued Lizard.

He was gorgeous...and amazingly docile...and amazingly soft.

But get a load of the that is what I call BLUE...purdy.

Say hello to my little friend.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Oaxaca Part #3..the villages.

Over the last few years I've become friends with Juan Montes-Lara.
He is our guide during the Oaxacan side trips. Students love him and so we keep inviting him back. I can't recommend this guy enough. A gentle soul who knows more about Meso-American history/culture/anything than anyone I have ever met. He knows of what he speaks but he also speaks from his heart about a culture he loves.
If you ever need assistance and want some extra insight when you visit the region give him a won't regret it. Here's his info
951/515-7731 or email at

Ocotlan Market Day

The one of the first trips he took us on was to the Village of Ocotlan
This is always fun. A busy little town with a bustling market...of coarse there is another reason to visit Ocotlan.
The Aguilar Sisters.
This is the world renowned family of ceramic artists
Each with a humble little home/studio right next to the other.

A bit closer to Oaxaca in the same direction is the black pottery village of Cotoyepec.
I love going to this little shop. This is Sofia and she is in her 80', she can really pound the clay...not to mention her amazingly charming laugh. What a treat.

Of course one of the main reasons people head to Oaxaca is for the amazing cemeteries during Dia de los Muertos.

Xoxocotlan Cemeteries Oct. 31st
Lately Xoxo has become a bit crazy. Thousands of people come here to visit the cemeteries...a littler overwhelming at times. Especially when the electricity goes it did this year.
Here's St. Sebastian
It is an amazing sight with all the candles and flowers.
And music


The next day we headed on down the road to the ruins of Mitla.
As well as a very different cemetery experience. The Mitla cemetery celebrates the return of the dead during the day of Nov. 1st. The living lead the deceased with incense.

And flowers.

No trip to this region is complete without a little (or sometimes a lot) of Mezcal. Similar to tequila but not really. I love it...and doesn't always have worms in it.

Our buddy Juan made a good bar tender at the Mezcal village.
..the supply seemed unending. I even had to bring some back with me. Notice I said "had to".

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Back From the Dead Part 2: Reaper Madness

Well the photos are plentiful from the Oaxaca trip. This episode I focus on some of the interesting folks that were on the prowl for Dia de los Muertos. la Llorona (above) perhaps.

Ah yes and here is Judy and I...well I think she thinks it was me.

Typically you don't usually use the work "cute" to describe skeletons...but if the zapato fits...

She was part of the same procession.

I always suspected that Judy preferred taller

Dem Bones, Dem Bones

I got this shot just as her friend finished putting the makeup on..."are my teeth on straight?"

Mexican Zombies!!!

Dead Man Walking

Just the devil in disguise.

Marylyn and Judy sharing a little reaper.

Next installment....deMeng and class hit the some very interesting places...indeed!

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Back from the Dead...Part One: Lord of the Lightning

I'm back...from Oaxaca...that is. Another amazing time in Southern Mexico. Great folks. Great experiences. Great food. Great everything.

So in a's what happened...
Part One:
When I got to Oaxaca the Fiesta of Senor del Rayo was getting rolling...this was great. Fireworks, fireworks, fireworks. I'm a little uncertain what exactly
is being celebrated but I do know he is the lord of the lightning.
Okay, so, this isn't what he looks like...but Oaxacans sure know how to put on a party for the old Senor.
It starts with a man wearing a paper mache bull. Oh did I mention...with fireworks all over it.
Then things start to ignite...woohoo. What a job!
Next the big scaffolding gets prepared
and this too gets ignited.....let's hear another woohoo!
The sky errupts with light.
It almost looks like a scene from Frankenstein when the villagers chase him to the old windmill.
Don't you think...
And for a finale...the waterfall of fireworks down the front of the Catedral. What a way to start the trip.
Another mezcal, por favor.

to be continued.....