When I was in Oaxaca, we took a trip to San Martin Tilcajete to see a village of woodcarvers who made exquisite alebrijes, (Spanish pronunciation: [aleˈβɾixes]) which are fanciful hand-carved wooden sculptures made out of soft copal wood.
The hand-painted patterns were amazing on these fantastic creatures! It required a steady hand and good eyesight to create such stunningly beautiful designs such as these finished pieces:
I thought you might enjoy seeing how they were made by these very skilled artists. First the soft copal wood is carved using a machete, a chisel and a knife – such as this carver using a knife:
Details of bulls that were carved and waiting for the next step:
Once they are carved, the cracks in the wood are filled with a putty. These have been sanded and are waiting to be painted – you can see samples of the copal wood behind them. There are male and female trees with different scents and softness.
The sculptures are painted a base color(s) before the patterns are meticulously hand-painted. It was wonderful to watch them steadily paint such amazing details using vibrant colors with skilled hands:
I thought this bull was fantastic:
We got to try our hand at painting a small animal – here is my rabbit on the left – not easy to keep a steady hand! So I purchased this small lizard that someone else created…
One of the many things that impressed me about this place was the beautiful gardens that surrounded the artisans:
It was a paradise of beauty in itself – so many colors, shapes and patterns:
I hope you enjoyed my little tour! And if you would like to find out more about the alebrijes, check out this link from Wikipedia at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alebrije
Happy Doodling! 🙂
Posted in Doodles, Nature Photography, Oaxaca, Mexico Art Retreat, Painting, Uncategorized
Tagged alebrijes, Art, art retreat, Colorful, doodles, flowers, hand-painted patterns, Mexico, nature photography, Oaxaca, painting, peaceful, woodcarvers
I was inspired by the colors in Oaxaca, Mexico to create this doodle:
And by the amazing hand-painted patterns on wood – such as these Mexican whisks called Molinillos which are used to add froth to hot chocolate or milky coffee:
I will show you more about this fantastic art in my next post! 🙂
Salute! (Cheers in Spanish!)
Posted in Doodles, Oaxaca, Mexico Art Retreat, Uncategorized
Tagged Art, art retreat, color pencils, color play, creative, doodles, fun, inspiration, meditative, Mexico, Oaxaca, patterns, play, white gel pen, Zig Writer pen
I loved the hot pink Bougainvillea growing in Oaxaca! And I found a bright pink wall too…
Hot Pink! What comes to your mind when you think of this color? I’d love to hear from you!
As far as hot pink hippos… one of our drawing assignments was to draw a contour of a stuffed animal in Oaxaca. I kind of fell in love with the hot pink hippo:
Carla Sonheim taught us how to take our drawings a step further and create a colorful animal – a fun way to doodle! Here is my hippo:
Hip Hip Hoorah, it’s Saturday! 🙂
Enjoy your day!
Posted in Color, Doodles, Drawing, Oaxaca, Mexico Art Retreat, Uncategorized
Tagged Art, black micron pen, color pencils, color play, Contour drawings, creative, doodles, drawing, flowers, fun, gel pens, hippos, hot pink color, markers, meditative, Mexico, mixed media, Oaxaca, patterns, play, stuffed animals, Tombow markers, Zig Writer pen
I was really attracted to the colors on the buildings in Oaxaca, Mexico. I discovered interesting color combinations and found the colors did not have to match.
I did a loose interpretation of the buildings in collage, watercolor, color pencils and ink pen that I thought you might enjoy seeing:
And I loved the texture of this old door:
This one I did today with Neocolors, watercolor, color pencil and ink pen:
I hope you enjoyed my experiments. I’d love to know what you think!
Have a color filled Friday! 🙂
Posted in Mixed Media Collage, Oaxaca, Mexico Art Retreat, Uncategorized
Tagged Art, color, color pencils, color play, creative, experiment, imagination, ink pen, Mexico, mixed media, Oaxaca, paper collage, texture, vacation, watercolor
A page from my journal:
And here are some photos:
The breakfast table was as colorful as my beautiful surroundings:
And here is a collage I did in Oaxaca of my beautiful breakfast:
Enjoy your day! 🙂
Posted in Art Journal, Mixed Media Collage, Nature Photography, Oaxaca, Mexico Art Retreat, Uncategorized
Tagged art journal, art retreat, beautiful place, color, color pencils, creative, drawing, flowers, fun, hearts, Mexico, mixed media collage, Oaxaca, paper collage, photography, playful, table decorations, vacation
I arrived home very late last night from a FABULOUS art retreat in Oaxaca, Mexico! I have so much to share with you – but I’m still unpacking and getting caught up on sleep. Here are a couple of photos for you to enjoy:
I took more than 1500 photos of this beautiful place. I look forward to sharing my adventures with all of you!
Posted in Nature Photography, Oaxaca, Mexico Art Retreat, Uncategorized
Tagged art classes, art retreat, color, flowers, Mexico, Oaxaca, patterns, photography, vacation
Sometimes I enjoy just doodling in my art journal. Today I started with color pencils and watched as my patterns and colors filled my page. Below is one of my favorite quotes:
I used to think this quote meant OPENING my eyes where I am now – my world. Yet, I’m starting to understand that part of the discovery is EXPLORING new things…perhaps with new eyes but more importantly with an OPEN mind.
I decided to fulfill one of the items on my bucket list this year and attend an art retreat in Oaxaca, Mexico! I am so excited (a bit nervous too) and yet I am looking forward to new discoveries! Oh, the colors and patterns I will see and the creative friends I will make! 🙂
Starting this Thursday, Feb 25, I will be taking an almost two week blogging break but I hope to post some photos on Instagram as Art Jill Kuhn. I have been blogging almost every day for over a year so a little break will be nice – but I will miss all of you, my friends!
Happy Exploring! 🙂
Posted in Art Journal, Doodles, Uncategorized
Tagged Art, art journal, art retreats, Bucket List, color, color pencils, creative, drawing, experiment, exploring, inspiration, Mexico, new landscapes, patterns, quotes, travel, trees, vacation