Open Air Studio

continued from previous post . . .

I woke on that first day in Mexico to the smell of TORTILLAS!  Remember, I told you my casita was right next to the Tortilla factory. My senses were bombarded at 6am with a pungent mixture of frying oil and salt air.

Boca de Tomatlan was slowly waking up after a long night of fiesta on the beach in front of my casita.  I don’t know how long the party went on, but I slept well and was excited for a day of art lessons from one of my favorite artists, Bob Burridge

I quickly got ready and gathered my art bag and decided to walk through the village instead of crossing the frigid river water!

After my epiphany the night before, I embraced the little village and delighted in everything around me.  “Buenas Dias,” people greeted me as I walked along.  “Hola.”  I made my way up the dusty road and found my way to the bridge that crossed Rio Horcones.

The poverty in this village was evident only to me.  I could sense that the locals were rich with the gift of simplicity.  They had all they needed and it was more than enough. My paranoia from the day before was gone – I was no longer the “gringa,” but simply a welcome visitor in their neighborhood.

Crossing the river by bridge, I discovered a whole different face to the Village.  Sweet little children in pristine uniforms and backpacks were skipping off to school.  They too had to cross the bridge to follow a jungle path up to their school on the side of the mountain.  In the States, you wouldn’t consider letting your child walk by themselves down a city street, let alone in the jungle! But this was a community of friends and families that took care of each other and they had no reason to fear anything.  It was like stepping back through time.

Arriving at the Casa de los Artistas, I enjoyed a lovely breakfast with fellow artists. After our dinner last night, we were no longer strangers, but friends about to embark on an adventure together.  I was excited and started feeling some peace in my soul in this beautiful setting.  The chatter of people mixed with the squawking birds and animals of the jungle reached a crescendo and it felt surreal as coffee was poured and juevos were placed in front of me.

After breakfast, we moved upstairs to the open-air studio – it took my breath away.  I couldn’t imagine any place better to try to reignite my creative spirit.

I settled into my “spot” for the week and couldn’t wait to start!

Scenes from My Sketchbook

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