Monday, December 8, 2008

Adios, Mexico

We are now home after spending two months in sunny Mexico. I'm still trying to get use to the cold. This morning it was zero (wind chill), and though the beach where I walk was as beautiful as ever, it was good to get back in the house.

Of course, I painted almost up until the time we left San Miguel, so I show here some of the sketches I brought home to either refine or repaint in my more comfortable larger sizes. I did get out with Frank Gardner a couple of more times--always great--and Bonnie visited his studio with me and fell in love with a print which we bought and which Frank is shipping home for us.

Atotonilco Gato
Oil on canvas panel 9X12

Frank took me over to this small town not far from San Miguel where there is a church that is visited by pilgrims from all over Mexico. The entire interior--walls, ceiling were painted by a preist who devoted his life to the effort. I took a number of photos including one of this church cat which emerged from the shadows to get some sun and pose for us. I haven't done many animals, but the contrasts here were so complelling, I couldn't resist.

Path to the River
Oil on masonite 8X10

On the way to Atotonilco, Frank took a back road which ran along a river. We stopped a couple of times to take photos. The wild flowers were still in bloom affording some interesting views. This is one that I found particularly attractive as there was a path apparently to the river just behind the treeline. I imagine this was used by farmers to lead cattle to a watering place.

Path to Santa Julia
Oil on masonite 9X112

I came across this while wandering around my colonia(neighborhood). Here was a field loaded with wildflowers which were so profuse that they almost hid the pathway to the adjacent colonia, Santa Julia, further up the hill. The roads are pretty steep over there, but the views back toward the city are spectacular. This means that the Americans will soon buy up the land and start moving in. Progress, I guess...

I have a lot of work ahead of me here, so I hope to be posting more regularly than I have been. The yen to get back to San Miguel will recur as the winter deepens. But that's OK--I have all those paintings started or in sketch form, so I shall revisit often, and bring you along, too.


Anonymous said...

All lovely Mexico paintings! I like each and everyone of them. Sounds and looks like you had a really nice and productive time in Mexico. Glad you returned home safe and sound.


Joanne said...

These Mexican paintings are really beautiful, Jack! I especially like the brilliant colors you have used - so accurate a reflection of the colors used in Mexican buildings and clothing. I can imagine the shock of near zero after the warmth of San Miguel (? spelling?) - winter is a shock without having been anyplace warm! Looking forward to more works like these... lovely, lovely!

Jack Riddle said...

Paz--thanks. The only thing art-wise I didn't do in Mexico was to keep up with my blog friends, a sin I will atone for this winter. A few of these paintings will serve as a basis for larger pieces I will do over the winter. I also have a number of other Mexico pictures in mind with reference photos already stored. So--I have quite a bit ahead of me!

Jack Riddle said...

Joanne--see above--plenty more to come (all from the warmth of my studio).

Gift card printing said...

Beautiful art work.

Jack Riddle said...

Gift--thanks for your visit and I was impressed by your site. Food for thought...

Anonymous said...

Happy Holidays to you and your family, Jack!


rob ijbema said...

hey jack,love your cat!
what a strong light you cought
see you around in 2009
have a good one!

Jack Riddle said...

Rob--back at you for '09 and everyone else!

Anonymous said...

Season's Greetings, Jack!


Vee ~ A Haven for Vee said...

Ahhh the colors of Mexico are delicious. I hope that you have returned...winters in Maine being so cold and miserable.

Jack Riddle said...

Vee--No--we are toughing it out through what has been an awful winter here so far. We will be here for awhile as we cancelled a trip to China we had planned for April. Looks like our first getaway will be next November when we have booked a trip to Vieques--an island off the east coast of Puerto Rico. I'm not done with Mexico though--I'm about to post a couple of new pieces conceived during our fall trip there. Stay tuned.