Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Monday, April 28, 2008
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
In most of my drawings, I shy away from using greys and black and if so, only in the last phases of the drawing. For my taste, I prefer achieve a believable shadow by layering various complimentary colors to tonally achieve a grey, but becuase it is mixed with the eye, it becomes much more vibrant and believable. When I first discovered this, mostly from studying the Impressionist painters, it was an "ah-ha" moment and I saw a breakthrough in much of my own work.
- A thread on Wetcanvas discussing Munsell color theory.
- Fun and interactive site which briefly explains and demonstrates color theory (Iowa State educational site.)
- Color theory in a nutshell - great for printing and keeping!
- Color theory - some facts and thoughts on Watercolor.com, simple and easy to read with some excellent examples.
- Another Wetcanvas site, ArtSchool and loads of info on color.
We were escorted into an open courtyard in a small apartment/home/business place (some confusion on my part here, as it could have been all three). The black "ceiling" in the picture is actually open sky since the weather in Cochabamba is very temperate and lovely (think San Diego-ish).
Before the show, Felix explained the traditional clothing the performers were wearing and what each piece either represented or its purpose. (I believe the small bag is for Coca leaves.) But the colors, oh they are so rich and vibrant and are not adequately reproduced in these photos; but the Bolivian people, even in their daily clothes, do not shy away from color. Also, the men who are wearing fringe on their hats to cover their eyes are traditionally the single men. (I like to think it's so they can peek out at single women without being caught making eye contact - but that's just my idea.)
The performance was wonderful, strange and mesmerizing! They used a collection of flutes (the large items on the table that look like chair legs are actually flutes), pan flutes, drums and stringed instruments. The young woman also sang in a high, quavering and somewhat eerie voice. But it all worked so wonderfully together!
Our translator and leader, Connie, told us that the performers were very excited and nervous to be playing for Americans and that they had been rehearsing for months! That almost made me cry. To be so honored just because of where you were born and to have that fact alone carry such pretige was pretty overwhelming for me. Though I had never taken that fact for granted before, it was enlightening to experience it first hand. It made me realize what a huge responsibility that honor carries with it and that I should always do my best to use it well.
Here are some of the other audience members from that evening's performance. I'm not sure, but I believe they live in the building.
They, too, like the performers were very gracious and greeted us with kisses and then gave us the best seats in the house. But that's just typical Bolivian hospitality.
Thursday, April 17, 2008
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Monday, April 14, 2008
Here is a video of some of the children who visited us on a daily basis while we were working on the orphanage. Since we had brought lots of coloring books and crayons with us, we decided to give our new friends a few. They gladly used them but when it came time for us to leave, they thought they had to give everything back! I had to (in my VERY bad Spanish) let them know that I was too old to keep them, and that they were for children only. That convinced them. (No surpise here.) They were happy and so were we.
The next day, being a school day, I saw Gonzolo (the little guy in the yellow shirt) who told me that one of the older boys had taken his book. He looked so sad; and so I promised he'd get a new one. The next day he got the best coloring book/sticker book we had: Diego! His whole face lit up; he was very, very happy and this time, did not refuse our gift.
Unbelievably that adorable little guy is eight years old.
We now have a blog with much more information about the K'illallaray orphanage. There is also an easy donation button. Please check it out: http://boliviaorphanage.blogspot.com/ Then forward it on.
Friday, April 11, 2008
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
- Playing with the dogs, throwing lots of things for them to fetch.
- Building with Legos
- Baking brownies
- Fixing, eating and CLEANING UP from lunch
- Playing with about a million matchbox cars (I've been through two boys already)
- Eating ICE CREAM (They ALWAYS get ice cream when they come to my house.)
- More building
- Diapers (THIS I do not miss)
- Outdoor play: wagons, balls, roller skates, scooters, dogs, and a little water and mud.
THAT was just until 1:00 p.m. Exhausting and wonderful. I want to be the warm, fuzzy in their lives - no matter what. We worked on that today, I think.
One of the other highlights of my day, though, was when I just had to call my son-in-law (who thinks I'm a bit of a left-wing-hippie-kinda-person) to tell him that his two sons were dancing to Abba's "Dancing Queen" (it was on the radio, I DO not own it). He threatened to leave work, pick them up and to never let me see them again. Oh, that was rich.
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
ACEO Original Colored Pencil Drawing
K'illallaray in progess. A view, which, here in the U.S., which would be worth millions.
You can see the "laundress" in one of these photos. The water is a direct run-off from the mountains in the distance.
We did work pretty hard helping to clear an area for a small playground behind the building, moving an abundance of rocks from there to inside the building to be used as a sub-floor. We moved ton of these rocks! But, it was so cool to use what was right there as part of the building; can't imagine doing this for a new-build here.
Some of the local girls hang out with us, laughing at our attempts to speak to them. Connie, our leader, is bi-lingual, but the rest of us have limited abilities with Spanish. The girls think we are hilarious and just a touch stupid!
Lunch is brought to us at the work-site while we wash up in buckets of water brought up from the stream. Flora, one of the founders of the orphanage project and a fair trade advocate in Cochabamba, had prepared chorizo which she made into sandwiches for us while we watched, adding peppers, onions and avacado. She made sure the local kids had their share, too.
We take our few tools to one of the local houses to store for the night. And, yes, the sky really is that blue.