Monday, October 29, 2007

Halloween masks

Nothing to wear for Halloween yet? No worries, your Halloween masks are here!
Pick your choice (these are downloadable PDF’s):

Halloween Pumpkin
Cantinflas, the Charles Chaplin of Mexico.
Werewolf, although a rather nerdy one
Teen Zombie
Little Witch

The Mexican Muralist Diego Rivera
Calaverita or sugar skull
Olmec head, Cabeza Olmeca, pre-Hispanic head sculpture

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


I made Luchadora while I was in Mexico this summer. I was thinking of how we all, especially women, are luchadoras, fighters, in our own way.
Luchadora wears the iconic Mexican mask of the modern hero. Yet, here she is, for the first time, taking her mask off in public.

Nothing to be shy about; she is like any other woman. She sells newspapers in the street

We are all Luchadoras!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Society of Illustrators Original Art Show

One of my favorite paintings from book Little Night in on display at the Original Art show exhibit, from Oct 17 to Nov 21.

Actually, it was also one of those paintings that made me question talents and work. From the beginning I struggled with the colors over the dark figures, and the capriciousness of the acrylics and the glazing liquids. Yet at the end I slept happy.

More questions by children

I was wearing my t-shirt dress, the one that I made by printing images of things I like. And a boy pointed at a picture on it and asked, “What is that?”
There I was happy to introduce my childhood reading: Revistas!
Some of my first literature was old revistas, magazines that my aunts and my parents bought; mostly Mexican comic books and graphic novel printed on brown paper. I had an aunt who sold them in her dark, little groceries store. The revistas were old and used, but she had a rack full of them, and every time we visited her, I spend most of my day reading the merchandise by the foot of a tree.

This year while I was in Mexico I found some of my favorites revistas back in the magazine racks of the street vendors in my hometown. I found, Revista Semanal, with dramatic stories of life, love, betrayal, and death.

Lagrimas y Risas, tears and laughs.

And my favorite of favorites, La Familia Burron, the Burron Familly, which chronicles the adventures of the Burron’s as they try to survive poverty and corruption in the slumps of Mexico City.

One of my favorite episodes was when the Burron mother, lacking food money, makes chilaquiles out of newspapers to feed the entire neighborhood. She was always a hero!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Visalia school vists and Arne Nixon Center Conference

Things that happened in Visalia andFresno:
I ate an ice cream sundae.
At one of the schools I visited they had a surprise for me: A beautiful girl in sixth grade told me I am her cousin. Her Mother is Morales, daughter of a Morales, who was related to a Morales, who died a while ago and couldn’t testify for our family relation anymore, but was my relative. I believe her!
I met Aliki. Sublime.

Things I heard in Visalia and Fresno:
“I like your teeth. I mean, the ones that are still there.” Aliki to a tooth gaped child.
“I imagine things” Karen Cushman.

Things I brought home from Visalia and Fresno:
A drawing from a boy who can’t stop drawing.
A poem from a girl.
My portrait by another girl at the library.
A handmade afghan from Kate.
A branch of cotton that George P. picked up from the fields.

One thing a teacher told one of her students really wanted to ask, but didn’t get a chance to:
“What would you like to be if you weren’t an author and illustrator?”
Here is my short answer:
A filmmaker. A Leon tamer. A landscaper. A dressmaker. A street clown. A scuba diver. A trapeze artist. A guitar player. A psychic. A dancer. A doll maker. A puppeteer. A singer. A poet.

And so, here is the poem I brought home

And a photo with Aliky taken by Kate Nelson.

Friday, October 12, 2007

In the mail today

Children Should Be Seen: The Image Of The Child In American Picture-Book Art book.

There, in page 47—Señor Calavera shyly demonstrating that sugar skeletons are part of the child in the family too.

Thursday, October 11, 2007


Reorganizing scattered papers, I was in front of the smallest of my drawings for Little Night.
It stills marvels me to find so much seed in such a little things.