Imagine painting your doorway pepto pink. Imagine what it's like to open your eyes to a chrome yellow wall, and another, and another? What's not to love about the colors in the little town in Northern Mexico that we visited over the holidays? Folks in Bustamante seemed typically Northern Mexican in their conservatism; our hotel owner was more dour than debonair; the sidewalks emptied by 8 p.m. and we never did find a bar, much less the website-touted mescal factory we had read about. BUT, in color sense, the town was anything buy shy and retiring. Even with many storefronts and homes shuttered in the winter (perhaps to open come summer visits), walls were freshly painted, the door frames bright, and every possible color combination seemed to work with its neighbor -- killing the rather limited notion we seem to have for color harmonies and proper color schemes. Of course the nature played its part, as well, with pink and orange bouganvilla blooms reaching over walls, and branches laden with limes bending over porticos. Then, there were the more subtle hues of the mountains, the early huisache blooms, the clear spring waters and blue skies at the ojo de agua.
We're planning to stretch the limits of color play at my February workshop, too. "A Field Guide to Color" is coming up mid February 20-22. If you'd like a hands-on take-no-enemies time to work with color, stretching your understanding of the rules, taking on, learning then breaking them, sign up now while there's still space. For details, see the workshop page here. We'll have dye play, painting with hue and value, chakra color meditations and more. The economy might mean fewer long trips or major workshop weeklong outings for many of us artists, so I hope you'll consider this closer-to-home affordable opportunity for an intensive improvisational dye workshop with color at its heart!