Category Archives: inspiration

Inspriation: Zapotec Designs

We spent Sat­ur­day with our friend Demetrio Bautista Lazo the weaver. In addi­tion to eat­ing too much. (Gra­cias, Mari­bel por la comi­da muy deli­cioso!) We went walk­ing around the town of Teoti­t­lan.

That’s Demetrio show­ing me a tree of life rug that he’s work­ing on.

my friend demetrio bautisa

This the dome of the local church..

the church in teotitlan

As was com­mon when con­struct­ing colo­nial church­es the walls were built using the stone from the exist­ing Zapotec build­ings. Some parts of the plas­ter of the new walls has been removed and the designs on the old stones are vis­i­ble.

I’ve fooled around with try­ing to com­plete some of the geo­met­ric designs. There’s usu­al­ly not enough of the pat­tern to be cer­tain of how the whole was put togeth­er. Though as I col­lect more exam­ples I think I will find enough frag­ments to recon­struct some of the lin­ear designs. (Click on the thumb­nails for larg­er ver­sions.)

These two seem sim­i­lar and may be relat­ed enough to make a larg­er pat­tern out of:

triangle and sawtooth design 1triangle and sawtooth design 2

Two wavy pat­tern that remind me of the snail pat­tern used in some of the rugs.

horizontal waves patternvertical wave pattern

This sec­tion of the wall con­tains sev­er­al small bits of pat­tern and the image of a bird­like crea­ture. The dia­mond pat­tern in the low­er cen­ter is very com­mon in rugs. I’ll have to ask Demetrio if he knows who the bird is.

bird creature and smaller geometric fragments

A final pic­ture of sev­er­al very small frag­ments. I am sus­pi­cious of the flow­ery vine chunk in the upper left. It’s too nat­u­ral­is­tic to be Zap­totec, per­haps it is a bit of some ear­li­er church or chapel., or bit of this church reused in mak­ing repairs.

several unrelated small fragments

edit­ed 25.june.2008 to cor­rect image links

One of My Favorite TV Shows from Way Back

Back in the day (new­ly mar­ried) the DH and I used to watch a lot of the dis­cov­ery chan­nel. One of the most charm­ing shows was The Secret Life of Machines.

rug beating for fun

Every­day items like vac­u­um clean­ers, wash­ing machines, and quartz watch­es explained by decon­struc­tion and wacky lit­tle ani­ma­tions. A lit­tle like the David Macaulay books.

The full 18 episodes of the Secret Life of Machines is now avail­able online at The Secret Life of Machines web­site. Also be sure to fol­low the link to Oth­er Hunkin Sites for more car­toony good­ness from the cre­ator.

BTW: there’s a cool site for the David Macaulay’s The Way Things Work book as well. Love those mastodons!


There’s an mag­a­zine called Anten­na, that show­cas­es “street wear” Some­thing that, as a mid­dle aged white lady, I know lit­tle or noth­ing about. How­ev­er, the mag­a­zine is a trea­sure trove of images of things (shoes, sweat­shirts, tooth­brush­es(?)) laid out against a white back­ground.

magazine photos of sneakers

Each issue has sev­er­al pages of — shoes.

Some of which were cut out and attached to a mod­el of an accor­dion fold book­let with a pock­et turn-up on the bot­tom that had then had a bunch of tri­an­gle pop-up sup­ports fold­ed in.

pink popup of shoes that kick

If manip­u­lat­ed care­ful­ly the shoes kick in and out. I feel anoth­er book com­ing into focus. Though per­haps with­out the hot pink back­ground. Or maybe…

Words Found Today

In the cor­ner of the page con­tain­ing a pat­tern for cut­ting out a joint­ed paper doll.

1. Enlarge or reduce tem­plate to desired size.
2. Cut out.
3. Embell­ish and attach pieces togeth­er.

I think these may be the lost direc­tions for life.