Office swap meet posters

A small and delightful project: drawings for the office swap meet (which I’m also organising). My dayjob office is by far the most diverse place I’ve worked, but there are still subcategories of colleague. So I wanted to draw people who’d look like real colleagues… but not exactly like any one colleague. I think one or two (or three) did end up being very close to real individuals. I’ll see if they spot themselves!

DressesSweater

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Mo tools, mo joy!

Zapatista women’s festival

7000 women make a noise like a low-frequency beehive. Every morning when we crawled out of our tents in the freezing, clear air, the hum was already going and it kept getting stronger as more people woke up and started looking for breakfast. The festival was organized by the Zapatista movement and hosted by Caracol 4 in Morelia. Nobody knew quite what to expect. I arrived with a contingent from Ama-Awa, the women agroecologists, carrying tents, food and water for three days. We were pleasantly surprised to find abundant flushing toilets, food outlets (although the queues did stretch out), showers and drinking water taps… all without the presence of a single man. And no alcohol either. My friend’s ten-year-old daughter could attend any session she liked without her mum having to worry. And there was plenty to choose from, ranging from lectures on land rights, Indigenous lesbianism, masculinity in childhood to art, dance and theatre and workshops for making reusable menstrual pads. And a Colombian batucada.
I sketched participants during the lectures, amazed at the sheer range of women there… tall, short, skinny, round, old, young, lawyers, hippies, gorgeous, ugly, of all colours, made-up and rolled-out-of-bed. Here are some of them.

History of the festival: http://luchadoras.mx/mujeres-zapatistas/

Amazing photos by Trasluz photographers 

Cancuc zapatista with daughter
At the opening ceremony

 This was just one of the hardcore women who brought their babies to the event and stood with them in the hot sun for hours during the first day’s plays. Wearing layers of heavy clothing and knitted black balaclavas.

WimminCompress25
Tostada seller
WimminCompress3
Smoking and chatting
WimminCompress4
The Danish delegation

 

Sketch of the day: Tenejapa carnival

The week-long carnival in Tenejapa in the Chiapas highlands includes several colorful elements, such as this “chasing of the cow”. The men dress in red ceremonial finery and, among other things, chase a woven-mat “cow” around the town plaza. (Later there’s “chasing the bull” at another plaza, looking exactly the same as “chasing the cow”, but at that event cameras aren’t welcome… so I figured sketchpads aren’t either). It’s a day full of symbolism and prehispanic references and local pride – also lost of whooping at jokes. It’s very contagious and after we left we spent the rest of the day going “i-e-e-e!!”

Tenejapa001
Special costume including a stuffed ocelot.
Tenejapa002
Even though he was standing still it was hard to get all the textile detailes!
Tenejapa003
The procession’s drummer.
Tenejapa004
The “cow”!
Tenejapa005
Ocelot man from another angle.

Zapatistas and zapaturistas

Some sketches from the art festival CompArte at the zapatista centre Caracol Oventic. The festival took place for a week at the campus of CIDECI with concerts, changing art shows, workshops, documentaries and theatre; and at the weekend there were performances at Oventic too.

barrier
EZLN soldiers holding the crowd barrier

An intrigueing experience for sure. This time I had a bit more time for sketches as most people stayed put watching the performances of theatre, dance, poetry and music.

bailable
A “bailable” dance

The girl band – like all the zapatistas, wearing Indigenous traditional dress and balaclavas – were a riot of energy and power.

singer
Zapatista girl band singer
bassist
Zapatista girl band bassist

As always, people couldn’t resist filming instead of watching. Or, in my case, drawing.

filming
Filming
audience
Spectators
ears
Ears
sketches-july-ezln1
EZLN soldier holding up a crowd barrier

Adults’ colouring in

I took a pile of my colouring-in pictures to a work party recently, reasoning that not everyone would like to join the bachata class or read a poem and this could be  a nice activity for the less extroverted of us. It worked a treat! The table with the pictures and box of coloured pencils quickly became a centre for chatting and colouring.

I was also surprised over how different everybody’s style was. Antonio started by colouring the whole elephant an even grey, according to me the most boring part of the picture. Lupe coloured all the shoes and was the only one who finished in the sense of covering her whole picture in colour. Giovanna added patterns and psychedelic details to the forest scene. Both she and José Luis gave the little girl in the picture a green or blue elf skin tone. I think this could be a hit at other events too. party-colouring-chayoparty-colouring001-compressed3party-colouring001-compressed1

 

 

Your organisation’s holiday card

Soon you need to send out electronic Christmas/holiday cards to your stakeholders. How about a personalised one from Development Cartoons? I can make a lovely watercolour or cheeky vector graphic customised for YOU. The card can jog memories of important milestones (plus falling snow), celebrate good achievements (by serene candlelight), express you vision & mission (plus reindeer)…Your people will remember your organisation best if you make them smile!

Lessons and commitments graphic recording

All We Can gathered the participants’ learning and commitments from their partnership conference using a method called cascading, or the snowball, or, we decided, the River. In this exercise, people think individually at first and then gather in increasingly large groups to select the best contributions. At the end, about ten peoples’ thoughts have been distilled into ten points. I drew the process explanation diagram and also the final result… Here’s the resulting poster, drawn live in the session!

Ethiopia field trip

coffee ceremony

Ethiopian schoolkids

These guys were watching us visit the beekeeping centre. They work for ADHENO, but Tarike is the kebede (village) manager.
These guys were watching us visit the beekeeping centre. They work for ADHENO, but Tarike is the kebede (village) manager.

The All We Can partnership conference involved a field trip to two of their Ethiopian partner organsations. I went to ADHENO’s project where they’ve spent twelve years developing conservation agriculture and reforestation. We saw beekeeping, the fuel-efficient stove workshop and the church where the project began. A great day with great people.

Graphic recording at SOCLA – relatorio gráfica SOCLA

Friday saw Development Cartoons amid professors, farmers and students, and combinations of all three, at the 5th Latinamerican Conference of Agroecology, SOCLA. I provided the graphic recording for the agroecology team from ECOSUR in Mexico during a brainstorming session about key factors of success in agroecology projects. Here’s the result!

Drawn during the 'sharing in plenary' stage of the workshop.
Drawn during the ‘sharing in plenary’ stage of the workshop.
With the ECOSUR team post-workshop
With the ECOSUR team post-workshop

Festival session in – Batman!

This month sees Development Cartoons in action in Turkey. Here are some photos from the end-of-project festival of ‘Start with Sports‘ in the delightfully named city Batman. 400 project-participant kids had to be entertained and edified and I, with Eija and Cihan on the team, ran a series of 20-minute sessions for them on ‘Drawing sports’. We used stick figures to draw action poses. The sprogs behaved admirably well and produced some expressive football, basketball and badminton drawings.

Heads down - there's only ten minutes to draw!
Heads down – there’s only ten minutes to draw!
Development Cartoons in action!
Development Cartoons in action.
Not enough space at the big tables for the whole group!
Not enough space at the big tables for the whole group…
Over-shoulder peek
Over-shoulder peek

Batman 8

Drawing materials after the end of the festival.
Drawing materials after the end of the festival.

Sports festival signs ready

My Inkscape illustrations for the ‘Social Inclusion through Sports‘ project’s summer festivals are done and printed! Here’s a pleasing photo of what it looks like in real life. The good people at Sports Inclusion have printed eight of these.
Hockey on rollup