Mexico Markets Photo Essay from Mexico Travel Photography Facebook Group

We recently completed a five-day challenge to post photos of Mexico Markets on the Facebook group page for Mexico Travel Photography. Members posted 158 photos. We have over 250 members and there’s room for many more!

Next up is a challenge for September 15 and 16: Post ONE photo to honor Mexico Independence Day. Bring out the red, white and green! Do you have something to contribute?

Here is a selection of photos from last week’s Mexico Markets challenge to tempt you to see the full display at the Facebook page site.

Ann Conway, San Cristobal de las Casas market

Ann Conway, San Cristobal de las Casas market

The Mexico Travel Photography group is a bunch of photographers from around the world who love Mexico. We range from beginners to professionals. All levels are welcome and our goal is to share, appreciate and learn from each other!

Gail Schacter, The Burden of Onions

Gail Schacter, The Burden of Onions

We all see things from a different point of view.

Melanie Schulze, Mamey fruit

Melanie Schulze, Mamey fruit

From the close-up texture of this mamey fruit with the taste of creamy yam, to the night shot below during Day of the Dead.

Deby Thompson, Night Market, Xoxocotlan, Oaxaca

Deby Thompson, Night Market, Xoxocotlan, Oaxaca

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Martha Canseco Bennetts, Peppers

Janet Paluch, By the Dozen

Janet Paluch, By the Dozen

Nick Hamblen, Roadside Market

Nick Hamblen, Roadside Market

Markets in Mexico are anywhere and everywhere, even alone by the roadside.

Hollie Taylor, Packing It Up, Puebla

Hollie Taylor, Packing It Up, Puebla

Al Stevens, San Pablo Etla Market

Al Stevens, San Pablo Etla Market

Marnie Fleming, Ropes

Marnie Fleming, Ropes

Who would have thought a tangle of ropes would make a terrific photo? Marnie!

Liz Thomas, Night Market, Xoxocotlan, Oaxaca

Liz Thomas, Night Market, Xoxocotlan, Oaxaca

This photo, above, is of the same Xoxocotlan market stall shot by Deby Thompson above. Look what Liz focused in on.

Norma Schafer, basket weaver Margarita, Benito Juarez Market, Oaxaca

Norma Schafer, basket weaver Margarita, Benito Juarez Market, Oaxaca

Margarita’s face is a constant marvel to me. I’ve been buying woven palm baskets from her for years.

Ana Paula Fuentes, Fruit and Tablecloth

Ana Paula Fuentes, Fruit and Tablecloth

The composition of this photo with the fruit tablecloth backdrop says it all.

There are many outstanding photos on the Facebook Group page I didn’t post here. This is just to tantalize you to go take a look!

Teotitlan del Valle, Oaxaca, Celebrates Her Patron Saint Today

The patron saint of Teotitlan del Valle, Oaxaca, Mexico is the Virgin of the Nativity — La Virgen de la Natividad. It is celebrated here on September 8, today.

Los Danzantes de la Pluma, Dance of the Feather, Teotitlan del Valle, Oaxaca

Los Danzantes de la Pluma, Dance of the Feather, Teotitlan del Valle, Oaxaca

There are two days of fiestas that started on September 6 with a Parade of the Canastas, this year’s group of Las Danzantes de la Pluma (Feather Dancers), and dances and fireworks last night.

Janet Chavez Santiago in the Parade of the Baskets, Convite de las Canastas, Teotitlan del Valle

Janet Chavez Santiago, Parade of the Baskets, , Teotitlan del Valle, Oaxaca

Today, starting at 1:00 p.m., there is a festival all day in courtyard in front of the church. The Dance of the Feathers is a spectacle, but it is also an important three-year commitment the young men make to the church, religious and cultural traditions of the Teotitlan del Valle.

Come see how high they leap, Dance of the Feather, Teotitlan del Valle

Come see how high they leap, Dance of the Feather, Teotitlan del Valle

Fiesta time brings live music, traditional dancing, lots of beer and mezcal, and a chance to visit one of the most beautiful villages in the Oaxaca valley.

Unmarried young women in the Convite de las Canastas, Teotitlan del Valle

Unmarried young women in the Convite de las Canastas, Teotitlan del Valle

The band is a very important part of the tradition

The band is a very important part of the tradition, with pre-Hispanic flute (left)

If you decide to spend the night, consider Casa Elena or Las Granadas B&B. Both offer wonderful hospitality.

Felipe Flores has a 2-year volunteer commitment on the village police force

Felipe Flores has a 2-year volunteer commitment on the village police force

Lupita Chavez joins the young women's processions this year

Lupita Chavez joins the young women’s processions this year

 

Flags blew in front of her smiling face at the perfect moment

Flags blew in front of her smiling face at the perfect moment

Holding up papier mache chickens, at the parade start

Holding up papier mache chickens, at the parade start

Clown serves as distraction for crowd and dancer cheerleader

Clown serves as distraction for crowd and dancer cheerleader

Pre-Hispanic Zapotec carvings embedded in church wall

Pre-Hispanic Zapotec carvings embedded in church wall

The conquerors of Mexico built churches atop indigenous temples, using the stones and carvings for foundations and to attract the people to the new religion.

Festival banners and balloons lead the procession

Festival banners and balloons lead the procession

Entering the staging area inside the church courtyard

Entering the staging area inside the church courtyard

Lining up to begin the procession through town

Lining up to begin the procession through town

Ana Paula Fuentes visited with other friends for lunch

Ana Paula Fuentes visited with other friends for lunch; at the fiesta

Janet Chavez Santiago in front of Teotitlan's church

Janet Chavez Santiago in front of Teotitlan’s church

Preciosa de Sangre de Cristo Church, Teotitlan del Valle

Preciosa de Sangre de Cristo Church, Teotitlan del Valle

Textile Fiestas of Mexico: New Guidebook for Smart Travelers

The book, Textile Fiestas of Mexico: A Traveler’s Guide to Celebrations, Markets and Smart Shopping by Sheri Brautigam and published by Thrums Books, is hot off the press. It’s a comprehensive guide to some of Sheri’s favorite Mexican textile villages and towns. I contributed two chapters!

Textile Fiestas of Mexico, book cover

Textile Fiestas of Mexico, book cover

Sheri invited me to cover Teotitlan del Valle, the Oaxaca rug weaving village where I live, and Tenancingo de Degollado, the ikat cotton rebozo weaving center in the State of Mexico, where I often visit and lead study tours. Of course, the answer was Yes!  I’m happy to say I contributed both the descriptive narrative and photography for these two sections.

Evaristo Borboa Casas, age 92, ikat rebozo backstrap loom weaver

Grand Master Evaristo Borboa Casas, age 92, ikat rebozo backstrap loom weaver

Sheri and I share our secrets with you because our first priority is to support the wonderful, talented Mexican artisans — many of whom are Grand Masters of Mexican Folk Art. Whether you join a tour or get there on your own, you want this book in your back pocket or tote bag for insider tips.

Selection of Teotitlan del Valle wool rugs from the tapestry loom

Selection of Teotitlan del Valle wool rugs from Porfirio Guttierez studio

How You Can Order the Book!

ISBN: 978-0-9964475-8-4
$24.95 trade paperback
120 pages
200 color photographs, map, glossary, and index

Buy your copy at Amazon, ClothRoads, and at your favorite Indie bookstore. Distributed to the book and library trade by Independent Publishers Group. If you live in Oaxaca, the book is soon to be available at Amate Books on Macedonio Alcala.

How to Buy in Mexico

Patrice Wynn is the Mexican distributor for Textile Fiestas of Mexico. She is also selling the book to buyers in Mexico, both at AbraZos, Zacateros 24 in Centro Historico, San Miguel de Allende, and also by mail. Please write to ventas@sanmigueldesigns.com to get details of how you can have it shipped to you in Mexico, either as an individual or as a store.

Here’s a preview of photos I contributed to the chapters on Tenancingo de Degollado and Teotitlan del Valle.

Tenancingo weaver Jesus Zarate with his amazing ikat butterfly rebozo

Tenancingo weaver Jesus Zarate with his amazing ikat butterfly rebozo

Come with me to Tenancingo, February 2-10, 2017 for an ikat textile study tour. We have a few spaces open for single and double occupancy. You’ll meet everyone I talk about in the book!

Knotting the rebozo fringes can take two or three months

Knotting the rebozo fringes can take two or three months

The beauty of the book is that you can use it when you travel independently or as a resource on a guided visit.

Weaver in the Teotitlan del Valle rug market

Weaver in the Teotitlan del Valle rug market

One-day Natural Dye Textile & Weaving Study Tour–November 3, 2017

We tell you how to get there, the best artisans (in our humble opinion) to visit and when the major festivals are scheduled.

We recommend how to negotiate purchases in the markets and from artisans in their homes. What is the fair and ethical way to shop in Mexico? Sheri explains it!

Indigo dye pot, Teotitlan del Valle

Indigo dye pot, Teotitlan del Valle

We help you discern the good from the bad, the better quality from the mediocre.

At the Sunday rebozo market, Tenancingo

At the Sunday rebozo market, Tenancingo de Degollado

And, we give you restaurant and lodging tips — because where to eat and sleep means you will have a more enjoyable experience.

Ancient Zapotec temple stone, Teotitlan del Valle Community Museum

Ancient Zapotec temple stone, Teotitlan del Valle Community Museum

Through description and photos, you can see what to expect before you get there and plan your travels so your time is well-spent.

Carding sheep wool, a woman's tradition to prepare for spinning, dyeing then weaving

Juana Gutierrez cards sheep wool, a woman’s tradition to prepare for spinning

Chapters include Oaxaca, Chiapas, Uruapan and Puebla, plus Estado de Mexico (State of Mexico). You go deep into local markets, cooperatives and regional celebrations.

Ikat rebozos by Evaristo Borboa Casas, Tenancingo de Degollado

Ikat rebozos by Evaristo Borboa Casas, Tenancingo de Degollado

Author Sheri Brautigam owned a textile design studio in San Francisco for twenty years. She has worked as an English Language Fellow for the U.S. Embassy in Mexico, and as a serious collector and purveyor of fine indigenous textiles from Mexico and Guatemala. She sells collector-quality textiles through her online shop, Living Textiles of Mexico, and writes a blog, Living Textiles of Mexico.

Explaining the symbology of the weaving patterns

Omar Chavez Santiago explains the symbology of the weaving patterns

FYI: Many of you know that Teotitlan del Valle is a town of about 6,000 people and 2,000 looms. The major “industry” here is wool tapestry weaving. In the book, I concentrate on a handful of weavers who work only with natural dyes. We are committed to promoting environmental sustainability and respiratory health.

Cleaning a rug woven with naturally dyed wool

Cleaning a rug woven with naturally dyed wool–Federico Chavez Sosa

Starts Today: Mexico Markets 5-Day Photo Challenge

Starts TODAY, Monday, September 5. FIVE-DAY PHOTO CHALLENGE: MEXICO MARKETS. All are welcome to participate at the Facebook Group Mexico Travel Photography.

This is for photography enthusiasts of all levels, including beginners. SHARE to expand participation!

Rules: 1 photo per day. Each photo must be labeled by day, ie. Day 1, Mexico Markets. Day 2, Mexico Markets, etc. with location, if you can.

Let’s see your Mexico’s Markets! And, Happy Labor Day.

Day One, Mexico Markets Photo Challenge. Benito Juarez Market, Oaxaca, Mexico

Day One, Mexico Markets Photo Challenge. Benito Juarez Market, Oaxaca, Mexico

Mexico Travel Photography: Colors of Mexico, My Set of Five

Mexican Independence Day, September 16, 1810.

Mexican Independence Day, September 16, 1810

We had a five-day photo challenge on the Facebook page I moderate, Mexican Travel Photography. I thought I’d publish the set of five photos I submitted here. Except that I couldn’t find FIVE. I only found FOUR. Oops. Lo siento.

Tlacolula Market Candy Cart

Tlacolula Market Candy Cart

I must have been too preoccupied commenting on others’ beautiful posts. So I’m adding one here, but I disqualify myself from posting for five days in a row! Counting is such a challenge.

Birthday pinatas and papel picacho, Teotitlan del Valle

Birthday pinatas and papel picacho, Teotitlan del Valle. iPhone photo.

Mexico Independence Day is coming up on September 16. It marks Mexico’s liberation from Spain after four hundred years of occupation. So many streets throughout Mexico, in all the little towns and villages, in all the big cities are named 16 de Septiembre. For good cause.

Colorful plastic woven baskets, Tlacolula Market.

Colorful plastic woven baskets, Tlacolula Market.

And, not to be confused with the Mexican Revolution of 1920-1920, or Cinco de Mayo and the Battle of Puebla, the fight again the French that became a cry for freedom by African-Americans and Mexicans living in the U.S. during the American Civil War.

Oaxaca Red casita color. With Gar Bii Dauu. Local endangered succulent.

Oaxaca Red casita color. With Gar Bii Dauu. Local endangered succulent.

I recently repainted the casita this intense red. I guess this was the photo I forgot to post to make up the Set of Five. Disculpeme.  Gar Bii Dauu is an indigenous succulent found in Oaxaca. It is a Zapotec word and endangered specie.

Coming Up: Next Mexico Travel Photography photo challenge. Join and weigh in with your choice for what subject you want represented next. Or, join and just enjoy the photography by people who share our enthusiasm for Mexico.