Oaxaca sleeping dogsPosted: November 13, 2019
As a resident of a suburban neighbourhood where all canines are leashed, I was fascinated with the behaviour of the stray dogs in Oaxaca City, and probably could have spent my full five days drawing them. The first one that caught my eye was the one who was napping in the middle of a pedestrian street near a noisy market. Seemingly in a sound sleep as cars, delivery trucks and crowds of people circulated around him, he simultaneously jumped up and went into a full snarl as soon as another stray entered his territory. Needless to say, the other dog skulked away.
Another morning on our way for breakfast, we watched a very muscular sleeping dog on a street corner suddenly leap up and begin stalking his prey. The prey in question? A pigeon that was walking along the sidewalk. The dog slealthily followed the bird for quite some time, hoping to catch it for breakfast, no doubt. When the bird flew away, he was undeterred. He made a quick u-turn and tried to chase down a passing Toyota, narrowly escaping having his legs run over.
The dog that I finally ended up drawing was one of a group of dogs who dig themselves into the cool sand to take a siesta on the main square. They all seem very well fed and as much a part of the scenery as the balloon sellers and the tamale vendors.
A note about the materials for this sketch: I used my Etchr sketchbook for the whole Oaxaca trip. While I haven’t been working much in ink and wash these days, I find that the thick Etchr watercolour paper takes an ink line really well. Even though you can’t correct your lines (like the one across the dog’s face), I enjoyed reconnecting with my Pitt pens on this trip.