Morocco. This is the one place I'd like to go, ever since I was old enough to ask my father about the photographs in our family album that chronicled his travels in the Air Force before I was born. I haven't been able to find some of the photos that I remember seeing, so here are some photos of the two places he's been.
Here is a place in Rabat, where my father and his fellow Air Force friends got on the bus after flying over from the states. It's just about right, except the photos of this place he had were in black and white. They still set fire to my imagination, though. From Rabat, the boarded a train and traveled to Casablanca.
The thin, handsome guy with the blue-green eyes, third from the right is my father. They took the "cheap" train, my father said, and proceeded to spend the rest of the trip in the bar car.
So, for a short time, they soaked up the culture. An example, one of many, of the beautiful geometric tile work found in Casablanca. Then it was down to military business. Some great pictures of my father and his bunk mates having a little fun. Not to worry...no military personnel were harmed in the photographing of these images! :)
An M.P. always has to be prepared for anything!
And clearly, my father always was. He is still skinny today, even when I feed him something sweet with his coffee every Tuesday morning like clockwork! My father would often tell me of the sweet Mint Tea he drank while there, and the coffee as black and thick like syrup. From the pictures and the stories, you can see now why I am still intrigued. I will get there someday! For now, I will let my imagination, my Moroccan cook books and the photographs of my father inspire me.
To start, I received this wonderful book from my family by Dover publishing. It's a great reference for getting started with Geometric Arabic patterns.
This was the pattern I chose to draw on the goose egg. It also looked to be the simplest since this was my first time. The goose egg was then dipped into PUSA mushroom dye, and a quick dip into UGS gold so that my initial outline would not be stark white. I wanted the feel of grout lines, thus the light brown/gold color.
The pattern was drawn on my goose egg with a .05 mechanical pencil with a 2H lead. I then waxed over the lines.
Rather than dipping the entire egg into the two colors of Turquoise dye (PUSA peacock and patina), I hand painted the dye and let some of the dye pool at the edges so that it would look darker, much like the glaze on the Moroccan tile, uneven in places, but beautiful and interesting. The middle tile is PUSA blue blazes, which I had to paint over several times for it to be blue. Remember that the blues and turquoises are going over a gold/brown will never be pure blue because of the color that is reflecting underneath. Much of the tile work I have seen are in blues, greens, turquoise, mustard yellow, brown and white. I tried to capture some of that with the color combinations I have chosen.
After waxing over all of the turquoise petals, I turn my attention to the triangles left in the Hexagons. I dip the egg quickly in vinegar, and scrub with a Mr. Clean white magic eraser (I feel it is softer and more gentle than a scrub brush) so that I get truer blues without the brown/gold underneath. I rinse the egg, and start hand painting the two shades of blue dye into the triangles, again, letting the dye pool near the edges to that it looks like slightly uneven glazing.
Almost finished with the darker of the two blues. It will have to thoroughly dry before I wax over those parts.
And here is my Moroccan treasure after the unwaxing. I hope you've enjoyed reviewing the process as much as I have enjoyed making the egg. Lastly, I will have to show my father, of course, and get his opinion over a cup of coffee and something sweet!