Monday, April 11, 2011

Guest Blog from Mexico

I have recently calculated that between my husband (AlejandroLinaresGarcia)and I, we have uploaded about 9,000 photographs into Wikimedia Commons related to Mexico over the past couple of years. It has come about through a convergence and compatibility of interests. Ive been in Mexico for about seven years and for this American at least, it really is a case of “so close, and yet so far.” Nothing shows the better than the Mexican attitude towards death -- thought of as a living being (Santa Muerte at right) and something to celebrate (Day of the Dead in the cemetery/atrium of the San Andrés Mixquic church below)


Mexico is right next door, but historically and culturally it is a world away, which gives it a kind of mystery. This is especially true for Mexico City and the highlands in the center, which is off most people’s beaten tourist path. One unknown is the Carnival of Huejotzingo, Puebla pictured below where many kilos of gunpowder are burned over four days....


Making use of our weekends, my husband, a Mexican and an artist, and I began exploring towns and other areas in and around Mexico City where we live. On vacations we can go a bit farther, say to the Costa Grande of Guerrero or to Chiapas, which we will do next week. Between this, the love of detail and the blessing of digital photography, we have no trouble snapping hundreds of pictures at a time, like we did in the Sierra Gorda in Querétaro (mission church  in Concá below).


Instead of just keeping the photos somewhere, or even having a personal account such as Flickr, it seems only natural to upload them into Wikimedia Commons. I have been writing about Mexico in English Wikipedia since 2007, trying to understand what I see and experience. Articles about places NEED photographs, or it’s just a wall of text. While loaded with texts, articles such as Taxco, Traditional fixed markets in Mexico, Franciscan Missions in the Sierra Gorda and Casa de los Azulejos, Mexico City would simply not be appealing without images. Now if I could only find a way not to spend HOURS and HOURS uploading images one at a time….
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