In the backyard of Mexico City

I did this drawing way back at the beginning of April when I was staying in Mexico City at a friends place. Absolutely loved all the colours in CDMX.

This was my second attempt of sketching outside. It´s the backyard of my friends house, where I spent the afternoon sitting on the stairs while the sun was warming my feet.

1804 St Rafael_CDMX_Melanie Franz

On the streets of Malinalco, Mexico IV

There is this absolutely lovely tiny old lady in my street. She must be 75+ and is half my size. She is there every day all day, sitting in the sun with her two dogs, selling whatever they have straight from the garden. Sometimes her friend, man about the same age, joins her for a chat.

I go almost daily to buy mangos, avocados or granadillas which I had never tasted before but now love.

1804 Malinalco street seller by Melanie Franz

At the market in Malinalco, Mexico

Every Wednesday is market day. There are plenty of street dogs around, either patiently waiting for leftovers or simply using the shade to take a nap.

Nice to see that the people and dogs at the market are very polite to each other.


Colour confusion in Malinalco, Mexico

Surprisingly no beetle in sight on this street. Also the green house is a bit too bright for my taste. But it certainly caught my attention. I prefer the other one.  Well, or I should rather say, the formerly green house.

I went for a walk this morning when I passed the house again and first I didn´t realize that it is it, and then I thought wtf am I colour blind or is my memory failing me completely!?

They have started to paint it dark red and in order to paint over the green they have smeared some yellow over it in the front… so it looks rather wild right now. I will try to capture the process maybe tomorrow.

1804 Malinalco street 2 by Melanie Franz

Same thing happened just yesterday. There is this gift shop here in my street. I took this picture last weekend.

Donkey in Malinalco

And this was when I passed the place yesterday and I thought my eyes are playing tricks on me…. wow, I felt confused.

Gift shop Malinalco

Another beetle from Malinalco, Mexico

So turns out my favourite things to draw while in Mexico are apparently beetles and dogs. Who would have thought.

This one was a real beauty in perfect condition, despite its rather odd egg shell colour.

1804 Malinalco beetle 2 by Mel Franz

beetle Malinalco

Beetles! Beetles everywhere in Malinalco!

More impressions from Malinalco, Mexico, where I am currently hanging out. I would call it the town of beetles. There is one in every street I pass. I don´t know why but they always make me smile.


Did you own a beetle? Do you want one? I certainly would like to have a red one if given the opportunity.

In Malinalco, State of Mexico

Moving on from Tulum.

After a week in La Ciudad de México (CDMX) I got to Malinalco. I had no idea what this place was about before I arrived here. 115 km south west of CDMX in the State of Mexico. Elevation 1740m, population 8000, very rural and it is considered a Pueblo Mágico…

And most importantly it has way less air pollution than CDMX which I highly appreciate and approve of.

1804 Malinalco by Melanie Franz

It is certainly very colourful. During my first walk around town.

On the beach in Tulum, Mexico II

I had to draw “bike girl”. That’s how I call her. She was part of a group of spring breakers.

I’m also trying to work on my style. What do you think?

1803 Tulum beach bike girl by Melanie Franz

On the beach in Tulum, Mexico

I feel like I should mention the beach at least once. Although I was too busy just lying there, doing absolutely nothing and loving it.

There were two big palm trees on the public beach that provided a good amount of shade. So a lot of people gathered under them.

1803 Tulum beach 2

It was also the time of spring break when I arrived there, towards the end of March. I had no idea. Luckily this public beach was relatively empty as it is rather “far off” from the resort area.

On the streets of Tulum, Mexico X

This building definitely left its impression on me as it was so blinding bright… It was hard not to notice it, especially in the bright afternoon sun. It seems to be an apartment hotel. Would you like to stay there?

1803 Tulum pink house by Mel


On the streets of Tulum, Mexico IX

One thing that struck me while wandering around was, how clean the streets are. Saw this guy doing his business on the palm tree with a can dedicated to chicle – chewing gum. On the tree beside it was a can for cigarette butts.

1803 Tulum dog by mel



On the streets of Tulum, Mexico VIII

There were not as many street dogs around as I would have had expected, but a lot of people actually have dogs. I really miss having a dog. This one was snoozing in front of a paint supply shop.

Observation: It´s too hot to move during the afternoon heat.

1803 Tulum siesta

On the streets of Tulum, Mexico VII

I haven’t seen this many VW beetles since… I can´t remember. They got rather rare in Germany and if you see them, then you never see them in anything else than perfect condition. Here, they just are. I saw several of them and they are just lovely. What do you think about them?

I´m still trying to figure out where and how much white space to leave when colouring with these watercolours…

Observation: Lots of beetles around here.

1803 Tulum beetle

On the streets of Tulum, Mexico VI

Plenty of colourful houses around here. What colour is your house or you would like it to be?

Observation: The brighter the better.

1803 Tulum Blue house

Finally finished this one.

1803 Tulum shop 3