Ojo de Dios…or…Eye of God

My mother was an avid reader so I’m sure she knew whatever she had to know before making these Ojos…..or, Ojo De Dios…meaning Eyes of God. The God’s Eye is symbolic for the power of seeing and understanding that which we do not know or that is unknowable. The four corners are for the natural elements: earth, fire, air and water.

Originally, Ojos came from the Huichol peoples of northwestern Mexico. In this culture, when a child is born, the central eye is woven by the father and then one eye is added for every year of the child’s life until they reach the age of five.

The ones my mother made are quite small, all being around four inch square and were made specifically for Christmas tree decorations. She used popsicle sticks for the first ones she made, then she used short dowel rods. She made several larger ones too, a couple of which got destroyed in the two times I moved. I will take photos later of the few remaining larger ones I have.

I don’t know the meaning, if there was one, for the colors she chose in making her Ojos. She and I were much alike and maybe she just chose colors she liked. However, when I paint, I sometimes research the meaning of a certain color I’m going to use. I don’t know if she did the same.

I scanned these Ojos in as they are flat enough to go on my scanner, however, I’m a bit perplexed all the colors are not as they truly are. There is a pink one that is NOT pink. The color is more a fluorescent orange rather than pink. Not sure why the scanner picks up pink.

For storing these Ojos, I am going to have to start using some kind of moth repellent as a few of them are starting to come apart. It would be a shame to lose them.

About pam

I am retired from real 9 to 5 jobs. I do my artwork and occasionally write poetry. In September 2010, I moved to Fargo, ND after spending 60 years in Phoenix, Arizona. Now, five years later, July 2015, I'm back in Arizona. And yes, I love the heat!
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36 Responses to Ojo de Dios…or…Eye of God

  1. ellinidata says:

    Marry Xmas Pam,thank you for a lovely post,the pictures tell a colorful happy story of their own 🙂

  2. PainterWoman says:

    Thanks Angeliki. Yes, she enjoyed making these very much. I'm hoping to preserve them for many years but the yarn seems awfully fragile.

  3. ricewood says:

    Interesting that these native Americans made eyes for their children. I know that children in Turkey – and probably other places too – receive eyes made from other materials. I do not know the proper English word for the technique, but it's made of paint on metal which is fastened and hardened in a very hot oven.I've been told that the eyes are supposed to be on the lookout for evil spirits.

  4. DBabbit says:

    Those are beautiful, Pam! Maybe you could mount them on acid-free paper inside glass-covered shadow boxes?

  5. PainterWoman says:

    Allan, I'm wondering if that's an enameled technique…Oh I know there's another word for it. I'll think of it in a few minutes. I keep thinking Cloisoinne (sp?) but I don't think that's the right word. I like the idea of looking out for evil spirits. Denise, I may mount the larger ones…we'll see. Right now, the few I have on my walls are covered with dust. I'm going to have to be very careful in cleaning them. Once they're clean, they will be covered behind glass. The little ones are going to be used for several more Christmases. After this Christmas, I'll store them in plastic sandwich bags as before, but put cedar chips in this time to keep the moths out. In a few years, I'll mount the little ones and put them behind glass as well.

  6. Captivevet says:

    Well, another Xmas has come and gone. New Years Eve comming up. Not much fun for me right now, but I will endeavor to perservere.Happy New Year!

  7. DBabbit says:

    {{{Tyler}}} Happy New Year.

  8. Huong Lan says:

    Hi Pam, do you know how to make the Ojos? If yes, please show me how to do it. 🙂

  9. gdare says:

    Nice post. I haven`t heard for this before. Were they a sort of protectors of young kid?

  10. Des An says:

    dear Pam.i like the Ojos.very colorful and interesting!:yes:

  11. PainterWoman says:

    Tyler, I truly hope the New Year is better for you.Lan, This site has good instructions. Some of his Ojos are very fancy and complicated: http://www.ojos-de-dios.com/ojodirections.phpThe ones my mom made for the Christmas tree are only about four inches. I have never made them but I would use popsicle sticks instead of dowel rods because I like to recycle when I can.Darko, Thanks. Yes, I think they were sort of protectors. The bit of research I did said the Ojos were worked on till the child was five years old. Maybe, many children died before the age of five and this was their way of keeping them safe from harm and disease. Des, yes, very colorful. Thank you.

  12. BabyJay99 says:

    Nice, beautiful and colourful. I like the last one in thefirst picture. :up:

  13. gdare says:

    Yes, it makes sense. When my grandmother was a child, she had 10 brothers and sisters – but only she and another 2 sisters survived. One died few years ago in age 86 (I think) another has 90 now and my grandma is 82. Knowing what she has gone through in her life, I know there was something that protected her all along the way :happy:

  14. edwardpiercy says:

    Fascinating.*********Your color problem could be a simple lightness/darkness setting on your scanner, could be the amount of saturation given by your scanner, or could be caused by a difference in color space between your scanner and everything else you have going on. You could adjust for any of these, but it's difficult to say how without looking at your scanner set-ups etc. I took the bottom photo into Photoshop and was able to get flourescent orange by adjusting the color balance. I was also able to get the same orange by adjusting levels and darkening the photo a bit.Dealing with color matching between monitor, printer, scanner, and camera is one of the most difficult problems in photography. Perhaps Allan or Richard, who print on a regular basis, would know much more than I do about it and could give you some advice. *********Moths just ate my good Nino Ceruti suit. I'm not too happy with moths right now.

  15. PainterWoman says:

    You may be right Ed. I've got a rather cheap Lexmark printer/scanner. When I bought my computer a year and a half ago, I'd just bought the printer. I should have just upgraded and bought another new one to go with the Dell computer. Except for text documents, I don't print out much stuff so I'm really not going to worry about. What I should have done is take a photo rather than scan. Too much light was coming in under the lid.Now if, and when, I get a digital camera, I might also upgrade the scanner.

  16. DBabbit says:

    Pam, when I scan something that the lid doesn't close on, I tape paper around the edges to block out the light, or put a towel over the printer. It works. 😀

  17. gdare says:

    🙄 Smart! 😆

  18. PainterWoman says:

    😆 Now why didn't I think of that Denise. :doh:

  19. Weatherlawyer says:

    What difference does that make?

  20. DBabbit says:

    If outside light gets into the printer, the image shows up with a grayed out background, or the images don't show correctly, like Pam's did in this post. Pam, I've also taken the lid completely off my scanner before and just used a white sheet over it. I haven't tried it yet, but saw an article where someone used a box the same size as the glass on the printer, removed the top and bottom of the box and painted the inside flat white. I was thinking that if you put a white sheet over it, you would basically have a light box like professional photographers use, and the image should have truer colors.

  21. Weatherlawyer says:

    I came across a website once that made use of the abilities of a scanner in stop motion photography. It gives interesting results. Something like stellar striping on amateur long exposures crossed with strobe stuff.I lost the link in an outage some time ago. TalkTalk did the dirty on its AOL customers when they bought out the British section of that company and screwed my favourites. Served me right for having any in AOL though.I have no trouble not bothering with the lid of a scanner for ordinary B&W text. Of course that was in the days I could get my scanner to work. Not sure if it is clapped or the drivers won't update.I always buy cheap though, so it's probably both.

  22. PainterWoman says:

    I have an old black sheet that I might cut smaller to do this very thing.

  23. PainterWoman says:

    You're right about that Tyler. Good to see ya out and about.

  24. Captivevet says:

    Sometimes "low tech" works the best.:cool:

  25. Captivevet says:

    Well, life has to go on, right? Since I have to go to Columbus anyway, I am going to go early and visit with friends.:coffee:

  26. Captivevet says:

    Uh oh, you don't want them to get stuck.:coffee:

  27. DBabbit says:

    Bed time for me. I'll be back later. My eyes are getting crossed. 😆

  28. PainterWoman says:

    Thanks for the links Weather. I'll have to look at them later as I've got to get ready for work. Yup, Tyler, life must go on. It's good that you'll be seeing some friends.Denise, you're almost as bad as me.

  29. Weatherlawyer says:

    Wurk? What is that?

  30. Captivevet says:

    Work is what I do to keep from going insane at home. I would rather go insane somewhere else.:lol:

  31. PainterWoman says:

    Work is what I do so I won't be on public assistance when I'm 70.

  32. PainterWoman says:

    Finally looked at those links Weather. People are so clever sometimes making gadgets. The pics he captured were rather spooky.

  33. Captivevet says:

    Wait a minute Pam, S.S. is not public assisance. I jammed gears for almost 40 years. They took that money out of my check every week. Now it is my turn, and it is your turn also. Take the money.:angel:

  34. PainterWoman says:

    No, I'm not talking about S.S. I'll take whatever they give me I just know it's not going to be very much. Remember, I was a housewife for 22 years and made no money whatsoever. Something someone would remind me of regularly…nevermind, I won't go any further into that. S.S. sends out those yearly thing telling me what I'll get and it isn't very much. I will not be able to live on it unless I keep working, at least part time, now until I don't know when. At least when I'm 65 I can stop paying the $800 every three months for medical insurance.

  35. Captivevet says:

    Well, Happy New Year anyway.:cool:

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