Who am I? I’m Judi Morales… an indie-designer-bohemian-artist-maker-burner and mom to my teenaged son Dexter, The Biscuit. I’m a California girl… based in Kings Beach (North Lake Tahoe) with roots in Vallejo in the northern East Bay (SF Bay Area). Working as artist was always my dream… bring it on.
Steampunk Clothing Indie-Design: I am big into Upcycling, in fact, I don’t use any new fabrics. I rescue used clothing, table linens and found objects to Upcycle them into Steampunk clothing and accessories. I do all the work myself in my home studio. I vend my line along with affordable Steampunk accessories here on this site, and a select festivals during the summer.
Art Instructor for Adults
Encaustic Painting is a hot beeswax medium. I teach unconventional and experimental techniques, including how to make your own Encaustic medium and paints with dry pigments and natural spices. I use affordable equipment including hand torches and upcycled substrates and materials.
Guerilla Upcycled Sewing is a radical way of sewing without patterns with upcycled fabrics. I currently teach at the Truckee Roundhouse Maker Space. I believe sewing should be fun instead intimidating or complicated, so I specialize in beginners. I teach how sewing through fun projects.
Freelance Writing: My blog was originally called Raising the Biscuit… dealing the balance of being a good mom and remaining true to myself. I now realize, it’s more about reclaiming my own childhood and enjoying it along with my son. It’s about having a good quality of life… everyday.
As a journalist, I’ve written for Benicia.Patch.com and eHow.com. I’m currently working on a book of non-fiction satirical essays… called Theories About Back Fat. I am a Irony Enthusiast.
Painting & Photograpy: I paint abstracts in encaustic, a hot bees wax medium. I dabble in photography with cell phone. My eye seems to notice dramatic contrasts of light and color.
I love gardening so I make table-top succulent gardens out of Upcylced dishware. I have practiced and taught Mehndi Body Art (henna painting) since 1997. I enjoy sharing it with friends.
Art Instructor for Kids
As the Youth Education Coordinator for Arts Benicia, I doubled as a youth art instructor. I taught at the EcoArt Summer Camp, ABAS (Arts Benicia Afterschool Program) and Exploratory Wheel hosted by the Benicia School District, where I taught Tinker Time, a Maker class for 3rd-grade students.
I currently teach at the Truckee Roundhouse with the Boys and Girls Club and the Aim High summer program for teens.
My classes are based on Eco Art principals of using upcycled materials, student-imagined designs and the use of a variety of tools. With the loss of classes like woodshop and art in schools, I see the need for kids to learn to use tools and explore their creativity. My experience as a Respite Care provider for children with developmental disabilities, has help me understand how to work with children, especially those needing extra encouragement.
Truckee Roundhouse Makerspace, Truckee, CA:
I am the Textile Shop Lead with this amazing non-profit maker space, located at the Truckee Tahoe Airport. It is a community-operated shop and workspace where people with common interests, often in computers, machining, technology, science, digital art or electronic art; can meet, socialize and collaborate.
I teach Encaustic Painting (hot beeswax medium) and sewing classes for adults and youths.
It’s a fundraiser for Friends of Black Rock High Rock, a non-profit based in Gerlach, that does conservation and education in the 1.2 million acres of public lands in the Black Rock Desert area.
Burning Man, Black Rock City, NV: I have participated in and Burning Man from 1999 to 2015, 11 of those burns were done with my son, Dexter, who was 16 months old at his first burn.
I founded a theme camp, Hot Monkey Sox, a sock monkey workshop in Kidsville, as well as Black Rock Scouts, an educational program for kids. I was a writer for the Burning Blog, as an advocate and educator for young burner families with children.
I’ve volunteered with Gate/Perimeter, Earth Guardians, Lamplighters, Greeters and Man Watch. My project for 2014 was Playa on Tap, a campaign to encourage burners to bring tap water to the playa, instead of bottled water.
Instead of participating in Burning Man directly, I now volunteer with Friends of Black Rock High Rock, running a playa gear pop-up store as a fundraiser. I currently moderate a Facebook page called MOOP-Free Playa Wear, where burners can find responsible playa wear goods and ideas.