Dia de los Muertos! Day of the Dead! Colorado has a vast Mexican population, and as such, many of their traditions are celebrated here, such as this one. Many Latin American countries have their own versions of this holiday, based on the Catholic days of All Saints Day and All Souls Day, but all revolve around the celebration and remembrance of deceased family and loved ones. Traditionally, people will adorn altars at cemeteries (or build shrines in their homes) with gifts of flowers, food, toys, tequila, and other crafts for the dead to enjoy. Often there are processions with many of the people dressed in the style of the famous calaveras (sugar skulls) and catrinas of José Guadalupe Posada, a Mexican illustrator.
The art style that emerged from his drawings have influenced many other artists over the decades, such as Denver’s own Enrique Lazaro. Coming from a family of artists and born and raised in Mexico, he embraces his heritage and tradition by evoking a vivid color pallete and mesmerizing punch to the senses in his artwork. Tattoos, paintings, skateboard decks, and tshirts – Enrique continuously pushes the medium in expressing his art. Check him at Lazaroart.com (The last photo in this post is him).
This year, El Camino restaurant hosted a Dia de los Muertos celebration, complete with artwork by Enrique Lazaro and sugar skull face paintings by the lovely Indie Six ladies. You might remember them from such fun calendar release shoots like this ONE. TPL offered up a photo booth for their end result.
Technical note on lighting:
Key: 1 x Profoto Pro-7B mounted high slightly left of subject on a c-stand with 22″ beauty dish and 20 degree grid.
Fill: 1 x 580 EXII mounted high right of subject in a chimera speedring and a Photoflex 12×16 softbox.
Bounce: Flexfill 38″ silver reflector below the subject aimed at face (I actually had the subjects hold the reflector).
The location had us in a very tight corner in terms of space, so I literally had subjects up against a wall, with little room for back-lighting them, but it all turned out quite well!
Many, many thanks to Brian Rossi for having us!