Corpus Christi – Dia de los Muertos Festival…

For anyone keeping track back home…I am now in Corpus Christi, TX, and it is Sunday morning, Oct-29.  I’m heading to South Padre Island, the southernmost Gulf barrier island in Texas, just as soon as I finish this post.  I have zero plans for South Padre, other than just to see it…maybe walk a beach…sip a margarita…and relax for one night.  Monday, I’m heading to Houston for three nights, before slowly…reluctantly…working my way back to CT.

Yesterday, Saturday, I spent the day in Corpus, mainly because my trip-route coincided with a Dia de los Muertos festival here.  I had done some reading about these festivals, and thought that one might make a nice photo-op.  These are the lengths I’m more than happy to go to, in the mere hope of maybe…just maybe…capturing a few nice images.  Yes…of course I’m crazy.  You ought to know that by now.

As I’ve mentioned, I’m learning how to use this new portrait lens I got for this trip.  It’s very challenging to use…especially for “street photography”…which is what this festival is all about.  I got to the festival early and spent less than two hours strolling and photographing, before I felt I had really captured about all that I had hoped for, and was ready for a break.

As I’ve been stressing…and this is just what I am comfortable doing…with the exception of the Native American dancers, I approached every subject-person, and anyone else involved (including face-paint artists and parents (in the case of child-subjects), before I started taking photos.  Sometimes, the opportunities were so in-the-moment, that I hand-signed and gestured to a subject who was in the middle of a face-paint session, asking if it was okay to photograph them.  The answer was always yes.  I also gave out this travel-blog sort of business card to everyone, as well, as further reassurance that I was on-the-level.

There was also a display of about a half-dozen “tricked-out” Low-Rider cars on display, so I tried to capture them, as well, particularly for my friend, Marc, back home, as he is a car enthusiast.  It was pretty cool to see them up-close.

So, here goes…  Welcome to…

I don’t think I got anyone’s name during the entire stroll, but I do want to thank all of the photo-subjects for their generosity and trust in allowing me to photograph them.  I hope they are happy with the results.  Everyone was very kind and really fun to work with.

Note: If this is your first visit to this travel-blog, just click on any thumbnail photo, and a large-size photo-gallery will open up, that you can scroll through. 

These first two women…the face-painter and her subject…were super-nice.  I always feel like it is an honor and a gift to be allowed into a “moment”, and I try to capture that moment in images.  It’s just the way that I approach attempting to get the shot.

Then, I saw the Low-Rider cars, immediately thought of my friend, Marc, and just had to try to do them justice for him.  I don’t know that I did, but here you go…

This next woman and her face-paint artist were one of those where I think I had to gesture and hand-sign my request to photograph them, because they were also involved in their own moment.  They were very kind to allow me in…

Then, I bumped into the Native American dance performers…incredibly difficult to capture due to lens, bright sunlight contrasting with dark shade in the same image and pinpoint depth-of-field/focus on moving targets in foreground or background…

And the traditional Mexican dance performers, who I was able to capture a little, posing and standing still, as well as during their performance.  The environment was not nearly ideal.  Physical obstacles restricted me from getting as close as I really wanted to, or as clutter-free as would have been nice.  I just tried to work within the limitations I had…

This third girl was very cute.  It seemed like she really wanted me to photograph her, but at the same time, she also wanted me to capture her “game face”…

This next woman was another who just immediately caught my eye.  And she immediately focused on me, looking directly into my lens, after giving me the go-ahead to shoot, in response to my awkward hand-signs and gestures.  She was a very good sport and a very cool lady…

This next young woman literally stopped me in my tracks.  And she could see it, too.  I’m pretty sure my jaw just dropped on the pavement, right then and there.  She was very nice, and was with a couple of girlfriends, who stepped out of the frame without my even saying anything, when I asked permission to shoot.  Each of these “mini-shoots” happens very fast…and then… it’s over.  So, I feel like it’s practically a miracle to capture these moments that will never happen again…

This next young woman was just a “cool chick”, in my book.  She noticed my camera-model right away and said she used to have the same one, but regretfully had to sell it for college expenses.  I didn’t have the presence of mind to tell her in the moment, but just wanted to tell her, now, that she did the right thing.  Finish college, first.  Then, you can get a good job, so that you can buy yourself another nice camera…

I seemed to have a very easy time, quickly connecting and chatting with all of these subjects.  This young woman was no exception.  I don’t have “it” photographically-speaking.  I am not photogenic.  But, this young woman has it in spades…

I found myself continuing to return to the booth of the first face-painting artist I had bumped into.  All of the artists were very friendly, but she and I chatted the most.  So, this red-headed girl caught my eye, as she was sitting patiently for her face-painting.  A mother and another girl…the red-headed girl’s friend…were standing off to the side.  At first glance, the second girl did not look as if she was wearing any face-paint, because she was standing in profile to me, watching her friend get her face painted.

After I finished photographing the red-haired girl, I noticed that the second girl looked slightly sad, so I wondered had I done something.  Then, the second girl turned her head toward me, and instantly, I figured it out.  She had a very cool half-mask, face-painting, that I couldn’t see, because her head was turned, and was feeling just a little left out that I hadn’t asked if I could photograph her.

So, I instantly asked the second girl, and the mother, if I could photograph her.  The second girl instantly perked up and smiled.  That was a close one.  It just didn’t occur to me that someone might feel left out, if they didn’t get photographed…

So, this was my afternoon at the Dia del los Muertos Festival.  As you can see…I may not be posting every day…but, I’m having a great time!

Catch up with y’all again…further on down the road…

4 thoughts on “Corpus Christi – Dia de los Muertos Festival…”

  1. I love the pictures. It looks like you were having a ball. That is a nice lens you have for your camera. It really captures the subjects.

    Like

    1. Hey, Becky! Tks! Since I had gotten to the festival right when it opened, there were not loads of face-painting subjects to choose from. But, I was able to find and chat with some really good ones. I felt very fortunate.

      Yes, thanks, this lens basically made this trip what it is. I’m so glad I bought it…and just in time.

      Like

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