God truly works in mysterious ways. For the past couple years I have been mixing my interest in street art, graffiti and murals with my portraiture. Over time I discovered that creating portraits in front of wall murals found around San Diego, made for some compelling images. One thing led to another and soon I found myself working with a group of really passionate people to create some new dynamic mural portraits. Culture Shock San Diego in collaboration with local muralist, Mr. Maxx Moses (AKA Pose2) are putting together a dance theatrical called Graffiti Life, The Color of my Sole, which will be playing at the San Diego Repertory Theatre, May 28-31, 2009.
San Diego Southern California Mural Artist, Mr. Maxx Moses (AKA Pose2) in Barrio Logan (Chicano Park) walking in front street art mural by Crol vs Werc & Pose2
Culture Shock dancer, Sherman Shoate in front of Crol vs Werc mural during Graffiti Life photo shoot in Downtown San Diego
Culture Shock B-Boys (David Silvas, Jeremy Mascardo and David Henry) breakdancing in front of Chor Boogie's mural located at 9th and G, Downtown San Diego
Jeremy Mascardo breakdancing in front of Mr. Maxx Moses' (AKA Pose2) street mural on the wall outside the Art Academy of San Diego
Culture Shock San Diego dancer, Angela Molton in front of Mr. Maxx Moses' (AKA Pose2) wall mural on 9th and G street
Getting down and dirty at the Graffiti Life photo shoot, Angela Molton, Chris Keeney and Sherman Shoate -Canon G9 photo by Liz Bernal
I was fortunate enough to get some lighting help from Sherman Shoate, who was kind enough to position a new wireless boom light that I recently invented and put together. A Manfrotto mono pod with a Canon 580EX II hot shoe flash, wireless flash trigger (Pocket Wizard), Canon AA battery pack, custom made velcro straps (for securing Pocket Wizard and battery pack to the monopod), and a 43cm Westcott umbrella with black covered removed. I have since removed the battery pack to reduce the overall weight of the light. After we finished up at this location on 9th and G street (The murals on the Art Academy of San Diego, we all drove to Chicano Park in Barrio Logan where we finished up the shoot for the day.
Graffiti Life dance crew, David Henry, Angela Molton, Jeremy Mascardo, David Silvas and Sherman Shoate in Barrio Logan in front of Crol vs Werc mural
On the Sunday following the street mural photo shoot in downtown San Diego, I set up studio lights and a seamless backdrop in one of the dance studios at the Culture Shock Dance Center. Once everything was set up, I proceeded to photograph 30+ head shots of all the dancers in the Culture Shock Troupe. To keep things loose and relaxed, I had the dancers stand in front of the camera instead of sitting. This allowed for more more fun and spontaneous poses. After all the head shots were done, a few of the dancers stayed behind to create some portraits done in front of some really nice wall murals Culture Shock has decorating their studio. Below are just a few of my favorites from that shoot. Thanks Rachael, Sherman and Angie for doing such a great job making these portraits.
Portrait of Hip Hop dancer, Rachael Macario in front of wall mural painted by graffiti writer, Romali Licudan at the Culture Shock Dance Center
Mural portrait of hip hop dancer Rachael Macario at the San Diego Culture Shock Dance Center
Mural portrait of San Diego California dancer, Rachael Macario at the Culture Shock Dance Center
Hip hop dancer, Rachael Macario in front of wall mural at the Culture Shock Dance Center
Sherman Shoate in front of mural located at the Culture Shock Dance Center, San Diego, California
Mural portrait of Sherman Shoate at the Culture Shock Dance Center San Diego, California
Portrait of Angie Bunch in front of mural painted by graffiti writer, Romali Licudan. Angie is the founder and executive director of Culture Shock Dance Troupe San Diego.
It has been my pleasure to create these photos for this fine group of people and I recommend to anyone who is interested in learning how to dance to check them. You can find more information about them on the Culture Shock website.
All photos copyright 2009 Chris Keeney Photography and may not be used without permission.