29 Breathtaking Día De Los Muertos Photos

The “Day of the Dead” has exploded in popularity in recent years. Here’s a look at the catrinas, sugar skulls, and ofrendas created to remember and honor loved ones who have passed on.

1. Día De Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) is a holiday celebrated in Mexico and by Mexican-Americans across the U.S.

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3. In places like Los Angeles, the holiday has taken on a pan-Latino quality, celebrated by some Salvadorans, Guatemalans, and other Central Americans.

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4. People celebrate the dead by visiting their grave sites and/or building altars to them.

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5. Graves and altars are decorated with things that were loved by the deceased, like food, liquor, flowers, and trinkets.

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6. Offerings, or ofrendas — usually in the form of altars — can feature marigolds along with favorite items.

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7. Here are a bunch of them.

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8. People also paint themselves as a calavera (skull) or calaca (skeleton).

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10. The way the holiday is celebrated now is a mixture of pre-Hispanic traditions along with some merging of Catholic theology.

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12. According to Mexican folklore, the gates of heaven open at midnight on Nov. 1 and the spirits of all deceased children (angelitos) are allowed to reunite with their families for 24 hours.

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13. The next day, the spirits of the adults come down to enjoy what has been prepared for them.

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14. The timeline is not strictly adhered to, however, and many begin celebrating on Oct. 31.

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16. People dress up as a catrina and catrin.

Rachel Matos / Via theartmuse.net
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18. The catrina is a famous creation of José Guadalupe Posada, a Mexican illustrator.

United States public domain
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19. After his death, the catrina became closely associated with Día De Los Muertos.

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22. Sugar skulls are made and used for decorating altars. Often, the name of the deceased is painted on the forehead.

Jazmín Morales

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24. Some people combine Halloween and Día de los Muertos.

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28. For practitioners, Día de los Muertos is a very happy and festive holiday that celebrates the lives of people they love who have gone on.

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29. A way of staying connected to their families, both living and dead.

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Thanks to Jazmín Morales for insight and diadelosmuertosmask.tumblr.com for many of the great photos.

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Adrian Carrasquillo is a political reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
Contact Adrian Carrasquillo at adrian.c@buzzfeed.com.

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