Rattlesnake Feather Boa
A custom costume piece based upon classic Mexican Art:
This month presented a new challenging costume piece based off of a famous painter's work. Recreating in a stylized fashion, was a rattlesnake skeleton boa for a central focal-point figure in a well-known work of art. The idea was to take some figments from the Día de Los Muertos character and implement them into a new boa made from rooster feathers, as well as finding a way to add the client's own rattlesnake skin from her childhood ranch. What we came up with, turned out to be unique.
Mexican artist, Diego Rivera's social realism was revolutionary during his time. This is his Day of the Dead Lady from his famous fresco mural "Dream of a Sunday Afternoon in Alameda Park" with her rattlesnake boa.
The boa first had to be cut and realigned so that all the feathers would go the same direction as in the painting, although from there the reference photo starts to depart from the project itself. The rattlesnake skin was cut into over 70 individual feathers and connected one by one within the boa itself and onto the edges of the skull and rattle; a process which took a very long time and much patience as the feathers are quite delicate and can be difficult to work around with each waxed thread that connects them. The skull was cut, formed and tooled with some floral embellishments and several sets of vertebrae to flow organically into the feathering. The rattle was articulated and connected in the same way with rattlesnake feathers overlying both sections of the front and back. Added for more snake-like effect was a suede tongue which hangs down nicely with the wearer as the boa is presented.