I was really excited to learn about Cinco de Mayo, as its something I had never come across and wanted to learn more about it. There are so many situations where artists are nailed for cultural appropriation, and in this instance, I decided to speak to one of my Mexican American friends from California, who also happens to be an Artist, to ask his opinion on these questions, and also ask about the cultural appropriation aspect.
So hi! My name is Nicola, and I am from My Inner Creative.
For the month of May I did a full plan with me - in the Cinco de Mayo styled theme, and for this post you will be able to download my digitised version of my cover page.
What is Cinco de Mayo?
The direct translation of Cinco De Mayo is "May the 5th" and the date is observed to commemorate the Mexican Army's victory over the French Empire at the Battle of Puebla, on May 5, 1862.
In the United States, Cinco de Mayo has taken on a significance beyond that in Mexico. More popularly celebrated in the United States than Mexico, the date has become associated with the celebration of Mexican-American culture. These celebrations began in California, where they have been observed annually since 1863.
This is observed as a lovely day of celebration of the awesome melting pot of cultures America has become.
My Cover Page - Cinco de Mayo
To celebrate this awesome cultural brilliance, I decided to make a bright spread in my journal for May and call it Cinco de MAYo. I went and grabbed as many bright colors as I could find and popped them together on the cover page for a color explosion!
I also wanted to keep it pretty simple to make sure that it was easy for everyone else to try.
My other designs for this month
After speaking to my gorgeous friend, who also happens to be an artist, about what I could use in my notebook to make it feel more festive, he suggested it would look great to include Papel picado ("perforated paper," "pecked paper") is a decorative craft made by cutting elaborate designs into sheets of tissue paper. Papel picado is considered a Mexican folk art. While this isnt usually a representation of Cinco de Mayo, he did agree it would add a fun creative element to the spreads.
What tools did I use?
Here is a list of the tools I used for this cover page and other the other pages in my journal (You can watch my full plan with me down below)
1. My A&O Black out Notebook
2. My Gouache from Reeves
3. My Gelly Rolls in Moonlight
How did I create the spread for Cinco De Mayo?
I started by creating the banner with gouache which set the foundation to adding lettering later. The reason I wanted the banner in gouache was because I wanted the words in black and the black gouache would sit well on the white.
I then went and created a series of flowers, patterns and dots in bright colors to give the celebration feel! This was really easy to do with the Moonlight pens because they are incredibly vibrant.