Every now and then I need to sneak out and do some photography just for me. Don’t get me wrong – I truly love being a portrait photographer. Photographing another human being is the most rewarding, intimate, artistic interaction I know of (and my clients are the best!) But sometimes, I just need to get out there and photograph whatever. Not for my clients, not for my family, not for a photography project, or for any other reason than to simply to get out there and play.
This past weekend gave me the perfect opportunity to do just that. The annual Crush festival, is a neighborhood-beautification event in the RiNo district of Denver that brings together street and graffiti artists for a mural-painting extravaganza. According to the event organizers, “the Crush is on a mission to celebrate art, urban beautification, creativity, and culture by enriching the community through an arts festival like no other. Centered around empowering artists’ creativity, the Crush is committed to reflecting and diversifying the urban landscape and the unique voice of the community.”
I’m a sucker for great street art, and a festival to celebrate this often under appreciated art form was a great excuse for me to get out and capture its beauty with my camera. This year’s artists did not disappoint, and they have once again covered this gritty corner of Denver with amazing murals full of color, energy and subtle (or not so subtle) social commentaries. I thoroughly enjoyed walking down the alleys, peeking into entryways, and wandering around the side streets discovering what was new on both the large and small scale.
Ironically, I think my favorite take away from the event was not the vibrant, larger-than-life murals, but I tiny sign tucked into the corner of one artist’s alleyway door. It simply read:
We have to create. It is the only thing louder than destruction.
Yes, my friend, we are each our own Picasso.