Día de los Muertos Animal Skulls

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All Souls Day Animal Skull Masks

decorated carnival maskJoin in the festivities with Mexican style animal skulls. These crazy cranium color book compositions can be a fun craft project for children to learn about the customs of Mexico and other South American cultures.

November 2nd, the Day of the Dead (Spanish: Día de los Muertos) or All Souls´ Day is a happy and colorful celebration and Mexico's most important religious holiday. On this day it is believed that dead relatives return from their resting places to visit their loved ones. Families visit cemeteries and churches bringing with them with flowers, candles, and prayer to reinforce the solidarity between living and dead persons.

Skull painting utilizes these types of design characters - and more

  • Spider webs
  • hearts
  • roses
  • scrollwork
  • gods eye
  • Flowers
  • stitches
  • tear drops
  • butterflies
  • crosses
  • swords
  • daggers
  • morning glory flowers
  • mustaches
  • bright primary colors
  • Flowering vines
  • repeating patterns

Mexican and Latino Masks

Death head masks are usually decorated with bright colors and fantastic designs. The practice of using skulls and skeletons in art predates the Spanish conquest. Origins of the holiday date back to Aztec festivals dedicated to the goddess Mictecacihuatl, a deity who watches over the bones of the dead. The goddess of the earth and death, oatlicue, is portrayed wearing a necklace of human hearts, hands and a skull pendant.

While this all sounds rather gruesome, the indigenous peoples worshiped the cycle of life and death. The skull, a symbol of death served the dual purpose of also being a promise of resurrection. Aztec artisans carved skull caricatures into massive stones of lava, and constructed beautiful masks of obsidian and jade. Skull decorations were molded into clay pots, added to hieroglyphs, scrolls and used to create decorations for clothing.

The macabre riddle of the skull mask. University of Montana research team announced the solution to the mystery behind eight Aztec masks made from human skulls. The find has been puzzling scientists for over 30 years.

Animal Skull Masks

Calaveras are colorfully decorated sugar skulls that are made both to adorn altars and to be eaten on the Day of the Dead.

Calaca skulls and skeletons wear festive clothing with flowery hats decorated with marigold flowers and foliage and are usually shown, dancing, and playing musical instruments.

These color book images are suitable for Halloween, All Souls Day or Aztec and Latino or Mexican crafts for fun child learning activity.