Although the reproduction on the wall depicts the French nobility, the figures really lurking in the photograph's background are right up front in a painting not seen here: Diego Velazquez's 1656 masterpiece "The Maids of Honor" ("Las Meninas"). His doll-like princess and the dwarf who is her playmate coalesce in the subject of Trujillo's picture. Yet when you ask Trujillo where he got the idea for his period portraits, he mentions the ones he sat for as a boy in Mexico.
This photograph is from a series called "Los Ninos" that Trujillo shot at his parents' home in Zacatecas, Mexico, and at his sister's in L.A. The subjects are usually his nieces and nephews, who submit to wearing costumes that Trujillo designs and has run up by a seamstress. He also furnishes the sets with items from friends or flea markets.