I come from a family of makers in Jalisco Mexico where I grew up for the first decade of my life. I began to paint when my aunt, a painter and architecture student herself, had to babysit me, her answer? oil paints. I’ve been hooked ever since. Later in my life as a PhD student, my art pieces rose out of my community organizing. The first portrait was done in haste for an event flyer that an organization needed in 2014 and I lent my creative skills to help them promote their event. Soon after that, I realized that those of us who identified as queer and of color lacked images of our own queer and or activist of color elders. I identify as a pansexual Chicana artivist, and with that comes a responsibility to make work that honors all of these parts. We often found the words of Gloria Anzaldúa or learned of Silvia Rivera later in our lives. I decided to paint the fierce womxn I didn’t grow up hearing about, in the hopes that they would help my queer siblings grow into loving themselves whole. Most of my portraits begin with research; learning about the activist I’m painting influences which colors I choose. Then, I sketch and paint a watercolor portrait, scan it and add a quote that I feel best represents their vision of social justice. I wholeheartedly believe in my work as a healing salve and self-care practice, as well as a way to preserve queer activist politics alive.