A Film-Noir Comic has been on my mind for a while. With the chance to participate in the local exhibit ExpoMujer came the opportunity to experiment with that aesthetic, adding it to one of my original narratives.

As is the case with my ongoing bilingual children book series Simona, once again, I needed the assistance of an illustrator, to bring my characters and my vision to life. Gema Ledesma, aka Nanoaoi in Fiverr.com had just the style I was looking for, and the disposition to do it fast. She was highly communicative, responsive and professional. And even though this was a paid service, she was genuinely pleased to work on the project and grateful for the opportunity. Then again, who said collaborations have to be free to be meaningful?

You might be able to do it all. You might be a writer who also draws, and has a handle on graphic design. But if you are like me, and you don’t want to wait until your own skills as an illustrator improve before sharing a story with the world, collaboration is power.

Illustrators all over the world, in platforms like Fiverr, ODesk and others alike, are waiting for meaningful projects; to practice, to test themselves and enjoy the boost of energy that comes from creative work and collaboration.

Collaboration shatters all obstacles to achieving what we want. Collaboration puts things in motion. Collaboration creates connections and sparks inspiration.

That graphic Film-Noir comic will stay in my to-do-list for a while. But “Entrevista con Ella” and the collaborative experience I shared with Nanoaoi, it’s definitely a step forward.

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“Entrevista con Ella”  (Interview with Her) 2017

This is my interpretation of womanhood. It voices the futile aim of “others” to define and confine “us”. Ella believes the word Mujer (woman) is synonymous with humanity. She believes that by excluding themselves from that word, men repress their femininity and weaken the power of their masculinity. None of us should.

“Mujer” carries with it imposed values, roles and beliefs, along unwanted negative connotations. It’s tied up with femininity, pinned against feminism. It’s chained to one human group and gender, when it belongs to all. Mujer is not just mother. Mujer is many things; wants many things. She doesn’t long for a world without Hombre (man) she longs for a world, where we are all intrinsically human, where we are free to be, without one single label, one single story.

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