organizing Tag

7th Annual Social Justice Children’s Bk Holiday Fair

Man, I was so busy sharing about this event and planning and prepping that I forgot to psot about it on my own damn blog. Anyways, for those who came it was beautiful and hectic. For the first time we partnered with Emerson Elementary in Oakland.

Here is the livestream of interviews and performances from that day:

Interviews w/ Emerson PTA, Local authors, activists, and musicians

Here is the Facebook invite from this year

And here is the books new Instagram account. Please follow us!

Link to our IG

Ok, if you were not there but want to support the authors/organizations/musicians who tabled please go to our website.

Dig this? Check out some photos for the fair last year.

Video: Interviews @ the “Social Justice Children’s Book Holiday Fair”


This is some video footage featuring interviews from book creators, organizations, the organizers of the event, and the owner of Teance. Can we give it up for Peter Limata and Lydia Yamaguchi though? They just bring SO MUCH vibrancy, love, and care to what they capture and who they spoke to at the event!  Please watch and enjoy. If you did not get a chance to attend the fair in person you can still get books from the creators who were there and many others using our website 
Here is more interviews Peter did leading up to the fair that morning. In this he speaks to Jill Guerra (We are Yoga/Somos Yoga), Christina Newhard of Sari Sari Books (KaliPay, Melo the Umang Boy), Breanna McDaniels (Hands Up), and John Casselberry (Konscious Kids).
Dig this? Check out the virtual 2020 Social Justice Children’s Book Fair

Celebrate A People’s History!

I contributed an illustrated poster to this 2nd edition of Celebrate People’s History by Josh Macphee and Feminist Press. It contains art celebrating, people, places, events, and movements for radical change in the US and internationally. Its beautifully curated and designed and is quite affirming if you feel like no progress is being made. It is also a powerful educational tool because many of the stories in it (illustrated as posters) are left out of history books.
My piece is about the “Contract Buyers League”, a group of Black home owners and faith based organizers who fought against the racist housing discrimination and theft of Black wealth in Chicago after the great migration. The book features are by Mincho Vega, Melanie Cervantes, Jesus Barraza, Zeke Peña, Miriam Klein Stahl, Cristy Road, Design Action Collective, and more.
Here’s my piece from the book:
Read more about the Contract Buyers League here.
Here’s the book synopsis:
Forewords by Charlene Carruthers and Rebecca Solnit
Spanning nearly three thousand years of history—from the ancient Secession of the Plebs to the 2017 protests of the Confederate Soldiers Monument in Durham, from Sojourner Truth to Naoto Matsumura—these posters pay tribute to the long-standing human legacy of revolution, creative activism, and grassroots organizing. In this book, contemporary artists imagine and interpret often-overlooked events and figures in movements for racial justice, women’s rights, queer liberation, labor organizing, and environmental conservation.
Dig this? Check out a mural I did that was in the book “Painting The Streets”

SF Anti Housing Displacement

This is a piece I created for the SF Anti Housing Displacement Coalition. They are a group of tenants, organizers, and volunteers who work together to keep San Francisco residents in their homes. Over the past 30 years San Francisco has seen so many changes from the tech companies, to the international migration of people coming to the city. What has been there the whole time is a spirit of activism and community organizing against unjust laws, companies, policies, institutions, and the city itself. This is an example of that attitude and action. 
I got a chance to sit with residents of the SF buildings who were being harassed, pushed out, disrespected, and harmed mentally and physically by their landlord. This landlord like so many in the city is trying to get old tenants with rent protection out and new tenants in so they can charge those people double, sometimes triple what their current tenants are paying. If they’re not doing this, they are trying to sell their buildings to the highest bidder. And if tenants wont leave on their own the landlords harass them by intentionally leaving things unfixed, doing construction that interfere’s with the health and safety of the tenants, and so many other tactics. But, this coalition is fighting back and winning.
This illustration is one of many created by artists to reach out to SF residents who don’t know their rights and need help fighting back.

Inspiration board 35

Here is my latest inspiration board (a collage of inspiring people, places, books, films, artists, musicians, and movements). I’ve been posting these since 2009 and I try to post 2-3 of these per year as I revisit things from the past and find new inspiration. Feed your creativity.
From left to right, top to bottom: 
1. Berna Anat-financial analysis/hype woman 2. Barbara Dziadosz-Illustrator 3. Diary of a Future President-Disney TV show 4. Risograph art (Sara Hagstrom) 5. Ana Tijoux– Cacerolazo 6. Vel The Wonder– Ice Cream 7. Metal & Enamel Pins! 8. Kaytranada -Bubba LP 9. Cey Adams-OG Graf writer/designer 10. Film Courage-Storytelling 11. Seba Kaapstad– Afro German band 12. 45 record covers 13. Moms 4 Housing – Oakland 14. Safia Elhillo – Sudanese American Poet 15. The Joy of Swimming by Lisa Congdon- Art book 16. Paul Davey/Mattahan-Illustrator
Thats it, click on some of the links embedded above and check these things out. And as always please check out the previous board:
What’s this? This inspiration board is one of the ways I stay inspired and sane through all of life’s trials, and tribulations, work, etc. I’ve been making inspiration boards full of films, books, music, events, people, artists, movements, and more for over a decade. Do you have an inspiration board? Please share in the comments.
Who am I? My name is Rob and I’m an artist working in kid lit, public art, and other disciplines. Go to my website, or follow me on IG or YouTube.

You can purchase my book “Art of Rob” here

Article – Permanently Organized

Yoooo, this right here! The writer Michelle is an old friend and her organization “Movement Generations” has been organizing around land, labor, justice, and ecology for a minute. What does that mean? Its a lot to explain-but they’re down. Please take 6 minutes and read this article about how we stay ready for the apocalypse.
I’ll give you an example of how she practices what “Movement Gen” preaches from a parent perspective. You ever wanted to go out for a date whether you’re boo’d up or single but you have a child or children you don’t want to leave at home? This sister and her family created an organized community strategy to this. 5-10 families all pitch in by watching each other children on a rotating basis. Each Friday the kids go to one families house who watches all the kids (think activities, food, movies) and the other families go out for 2 maybe 3 hours to dance, see a movie, see a concert, or relax. Sound cool? Imagine if we were all so connected we didn’t have to grocery shop or put elders in an old folks home, we’d all help each other by sharing the care.

Power California – Cultural strategy

Hey folks, just got news that this new repost is out. And its designed by my wife (who did the cover illustration). It features some great resources for groups, organizers, and political activists on using artwork and cultural strategy in tandem with political or organizing work. You can download the report here. And here is a link to more information about Power California who I illustrated this poster for recently.
Here is a sample page with my artwork paired side by side with Oree Originol.

Who is She 33? – Dolores Huerta

Short version: 
So this will be my only new piece for Women’s History Month 2019. It’s a larger illustration of Dolores Huerta featuring many symbols that represent parts of her life both big and small. Dolores is one of the most revolutionary women living. As the co-founder of the United Farm Workers Union her selfless activism and organizing helped to not only change the lives of the farm workers across California, but it continues to inspire young women and people all over the world.
It is a crime that more attention, respect, and admiration is not given to her. I just finished working on a project about her and had the chance to learn a lot more about her. But, if you’re not familiar with Dolores, I highly recommend watching the most recent documentary by Peter Bratt. It will give you a good glimpse into her life. Then go check out her foundation because she is still organizing! I give Dolores and her family so much respect and thanks. Happy women’s day!
Longer Version: 
So, here is a slightly longer version but I am not going to go over her entire life just some of the words, drawings, and symbols I included. I would highly suggest watching the documentary if you are not a reader. If you’re a reader go check out her foundation.
Stockton– Ok so Dolores was born in Dawson New Mexico, but she grew up in Stockton California. Although her dad was a farm worker and organizer, she was raised by her mom and siblings. There she watched her mom hold down jobs and eventually run a hotel which was not a typical thing for most women to do in the 30s. It was through her mom that she got her first feminist role model; saying that she never had to cater to her brothers. Her mother made them all work equally; which is often not the case in some Latinx families. Dolores attended school in Stockton in what was a very mixed setting, but she also experienced racism there in the treatment of students of color and her education.
Dancing/Jazz-Dolores loved to dance and she loves music. One of her favorite genres is Jazz. She helped organize a dance, danced herself, and made time to go see musicians play live.
Fred Ross-After working as a teacher and witnessing the conditions the children of farm workers lived in she dedicated her life to organizing. It is then that she met Fred Ross who ran the Community Service Organization (CSO). He taught Dolores about organizing and she became a bad ass at it. She was so persuasive and hard working that they soon promoted her to take policy changes to the states capitol.
Cesar Chavez-Another bad ass who worked with and was trained Fred Ross is Cesar. Cesar grew up as a child of farm workers and understood their experiences first hand. He was also a star at organizing and soon Fred was partnering Cesar and Dolores up. Cesar would also go on to be one of the most revolutionary activists of his time.
NFWA-National Farm Workers Association– Together Dolores and Cesar left the CSO and co-founded a small organization aimed at specifically organizing Latinx farm workers in Central California. They called it an association rather than a union because unions were outlawed and union organizers were being hunted.
Huelga sign– After getting a jump from the Filipino workers AWOC (Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee) they joined forces with Dolores and Cesar to form what would become world famous as the United Farm Workers or UFW. The symbol for their flag inspired by Aztec iconography and later becoming a symbol for organizing, social justice, and Chican@ pride. The word Huelga means “strike” in both Spanish and Tagalog the languages spoken by the multicultural UFW.
Si! Se Puede!– Dolores was a leader who often went into towns, cities, and communities to speak with folks, hear their needs, and to organize them.  She did this with wit, strength, and humility. But, if anyone ever told her she couldn’t do something which both white folks and macho men of color often did, she’d say yes we can. Si Se Puede! Which is a slogan she came up with and was later used by Barack.
The Feminist fist– I included this because although Dolores was brought up Catholic in a traditional Latinx family she was brought up with some very feminist ideas. And when she met feminists on a trip to NYC to promote the grape strike of the mid 60s she gained some new ideas. At first she didn’t rock with all of what they said, but then slowly she started to change her mind, incorporating them into her life. This is important, because of in el movimiento there can be sexism. Women from the Black Panther Party have spoken about this as well.
Family-So Dolores amazingly had 11 children! She now has 17 grand kids as well. So, as a movement parent she lifted up farm workers and fought for revolutionary causes. She worked tirelessly to do this for decades. But, her family life was sacrificed in many cases. She got married three times and often was away organizing. Her grown children have not held back in saying they were sometimes angry with her, left behind, or frustrated. They understand why she did what she did, but it was not easy. Somehow with little to no money (organizers don’t get paid often) she raised and got help raising her kids.
Billy club- I put that in there because she was beaten by the San Francisco Police Department. They broke her ribs and she had to be hospitalized. She has been arrested over 20 times in her life.
Why? Ok, so why did Dolores do all this work? Why sacrifice? A couple of reasons. The Mexican and Latinx workers who grew, picked, and serviced the farm lands that feed the United States were being exploited. They were being ripped off financially. Whenever possible the white farm owners undercut their pay. leaving them with not enough money to pay for proper housing (Dolores’ mom often let workers stay for free because of this) , food, clothing, and/or schooling for their kids. Their kids could not attend school, they had to work in the fields to help support the family. The working conditions were horrible. Imagine bending over all day to pick fruits and vegetables without proper breaks, no drinking water, no bathrooms, or shade. Workers were . threatened if they asked for these things and fired if they attempted to form a union. They had no sick time, no benefits, no regular raises, and no support if they got ill. Lastly,  the farm owners were poisoning their workers as they worked them to death (life expectancy was in the 50’s). The farm owners had their fields sprayed with harsh chemicals such as DDT known to cause cancer. Because of all this Dolores was passionate about fighting for these workers.
Victory-And you know what? They organized among the Filipino and Latinx workers striking for years, bringing down a boycott that reached across the US . This eventually took so much money out . of the growers pockets that they forced them to the negotiating table, winning better working conditions, rights, and pay for the families. Dolores is a bad ass!
There’s a lot I’m leaving out, but please check out more of the drawing and go find out more about this woman’s life!   If you wanna see more women I’ve drawn for Women’s History Month check these past examples: