I am an adoptee from the Philippines. I grew up in the Bay Area, California. I went to San Francisco State University to study poetry and went on to study poetry at the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics. Then, I went to the MFA Comics program at California College of the Arts. I am a full-time cartoonist and I love to teach. I live with my partner, my son and our many pets.
How did you discover Western?
Fellow poet and professor Rachelle Cruz introduced me to Western.
What are some of the highlights of your career?
- My comics have been featured in literary journals like Shenandoah and The Brooklyn Review, as well as other publications such as NPR and The New Yorker.
- In 2019, I was named as one of YBCA’s most influential global artists for my graphic journalism and community workshops grounded in gender and racial justice.
- In 2020, my comics were featured in Eisner, Ringo and Ignatz-winning anthologies like Drawing Power (Abrams) and Be Gay, Do Comics (IDW).
- My poem-comic on sexual violence was on display at the first-ever international Women in Comics 2021 exhibits in Rome and Naples, Italy.
- Ode to Keisha, a one-shot comic illustrated by Trinidad and written by Jamila Rowser of Black Josei Press, won a Broken Frontier Award in 2022.
- I have had a blast as a guest artist and speaker at the Society of Illustrators, San Diego Comic-Con, SFMoMa, San Jose Museum of Art, Comic Arts Brooklyn, the Brooklyn Public Library, the Jewish Contemporary Museum, the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, the American Library Association Conference, Pilipino Komix Expo, LitQuake, Drawn & Quarterly, SF Zine Fest, The Center for Cartoon Studies in Vermont, and The Cartoon Art Museum in San Francisco.
- My collection of comics erotica Arrive In My Hands was published by Black Josei Press in 2022.
- My YA graphic novel Of Sea And Venom will be published by Farrar, Straus, and Giroux (Books For Young Readers),
and Tryst is forthcoming from Gantala Press in the Philippines.
What most excites you about your field?
I enjoy building community with other artists and the comics community can be pretty welcoming. I am excited to work with other cartoonists, journalists, poets, and short story writers. I am also thrilled to see new work coming from fresh BIPOC and LGBTQ+ artists in the comics field.
What is your favorite thing about the Gunnison Valley?
I work remotely, off-site. I hope to visit someday soon 🙂