Artist designs a ‘love letter to San Antonio’ to raise money for students

All funds raised go towards helping students in need due to COVID-19

SAN ANTONIO – Martha Martínez-Flores was born in Chicago and raised in San Luis Potosí, México, but has called San Antonio home for the last 20 years.

“I’m an honorary San Antonian now,” Martínez-Flores said.

Martínez-Flores is the owner and creative director of MMCreative, a creative consulting studio whose work is featured all across San Antonio. Since the beginning of the pandemic in March, Martínez-Flores has added another colorful design titled, “SA is Amor.”

“I decided to put in a design of all the things that I love about the city and about the culture and the heritage,” Martínez-Flores said. “That’s how it all got started.”

The main image is of papel picado. It was made available in pink and yellow and showcases a variety of icons most San Antonians will easily recognize.

Martha Martínez-Flores, owner and creative director of MM Creative is selling what she calls a “love letter to San Antonio” in order to raise funds for students in need. (Copyright 2020 by KSAT - All rights reserved.)

“We have the acordión for the Conjunto music,” Martínez-Flores said. “(Also), Mission Espada. That, to me, is one of the most beautiful missions.”

The San Fernando Cathedral, River Walk and the Tower of the Americas are other San Antonio landmarks easily spotted in the design. “Then you have a nod to the cowboy culture (with a cowboy hat), the veladora (or candle that’s) in the West Side of San Antonio, Martínez-Flores said.

In between the two sugar skull icons, Martínez-Flores includes a slogan in Spanish that translates in English to your vote is your voice.

“We have the slogan, ‘Su Voto Es Su Voz,’ because of San Antonio being one of the birthplaces of the Chicano movement in the 60s, and the fact that Willie Velásquez started the Southwest Voter Registration (Education Project) here,” Martínez-Flores said.

Icons that to the Latina designer boil down to one thought: love.

“It’s really a love letter to San Antonio, because I know I’m not the only one that loves the city this much and loves these aspects of the city,” Martínez-Flores said.

The design was first published in San Antonio Magazine, but Martínez-Flores wanted to give lovers of San Antonio a chance to have the real thing at home.

“We did an initial run of 100 limited edition prints and the response was overwhelming,” Martínez-Flores said. “Within a week, we sold 100 prints.”

Close to 150 silkscreen prints have been sold exclusively at Felíz Modern, each one priced at $75. Neither the artist nor the business have kept a single dime of the sales.

“Well, if I can use my talent to give back to this community that has given me and my family so much,” Martínez-Flores said. “Why not do it?”

All proceeds benefit two community funds for students and their families negatively impacted by COVID-19.

“The first two organizations were the Alamo Colleges Student Impact Fund and Bonham Academy Lend-a-Paw Fund that was helping families with food insecurity,” Martínez-Flores said. “The next ones I’m looking at (to help are) a couple of arts organizations because right now the arts are really, really struggling here in San Antonio.”

Read also: San Antonio Symphony receives $17,500 grant from National Endowment for the Arts

As of this week, Martínez-Flores has counted a total of $14,000 that will benefit students in the area.

“We were able to secure a matching partner with The Pearl,” Martínez-Flores said. “We always come together to help each other, and if we can continue doing this to give back, I’ll feel like I did something for this city I love so much.”

Less than 15 prints are available for purchase in-store, curbside or on Feliz Modern’s online shop. Martínez-Flores said she doesn’t plan to make another batch of prints and is instead going to sell items like t-shirts, stickers and postcards of the love letter at Feliz Modern.

To learn more about the Alamo Colleges Foundation, click here.

About the Authors

Alicia Barrera is a KSAT 12 News reporter and anchor. She is also a co-host of the streaming show KSAT News Now. Alicia is a first-generation Mexican-American, fluent in both Spanish and English with a bachelor's degree from Our Lady of the Lake University. She enjoys reading books, traveling solo across Mexico and spending time with family.

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