Written by Rabecca Rocha For as long as I could remember I wanted to draw. I’ve never really seen my culture depicted positively within the 3D or 2D animation world. Most recently my colleagues and I from Latinos in Tech Washington were able to go to a screening of Pixar’s: Coco. The energy was high and nervous, would this live up to the hype? Would this be a carbon Copy of “The book of life.” A well meaning, gorgeous movie with cover songs in the style of mariachi to make american audiences feel as though they could “relate.”? Would this movie feel the need to explain Día de los Muertos to its eager audience? When the lights dimmed, I felt my heart putter as the music began and much to my surprise even the Disney beginning music was beautiful. I felt the tears well and it didn’t stop. Los colores, the brightness and seeing the environments built in such a world was overwhelmingly beautiful. The dynamic storytelling along with the characters like Hector and especially his great great grandma, who picked herself up by the bootstraps and took care of her own, reminded me so much of my own abuelitas and especially my little brothers. La familia es todo. I know this sentiment well and watching this in a PIXAR movie no less was like being seen, I tried to regain my composure during the plots and twists but it was to no avail. The minute we see Hector strum his guitar I recall myself audibly gasping, not to be corny but it really did take me for surprise that we would then be transformed into the land of the dead by way of vibrant gorgeous colors. For the first time witnessing a story and environment put together with so much care, throw backs to the Rancheros and the musica it felt like home. Seeing our stories told by and for us is truly the beginning of the ever expanding black and brown voices that are coming forward. I highly recommend taking your whole family, friends and anyone else who was as skeptical as I was (along with much of my staff.) Pixar’s Coco is now open to select theatres, even some are in spanish so check your local listings. About the Author Rabecca Rocha is an 2D/3D Artist residing in Belltown, She is currently working on an indie game as one of their 3D character artists, volunteer designer for GeekGirlCon and in her spare time performs Let's Play! videos for her Channel LatinaGeek. She is the first of her name, mother of cats and is committed to growing the Latinx gamer community.
“Let’s do a Mixer!” Jose, Our cofounder and head of the steering committee said. I looked at him for a moment, thinking of the logistics, who would come? Do we have enough latinos in the city? A round of Yes, nods and affirmations came from around the table, Latinos in Tech was working out of a small office in the Impact HUB in Pioneer Square. From 6pm-8pm plotting ways to bring the community together while also creating dynamic and interesting events to keep our people engaged. And so it happened.. On November 17th, Latinos in Tech (Seattle) had its first mixer. I arrived thirty minutes early to help with setup, Jennifer ran to the next thing while I opened wine bottles. The space was big, gorgeous and reminded me of Jane Austen dances. Coming from the WeWork space to this one was a big leap. It resembled the cool vibes of Silicon Valley, everything was new and chic and we took up space there. After the wine bottles opened and the reggaeton was on the sonos speakers, I stood by the door. Eager to greet all the new and beautiful brown faces that would appear. Our very first visitor, my good friend Allison came in, signing her name and grabbing a name tag. I quickly introduced her to my team. I could not help but feel this immense sense of pride. We said we were going to do this and we did. Many hands went into assisting to set this up. Closer to 8pm the room was bustling with Spanish, English, Reggaeton and wine. More people arrived from all walks of Tech life, Doris from Latino film festival, Environmental Engineers, Software Developers and Data Analysts. The list goes on and the most exhilarating part was to look around and see folks, just like you from all areas of tech coming together. The feedback overall was incredibly positive. We had 30 people join us but, 30 is a start. As we continue to grow we want to continue to extend our hand into our community and pull them with us and have our voices heard. Thank you so much to everyone that came we would not have been able to do this without you. To the Amazing Leadership team and beyond we hope to see you at the next Mixer! About the Author Rebecca Rocha, is an 2D/3D Artist residing in Belltown, She is currently working on an indie game as one of their 3D character artists, volunteer designer for GeekGirlCon and in her spare time performs Let's Play! videos for her Channel LatinaGeek. She is the first of her name, mother of cats and is committed to growing the Latinx gamer community.